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The Environmental Perspective to the Year 2000 and Beyond (decision 14/13)

69. At the 16th meeting of the session, on 19 June, the Council had before it a draft decision on this subject submitted by the Bureau (UNEP/GC.14L.46), together with a suggested draft resolution on the subject for submission to the General Assembly for consideration and adoption (UNEP/GC.14/L.47).

70. The draft decision, including, as an annex, the suggested draft resolution submission to the General Assembly for consideration and adoption, was adopted by consensus.

71. The representative of Japan said that his delegation had joined the consensus in deciding to submit the suggested draft resolution on the Environmental Perspective to the Year 2000 and Beyond to the General Assembly. However, it did not share some of the views expressed in the Environmental Perspective, especially with regard to energy problems and the relation between security and environment.

72. The representative of Mexico said that his delegation, in a spirit of conciliation, had not opposed the consensus to transmit the Environmental Perspective to the general Assembly for Consideration and Adoption. The Mexican Government would examine the document with care and take any action it deemed necessary at the forthcoming session of the Assembly. He reiterated his Government’s firm conviction that nuclear weapons were the greatest threat mankind and hence the environment; it considered it essential to redirect the resources from the arms race to promote development and environmental activities. Lastly, the Mexican Government was convinced of the need to reform the international economic system so as to reduce inequality and the existing gap between developed and developing countries.

73. The representative of the United States of American said that his delegating had been pleased to join in the consensus on the Environmental Perspective of its importance to so many Council Members and also in recognition of the efforts made by the Intergovernmental Inter-sessional Preparatory Committee in preparing what was collective statement of the environmental perceptions, aspirations and economic and political systems. In view of the status the Environmental perspective document might well attain, however, it was important to state that while associating with the spirit of the Perspective as well as with its basic orientation and the majority of conclusions and recommendations, the United delegation could not agree with some aspects of the document, relating to such issues as international economic development, trade, treatment of transnational corporations and agro-economic and trade policies.

74. The representative of France said that her delegation had associated itself with the consensus on the Environmental Perspective although it had difficulty associating environmental problems with political concepts in documents of United nations bodies that were purely technical and economic in character.

75. The representative of the Federal republic of Germany said that his delegation had decided to join the consensus on the Environmental Perspective in the firm belief that the document could be used as a valuable means of achieving greater awareness of environmental problems among all concerned and as an important step towards closer and more constructive international co-operation in the protection and rehabilitation of the environment. In so doing, his delegation wished to emphasize again its government’s firm commitment to that world-wide task. However, his delegation dissociated itself from certain views expressed in the document, particularly in regard to economic and financial issues, which came within the competence of other international bodies, both within and outside the United Nations system. His government would continue to contribute actively to international co-operation to protect and rehabilitate the environmental and promote environmentally sound and sustainable development.

76. The representative of the United Kingdom said that her delegation had gone a long way form its original position in order to achieve consensus and was delighted that it had indeed been achieved. However, it shared the concern of other delegations abut the dangers of politicizing UNEP. Her delegation maintained, as it had done on previous occasions, that the General Assembly, and not UNEP, was appropriate forum for discussing issues such as disarmament, and it might well return to the matter when the Environmental Perspective wad debated in the Assembly.