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Regional Action Programme for Environmentally Sound and Sustainable Development 2001-2005

The Ministerial Conference on Environment and Development in Asia and the Pacific 2000 held in Kita-Kyushu City, Japan, 31 August - 5 September 2000 established the REGIONAL ACTION PROGRAMME FOR ENVIRONMENTALLY SOUND AND SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT, 2001-2005.

One of the most ambitious and exciting initiatives in the RAP 2001-2005 is a plan to:

"Promote and assist a dedicated global project to create 100% renewable energy, hydrogen based economies in the small island developing states of the region."

The RAP calls for "Small island developing states and industrial countries wishing to participate in a global partnership to attain demonstration communities of 100% renewable energy economies based on hydrogen power promote this initiative locally and nationally and cooperate fully between all stakeholders to achieve this goal no later than 2020."

To accomplish this, the Conference recommended its member nations to, "Establish bilateral partnerships between developed and undeveloped countries for the transfer of technology and capitalization funds to advance the implementation of renewable energy and non-fossil fuel economies."

The plan will guide United Nations activities in the Asia Pacific Region for the next 5 years and all national governments, international agencies, NGOs, and the private sector are urged to participate with the initiative as a win-win scenario to:

  • conduct research and development on developing 100% integrated renewable energy societies;
  • lower carbon dioxide emissions (and gain carbon credits under the Kyoto protocol);
  • provide subsidies to renewable energy manufacturers to assist in the rapid development of integrated renewable energy societies;
  • meet the International accords of the Barbados Programme of Action;
    provide energy, employment and opportunity for development, especially in the rural small island developing states;
  • reduce the cost of importing oil based fuels to the small island developing states.

The delegations from Tuvalu and Vanuatu were especially influential at the meeting. Supported by the other small island developing states, the renewable energy initiative was considered a highlight of the conference.

The Minister for Lands, Geology and Mines of the Republic of Vanuatu, Maxine Carlot Korman, presented a strong case for the initiative at the associated ECOASIA2000 conference. Minister Korman, who was head of AOSIS during the Earth Summit in Rio in 1992 reviewed the progress - or lack of progress - towards meeting the environmental requirements to lower global carbon dioxide outputs since the Summit.

The full text of Minister Korman is available at www.ICE-PAC.org/participants/vanuatu/EcoAsia2000.html

The Regional Action Programme is available in PDF format.

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