The green economy, within the context of sustainable development and poverty eradication, is one of the two themes of the 2012 Conference on Sustainable Development, to be held in Rio de Janeiro.
It encompasses some of the most important challenges we face today: eradicating poverty, improving our relationship with the environment, addressing the potential negative impacts of global climate change, and creating a new path for sustainable development.
The green economy is an enabling component of the overarching goal of sustainable development. It is defined as an economy that results in improved human well-being and reduced inequalities, while not exposing future generations to significant environmental risks and ecological scarcities.
Some countries are already moving aggressively towards the green economy and it is imperative that all countries consider reshaping their development strategies and practices accordingly. It is difficult to imagine a transition phase in which, at least in the early stages, the internalization of the environmental and social costs do not result in a reduction in real income. There is, therefore, a genuine basis to argue for significant investment to assist developing countries in their move to a green economy and thereby achieve a higher degree of sustainable development.