Organization of American States Summits of the Americas
Follow-up and Implementation: Mandates

ENVIRONMENT: Sustainable Development

  1. To advance the Glasgow Leaders’ Declaration on Forest and Land Use, national deforestation and conservation commitments, and regional efforts to halt and reverse deforestation and conserve, sustainably manage, and use ecosystems, we commit to strengthen our efforts to:

    • a. Work, with the support of regional and subregional organizations, to stimulate sustainable development and promote equal opportunity for populations affected by climate change, including indigenous peoples and local communities, respecting, preserving, and maintaining knowledge, innovations, and practices embodying traditional lifestyles relevant for the conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity, subject to domestic legislation; (Our Sustainable Green Future, IX Summit of the Americas, Los Angeles, 2022).

  1. To decrease the amount of greenhouse gas emissions released into the atmosphere from agricultural, forestry, mining, and other land-use sectors, we commit to:

    • b. Seek to increase aggregate public investment in agricultural innovation for climate-smart agriculture and food systems over the next five years, including with the support of the private sector and multilateral mechanisms;

    • d. Support indigenous peoples, farmers, and/or other people working and living in rural communities in strengthening their capacities to improve adaptation and mitigation, to counter the consequences of climate change, fostering actions to reduce emissions, promoting actions that have a beneficial impact on ecosystems, and promoting climatesmart and sustainable farming;

    • f. Sustainably use and foster the conservation and restoration of ecosystems, including those with high capacity of carbon capture and storage, such as wetlands, moorlands, grasslands, mangroves, secondary forests, and tropical forests and in general terrestrial, marine, and coastal ecosystems, in consultation with stakeholders;

    • g. Promote policies and actions that contribute to the implementation of sustainable solutions, such as nature-based solutions, ecosystem-based approaches, and other management and conservation approaches, pursuing efforts to limit the increase in average global temperature to 1.5oC with the support of countries and relevant institutions; (Our Sustainable Green Future, IX Summit of the Americas, Los Angeles, 2022).

  1. To harness the role of oceans and other bodies of water to mitigate and adapt to climate change and to contribute to global efforts to combat plastic pollution, we commit to:

    • b. Reduce plastic pollution by promoting sustainable consumption and production, as well as environmentally-sound practices such as, circular economy and waste management solutions, and supporting strong stakeholder engagement, including from populations in situations of vulnerability; (Our Sustainable Green Future, IX Summit of the Americas, Los Angeles, 2022).

  1. Promote energy efficiency in new public and private infrastructure plans as well as encourage the rational, efficient use of energy, contemplating the opportunities for energy integration to facilitate the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, considering all relevant Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), especially SDG7, promoting the use of efficient energy-saving and energy-labeling technologies to achieve net zero emissions, as appropriate, following the requirements, circumstances, and each state’s legislation. (Accelerating the Clean, Sustainable, Renewable, and Just Energy Transition, IX Summit of the Americas, Los Angeles, 2022).

  1. Work towards implementing 2030 emission mitigation targets and develop, as far as possible, country-level roadmaps to accelerate the process of energy transition toward a low carbon economy, in line with nationally determined contributions under the Paris Agreement, in a timeline consistent with a pathway toward the objectives set forth in Article 2 of the Paris Agreement. (Accelerating the Clean, Sustainable, Renewable, and Just Energy Transition, IX Summit of the Americas, Los Angeles, 2022).

  1. To continue and strengthen hemispheric efforts geared toward making progress in the areas of sustainable development and climate change in order to counteract the impacts of climate change, increase the capacity for adaptation of communities and ecosystems vulnerable to climate change, and step up efforts to mitigate greenhouse-gas emissions, in accordance with the principles, objectives, and provisions of the international conventions and instruments, signed by each of our countries, especially under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change and the United Nations process. (Environment, Initiatives VII Summit of the Americas, Panama City, 2015).

  1. We recognise that social and economic development and protection of the environment, including the sustainable management of natural resources, are mutually reinforcing, interdependent pillars of sustainable development. We therefore reaffirm our strong commitment to sustainable development, as set out in the 1992 Rio de Janeiro Declaration on Environment and Development, the 1994 Barbados Programme of Action (BPOA), the 1996 Declaración de Santa Cruz de la Sierra, the 2002 Johannesburg Declaration on Sustainable Development, the 2005 Mauritius Strategy for the implementation of the BPOA, the 2006 Declaration of Santa Cruz + 10 and the objectives of the United Nations Millennium Declaration. (Declaration of Port of Spain, 2009).

  1. We will continue to work towards promoting good environmental governance by, inter alia, advancing conservation efforts and strengthening, implementing and effectively enforcing national environmental laws, in accordance with our sustainable development priorities and international law. (Declaration of Port of Spain, 2009).

  1. We will collaborate to promote environmental sustainability through regional cooperation, in accordance with national legislation and applicable international law, in the areas of human and institutional capacity building, transfer on mutually agreed terms of environmentally sound technology, and effective mobilisation of new and additional human and financial resources, as appropriate, including innovative public and private financing mechanisms and instruments, for inter alia:

    1. the sustainable management of forests, including efforts for reducing deforestation;
    2. the sustainable management of protected areas and World Heritage Sites;
    3. protecting endangered and migratory species;
    4. combating illegal international trafficking of biodiversity;
    5. promoting the exchange of scientific knowledge on biodiversity, such as through the Inter-American Biodiversity Information Network; and,
    6. recognising and sharing the benefits arising from access to and use of genetic resources and associated traditional knowledge. (Declaration of Port of Spain, 2009).

  1. We renew our support for the Inter-American Program for Sustainable Development (PIDS) (2006-2009), and we instruct the relevant Ministers and invite all other authorities responsible for sustainable development to gather in 2010, under the auspices of the OAS, with the collaboration of relevant international organisations and financial and development institutions, and with the participation of the academic community and other members of civil society, to assess the achievements of the Program to date, and renew or modify the PIDS as necessary. We will give special attention to the most vulnerable areas. (Declaration of Port of Spain, 2009).

  1. We acknowledge the challenge of environmental management in the Hemisphere. We commit our governments to strengthen environmental protection and sustainable use of natural resources with a view to ensuring a balance among economic development, social development and the protection of the environment, as these are interdependent and mutually reinforcing. Our goal is to achieve sustainable development throughout the Hemisphere (Declaration of Québec, 2001).

  1. Recognizing that the protection of the environment and the sustainable use of natural resources are essential to prosperity and to the sustainability of our economies, as well as the quality of life and health for present and future generations; and committed to advancing sustainable development throughout the Hemisphere consistent with our 1994 and 1998 Summit of the Americas Declarations and Plans of Action and the 1996 Santa Cruz de la Sierra Declaration and Plan of Action:(Plan of Action Québec, 2001).

  1. Support the preparatory process for the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development to review progress achieved in the implementation of the outcome of the UN Conference on Environment and Development, focusing on areas where further efforts are needed to implement Agenda 21 and explore ways to reinvigorate the global commitment to sustainable development; (Plan of Action Québec, 2001).

  1. Request the OAS through its General Secretariat, in coordination with other agencies, to organize a meeting at the ministerial level before the end of 2001, to be held in Bolivia on the occasion of the fifth anniversary of the Santa Cruz de la Sierra Summit of 1996, and present contributions to the Rio+10 Summit in 2002, recognizing that by its nature , sustainable development has long-term goals that require the countries of the Hemisphere to act in concert in this area; (Plan of Action Québec, 2001).

  1. Request the United Nations Environment Program (UNP.) and PAHO to support the convening of a regional meeting between Ministers responsible for the Environment and Ministers of Health to take stock of progress achieved, to identify priority areas for renewed emphasis and cooperative initiatives, and to explore ways of moving forward in the Americas and globally, with a view to contributing to the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development, recognizing the links between the environment and human health; (Plan of Action Québec, 2001).

  1. Consult and coordinate domestically and regionally, as appropriate, with the aim of ensuring that economic, social and environmental policies are mutually supportive and contribute to sustainable development, building on existing initiatives undertaken by relevant regional and international organizations; (Plan of Action Québec, 2001).

  1. Promote the adoption of concrete and urgent actions towards the implementation of sustainable forest management; promote policies, practices, incentives and investment in support of sustainable forest management, building on existing hemispheric initiatives and cooperation, as well as support the UN Forum on Forests and its program of work; (Plan of Action Québec, 2001).

  1. We will strengthen national, hemispheric, and international efforts aimed at environmental protection as a basis for sustainable development that provides human beings a healthy and productive life in harmony with nature. The commitments undertaken at the Miami Summit and the Summit on Sustainable Development held in Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Bolivia, provide a solid basis for strengthening our actions. As parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, we underscore the importance of working together to further fulfillment of the agreement reached at the Conference in Kyoto, Japan, and to promote its ratification in our countries. Moreover, we will work closely to make preparations for a Conference of the Parties to be held in November of this year in Buenos Aires, Argentina (Declaration of Santiago, 1998).

  1. We acknowledge that the development of energy links between our countries and the intensification of trade in the energy sector strengthen and foster the integration of the Americas. Energy integration, based on competitive and transparent activities, and in compliance with national conditions and objectives, contributes to the sustainable development of our nations and to the improvement of the quality of life of our people with minimum impact on the environment (Declaration of Santiago, 1998).

  1. We, the elected Heads of State and Government of the Americas, gathered in Santa Cruz de la Sierra as decided at the Summit of the Americas held in Miami in 1994, reaffirm our determination to move forward toward sustainable development and to implement the decisions and commitments set forth in the Rio Declaration and Agenda 21, which were adopted at the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, held in Rio de Janeiro in 1992.
    We also reaffirm the commitments undertaken in the Declaration of Principles and the Plan of Action of the Summit of the Americas.

    We undertake to promote the agreements reached at the Global Conference on the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States, held in Barbados in 1994, and recognize the importance of the principles enunciated at recent United Nations conferences concerning sustainable development.
    We support the efforts launched at the hemispheric, regional, and subregional levels, such as the Central American Alliance for Sustainable Development, the North American Agreement on Environmental Cooperation, the Treaty for Amazonian Cooperation, and the Permanent South Pacific Commission.(Declaración de Santa Cruz de la Sierra, 1996).

  1. We reaffirm that human beings are entitled to a healthy and productive life in harmony with nature and, as such, are the focus of sustainable development concerns. Development strategies need to include sustainability as an essential requirement for the balanced, interdependent, and integral attainment of economic, social, and environmental goals. (Declaración de Santa Cruz de la Sierra, 1996).

  • Initiative17. Continue to participate actively in the international dialogue on forest issues initiated by the Intergovernmental Panel on Forests under the auspices of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. In this respect, it is necessary to give full attention to all the program elements included in the terms of reference approved by the Panel. (Plan of Action Santa Cruz de la Sierra, 1996).

  • Initiative18. Seek to establish, implement, and monitor, as appropriate, national plans and programs for the conservation and sustainable management of forests. (Plan of Action Santa Cruz de la Sierra, 1996).

  • Initiative19. Develop appropriate mechanisms to promote opportunities for public participation in the sustainable management of forests, including on the part of indigenous and local communities, whose culture and needs should be respected and supported. (Plan of Action Santa Cruz de la Sierra, 1996).

  • Initiative20. Cooperate in the development of policies and comprehensive strategies for achieving sustainable forest management, bilaterally and through programs such as the International Model Forest Network, as well as consider ways and means to address the critical areas related to the transfer and development of environmentally sound technology, on favorable terms as mutually agreed. (Plan of Action Santa Cruz de la Sierra, 1996).

  • Initiative21. Support criteria and indicators at the regional, subregional, and national levels as mechanisms for assessing progress toward sustainable forest management. Continue to participate, as appropriate, in the ongoing initiatives relating to the development of criteria and indicators for sustainable forest management, such as the Tarapoto and Montreal processes. (Plan of Action Santa Cruz de la Sierra, 1996).

  • Initiative28. Consider, in accordance with the terms of the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity, ways and means for the effective protection and use of traditional knowledge, innovations, and practices of indigenous people and other local communities relevant to the conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity, as well as for fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from such knowledge, innovations, and practices. (Plan of Action Santa Cruz de la Sierra, 1996).

  • Initiative41. Develop strategies that encourage policies and programs for prevention of and protection against pollution, cleaning up of the environment, and waste treatment, strengthening sustainable urban development. These policies may include public-private sector associations, market-based programs, and other volunteer programs. (Plan of Action Santa Cruz de la Sierra, 1996).

  • Initiative45. Foster the inclusion of sustainable development in urban development plans, including mechanisms for evaluating the environmental impact. (Plan of Action Santa Cruz de la Sierra, 1996).

  • II.4. Water Resources and Coastal Areas
    Recognizing that the primary challenges to the attainment of sustainable development in this area include:

    • Assurance and improvement of the conservation, sustainable management and utilization of water resources, including the development of integrated programs and institutional capacity;
    • Prevention of the contamination of water resources and assurance that drinking water supplies are safe and adequate;
    • Promotion of cooperation among countries at bilateral, subregional, regional, and hemispheric levels on water resources issues;
    • Promotion of user participation in the decision-making process on water resources management;
    • Conservation and utilization, in a sustainable manner, of inland, coastal, and marine water resources, including wetlands, in the region;
    • Promotion of the integrated management and sustainable development of the marine environment and coastal areas; and
    • Prevention and control of environmental degradation caused by pollution and the unsustainable use of inland, coastal, and marine water resources that threaten human health and the economic viability and environmental integrity of these resources,
    Taking into consideration the social, economic, and environmental value of inland, coastal, and marine water resources, the Governments will carry out the following initiatives (Plan of Action Santa Cruz de la Sierra, 1996).

  • III.1 Institutional Arrangements
    The primary responsibility for implementing the Plan of Action for the Sustainable Development of the Americas falls to governments, individually and collectively, with the participation of all sectors of our societies. To realize both meaningful follow-up and continued adherence to the cross-cutting dimensions of sustainable development, the Governments will :( Plan of Action Santa Cruz de la Sierra, 1996).

  • III.2.9 Support the policies aimed at the creation and strengthening of national environmental funds, as a mechanism to foster and channel national and international support for the initiatives to finance sustainable development. (Plan of Action Santa Cruz de la Sierra, 1996).

  • III.2.10 Develop financial instruments which support sustainable use and conservation of biodiversity, including venture capital funds and scholarship funds for training persons, in particular those representing small businesses and/or nongovernmental organizations, in best sustainable development practices, in order to promote public-private partnerships.. (Plan of Action Santa Cruz de la Sierra, 1996).

  • III.12. Request that the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), among other organs, agencies, and organizations of the United Nations system, to develop adequate mechanisms to collaborate and coordinate with the OAS within their respective areas of action and mandates, to support national, regional, and hemispheric efforts toward sustainable development. (Plan of Action Santa Cruz de la Sierra, 1996).

  • III.14. Promote coordination and complementarity between the processes for follow-up and implementation of the Plan of Action of the Summit of the Americas and the Plan of Action on Sustainable Development. To achieve this objective the Inter-American Committee on Sustainable Development (CIDS) and the Summit Implementation Review Group (SIRG) should exchange the relevant information. (Plan of Action Santa Cruz de la Sierra, 1996).

  1. Social progress and economic prosperity can be sustained only if our people live in a healthy environment and our ecosystems and natural resources are managed carefully and responsibly. To advance and implement the commitments made at the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, held in Rio de Janeiro, and the 1994 Global Conference on the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States, held in Barbados, we will create cooperative partnerships to strengthen our capacity to prevent and control pollution, to protect ecosystems and use our biological resources on a sustainable basis, and to encourage clean, efficient and sustainable energy production and use. To benefit future generations through environmental conservation, including the rational use of our ecosystems, natural resources and biological heritage, we will continue to pursue technological, financial and other forms of cooperation (Declaration of Principles Miami, 1994).

  1. We will advance our social well-being and economic prosperity in ways that are fully cognizant of our impact on the environment. We agree to support the Central American Alliance for Sustainable Development, which seeks to strengthen those democracies by promoting regional economic and social prosperity and sound environmental management. In this context, we support the convening of other regional meetings on sustainable development (Declaration of Principles Miami, 1994).

  • 22.2 Seek to ensure that strategies for the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity are integrated into relevant economic development activities including forestry, agriculture, and coastal zone management, taking into account the social dimension and impact of these activities. (Plan of Action Miami, 1994).

  • 22.3 Develop and implement the policies, techniques, and programs to assess, conserve, and sustainably use terrestrial, marine, and coastal biodiversity resources. (Plan of Action Miami, 1994).

  • 22.5 Support democratic governmental mechanisms to engage public participation, particularly including members of indigenous communities and other affected groups, in the development of policy involving conservation and sustainable use of natural environments. The forms of this participation should be defined by each individual country (Plan of Action Miami, 1994).

  • 22.7 Build capacity for the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity, through programs on management of parks and protected areas, forests and wetlands management, the Small Islands Developing States Action Plan, the Coral Reef Initiative, CITES support projects, and the Caribbean Regional Marine Pollution Action Plan, among others. (Plan of Action Miami, 1994).

  • 22.8 Launch a "Decade of Discovery" to promote hemispheric technical and scientific cooperation and to facilitate the exchange of information relevant to the conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity. (Plan of Action Miami, 1994).

  • 22.9 Increase support of training and education initiatives addressing sustainable use of biodiversity resources and foster activities by universities, non-governmental actors and organizations and the private sector to assist in the training of managers and to empower local communities. (Plan of Action Miami, 1994).

  • 23.9 Develop environmental policies and laws with the goal of ensuring that economic integration of the region occurs in an environmentally sustainable manner. (Plan of Action Miami, 1994).

  • 23.11 Develop compatible environmental laws and regulations, at high levels of environmental protection, and promote the implementation of international environmental agreements.
    Discuss progress on implementation of international and national activities described above at the 1996 Summit Conference on Sustainable Development in Bolivia and at subsequent annual sustainable development ministerials. (Plan of Action Miami, 1994).



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