In April, 1992 the U.S. Congress made plans for U.S. participation.
Title: Expressing the sense of the Congress with respect to United States participation in the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED). Sponsor: Rep Fascell, Dante B. [FL-19] (introduced 3/12/1992) Cosponsors (37) Related Bills: S.CON.RES.89 Latest Major Action: 4/7/1992 Passed/agreed to in Senate. Status: Resolution agreed to in Senate in lieu of S.CON.RES. 89 with an amendment and an amended preamble by Yea-Nay Vote. 87-11. Record Vote No: 67.SUMMARY AS OF: 4/7/1992--Passed Senate amended. (There is 1 other summary)
Expresses the sense of the Congress that the President should: (1) play a strong role in cooperating with other governments to prepare for a successful United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) in Brazil in 1992; and (2) seek to develop international agreements to enhance global environmental protection and encourage the use of sustainable development practices for signature at UNCED.
Urges the President to support: (1) an international convention to reduce the threat of global climatic change; (2) the development of a global strategy and action plan to conserve biological diversity; (3) principles that provide for the international protection, growth, and sustainable use of mature forests; (4) the creation of an International Northern Forests Organization (to study the linkages among international trade in forest products, the management of northern forests, and the regional and global environment in order to assist member countries in the development of sustainable forest management policis); (5) policies and agreements that encourage the development of renewable sources of energy and energy-efficient technology with priority to developing more efficient transportation systems; (6) the implementation of the Montreal Guidelines for Protection of Marine Environment Against Pollution from Land-Based Sources; (7) programs to ensure the efficient and equitable use of fresh water resources with priority to the promotion of water conservation and demand management programs; (8) the acceleration of international efforts to reduce the emission of and phase out chemicals that deplete the ozone layer; (9) efforts to strengthen the Basel Convention on the Control of Transboundary Shipments of Hazardous Wastes and Their Disposal; (10) voluntary measures for financing UNCED agenda initiatives that integrate environmental projects and considerations with comprehensive developmental goals and that meet the concerns of developing countries; (11) new voluntary multilateral measures to provide assistance for global environmental protection activities in developing countries; (12) a process for international consultation for identifying methods of conserving natural resources and reducing the debt burden of developing countries; (13) initiatives to strengthen the ability of the United Nations and its agencies to assist the world community in developing and implementing agreements that serve the goals of UNCED; (14) the development of a reform system of national accounting that reflects full environmental costs; and (15) the international recognition of the right of the general public to be informed of, and participate in, decision making that affects the environment and the use of natural resources.
Calls on the President to recognize June 5, 1992, as World Environment Day.
Declares that the President should not support any action or undertake any commitment pursuant to this Act that would adversely affect the competitiveness of American industry or that would result in a net long-term loss of American jobs.
The U.S. system of government is designed to protect and maintain individual rights:
"All political power is inherent in the people, and governments derive their just powers from the consent of the governed, and are established to protect and maintain individual rights." (Article One, Section One, Washington State Constitution http://www.courts.wa.gov/education/constitution/index). LA-21 modifies legitimate national laws, programs, and policies that conflict with the plan.
In October 1992 the U.S. Congress decided the U.S. should "assume a strong leadership role" in LA21.
102d CONGRESS, 2d Session, H. CON. RES. 353
CONCURRENT RESOLUTION Expressing the sense of the Congress that the United States should assume a strong leadership role in implementing the decisions made at the Earth Summit by developing a national strategy to implement Agenda 21 and other Earth Summit agreements through domestic policy and foreign policy, by cooperating with all countries to identify and initiate further agreements to protect the global environment, and by supporting and participating in a high-level United Nations Sustainable Development Commission.
Whereas the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (hereinafter in this preamble referred to as `UNCED'), known as the Earth Summit, assembled in June of 1992 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, the largest summit of heads of state in history and outlined a comprehensive action plan for environmentally sustainable development, known as Agenda 21;
Whereas the United States has a strong national interest in the environmental sustainability of global economic development, and many pressing environmental and economic problems are inherently transboundary and not susceptible to resolution by the actions of any single nation acting alone;
Whereas Agenda 21, a plan of national and international actions to integrate environment and development, negotiated and adopted by the United States and 177 other countries, offers a significant starting point for continuing progress in avoiding environmental degradation and social and economic disintegration in the 21st century;
Whereas the role of the United States, as a major economic force and a country that has long been in the forefront of environmental protection activities nationally and internationally, should be one of leadership and positive action in the implementation process of Agenda 21 and all decisions of UNCED;
Whereas Agenda 21 urges all governments to adopt national strategies for sustainable development;
Whereas Agenda 21 urges all countries to `make significant progress' in incorporating environmental costs into economic decisions, to undertake research or sustainable production methods and consumption patterns, and to undertake other actions to make their economies more environmentally sustainable;
Whereas Agenda 21 calls for a `supportive international climate for achieving environment and development goals,' by `providing adequate financial resources to developing countries and dealing with international debt,' and calls for `the reallocation of resources presently committed to military purposes' to support United States policies and the efforts of developing countries to implement Agenda 21;
Whereas UNCED recommended that a high-level United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development (hereinafter in this preamble referred to as the `Commission') be established by the 47th United Nations General Assembly to provide a vital forum in which the member states of the United Nations may review progress made by considering reports from national governments, international organizations, and nongovernmental organizations;
Whereas the United States was an active and positive participant in UNCED negotiations regarding the Commission, and will play a major role in the decisions of the 47th United Nations General Assembly regarding the specific modalities and effectiveness of the Commission;
Whereas the agreements adopted at UNCED are milestones toward the achievement of environmentally sustainable economic development and for holding governments accountable for progress toward integrating environment and development;
Whereas many opportunities for agreements concerning more extensive actions on critical issues remained unresolved at UNCED and will require further attention by the nations of the world; and
Whereas the ultimate success of achieving sustainable development and a healthy environment at the national and international levels depends upon actions taken at the State and local community levels, and on actions by schools, public offices, businesses, and citizens: Now, therefore, be it
Resolved by the House of Representatives (the Senate concurring), That it is the sense of the Congress that--
(1) effective follow-up to achieve the many goals of the agreements reached at the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (hereinafter in this resolution referred to as `UNCED') will depend on the following actions by the President and the United States Government:
(A) The United States should adopt a national strategy for environmentally sustainable development, based on an extensive process of nationwide consultations with all interested organizations and individuals, including State and local governments, nongovernmental organization, businesses, and labor groups.
(B) The United States Government should encourage and facilitate, at all levels of community and sectors of society, appropriate means for adopting individual Agenda 21 plans of action, including the establishment of local, county, State, business, and other boards and commissions for achieving sustainable development. Each member of the Congress should help initiate this process within their States or districts.
(C) The President should establish an effective mechanism to plan, initiate, and coordinate United States policy for implementing Agenda 21. Responsibility should be vested in a duly constituted office, headed by an appropriate high level official, and the necessary staff support structure should be provided.
(D) Policies should be formulated for foreign policy and foreign assistance in order to help developing countries, and for domestic actions in order to assure appropriate action by the United States to implement Agenda 21;
(2) in order to contribute to a transition to a sustainable United States economy, the research and policy initiatives urged in Agenda 21 should be pursued, including research on sustainable consumption and production patterns, creation of a policy framework for sustainable consumption patterns, identification of a strategy to eliminate or reduce subsidies for unsustainable natural resource exploitation, and to improve pricing policies;
(3) the Congress should adopt a plan to reallocate an appropriate amount of savings from reduced defense spending in order to achieve its goals of global environmental protection and sustainable development over the next decade;
(4) the President should urge and actively participate in new and existing multilateral efforts aimed at creating a more favorable international economic climate for developing countries to practice sustainable development, and such efforts should include international consultations regarding reduction in developing country debt linked with environmental policy reforms, and increased loans and concessional assistance upon development and implementation of national sustainable development strategies in developing countries;
(5) the United States should actively support, at the 47th United Nations General Assembly, the effective establishment of a high-level United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development (hereinafter in this resolution referred to as the `Commission'), including the establishment of provisions for meaningful participation by organizations of the United Nations system, international financial institutions, and other relevant intergovernmental organizations and nongovernmental organizations recommended by UNCED;
(6) the President should affirm strong United States commitment to the Commission by appointing a high-level representative from the United States to the Commission, and by encouraging the United Nations Secretary General to appoint an Under Secretary General for Sustainable Development to coordinate the implementation of Agenda 21 in the United Nations system and to head the secretariat support structure for the Commission;
(7) the President should submit a national report to the Commission on activities the United States has undertaken to implement Agenda 21, both domestically and internationally, on progress made toward fulfilling other commitments undertaken at UNCED, and on other environmental and developmental issues that the United States finds relevant, and should strongly encourage all United Nations members to submit national reports;
(8) the United States should encourage the Commission to call for periodic international meetings to continue the process toward developing and advancing international agreement to facilitate sustainable economic development for the protection of the global environment and the promotion of human dignity of current and future generations; and
(9) the President should submit an annual report to the Congress on the steps taken by the United States to implement Agenda 21 and the recommendations made by this resolution, and should make information regarding such steps available to members of the Congress upon their request.
Passed the House of Representatives October 2, 1992.
Rep Ackerman, Gary L. [NY-7] - 8/11/1992 Rep Andrews, Thomas H. [ME-1] - 8/12/1992 Rep Atkins, Chester G. [MA-5] - 8/12/1992 Rep Bacchus, Jim [FL-11] - 8/11/1992 Rep Beilenson, Anthony C. [CA-23] - 8/5/1992 Rep Blackwell, Lucien E. [PA-2] - 8/11/1992 Rep Blaz, Ben G. [GU] - 8/5/1992 Rep Collins, Cardiss [IL-7] - 8/5/1992 Rep Cox, John W., Jr. [IL-16] - 8/11/1992 Rep Dellums, Ronald V. [CA-8] - 8/11/1992 Rep Dymally, Mervyn M. [CA-31] - 9/21/1992 Rep Edwards, Don [CA-10] - 9/9/1992 Rep Evans, Lane [IL-17] - 8/11/1992 Rep Fascell, Dante B. [FL-19] - 8/5/1992 Rep Feighan, Edward F. [OH-19] - 8/5/1992 Rep Flake, Floyd H. [NY-6] - 9/9/1992 Rep Foglietta, Thomas M. [PA-1] - 9/21/1992 Rep Frank, Barney [MA-4] - 8/11/1992 Rep Frost, Martin [TX-24] - 8/12/1992 Rep Gejdenson, Sam [CT-2] - 9/9/1992 Rep Gilman, Benjamin A. [NY-22] - 8/11/1992 Rep Green, S. William [NY-15] - 8/5/1992 Rep Hertel, Dennis M. [MI-14] - 8/5/1992 Rep Hochbrueckner, George J. [NY-1] - 8/11/1992 Rep Horton, Frank J. [NY-29] - 9/9/1992 Rep Hughes, William J. [NJ-2] - 8/11/1992 Rep Jefferson, William J. [LA-2] - 8/11/1992 Rep Johnson, Tim [SD] - 8/11/1992 Rep Jones, Walter B. [NC-1] - 8/5/1992 Rep Kleczka, Gerald D. [WI-4] - 8/11/1992 Rep Klug, Scott L. [WI-2] - 9/21/1992 Rep Kolter, Joseph P. [PA-4] - 8/11/1992 Rep Kostmayer, Peter H. [PA-8] - 9/21/1992 Rep Lantos, Tom [CA-11] - 9/21/1992 Rep Lehman, William [FL-17] - 8/11/1992 Rep Machtley, Ronald K. [RI-1] - 8/11/1992 Rep Markey, Edward J. [MA-7] - 8/11/1992 Rep Mazzoli, Romano L. [KY-3] - 8/11/1992 Rep McDermott, Jim [WA-7] - 8/11/1992 Rep Miller, George [CA-7] - 8/5/1992 Rep Miller, John R. [WA-1] - 8/5/1992 Rep Moran, James P. [VA-8] - 8/11/1992 Rep Morella, Constance A. [MD-8] - 8/5/1992 Rep Norton, Eleanor Holmes [DC] - 9/9/1992 Rep Owens, Major R. [NY-12] - 9/9/1992 Rep Owens, Wayne [UT-2] - 8/11/1992 Rep Panetta, Leon [CA-16] - 8/12/1992 Rep Payne, Donald M. [NJ-10] - 8/11/1992 Rep Pease, Donald J. [OH-13] - 9/9/1992 Rep Porter, John Edward [IL-10] - 8/5/1992 Rep Rangel, Charles B. [NY-16] - 9/9/1992 Rep Sanders, Bernard [VT-98] - 8/11/1992 Rep Scheuer, James H. [NY-8] - 8/5/1992 Rep Schroeder, Patricia [CO-1] - 8/11/1992 Rep Schumer, Charles E. [NY-10] - 8/11/1992 Rep Sikorski, Gerry E. [MN-6] - 8/5/1992 Rep Studds, Gerry E. [MA-10] - 8/5/1992 Rep Swett, Dick [NH-2] - 8/11/1992 Rep Tallon, Robert M. (Robin) [SC-6] - 8/12/1992 Rep Towns, Edolphus [NY-11] - 8/11/1992 Rep Traxler, Bob [MI-8] - 8/12/1992 Rep Unsoeld, Jolene [WA-3] - 8/5/1992 Rep Wolpe, Howard E. [MI-3] - 8/12/1992
Here's a chronology of legislation used to implement LA21 in the U.S.A. from CRS: Global Climate Change:
The 100th Congress enacted the Global Climate Protection Act as Title XI of H.R. 1777 of P.L. 100-204, assigning Department of State and the Environmental Protection Agency the responsibility to develop a coordinated national policy on global climate protection and containing other measures for coordination, research, and international cooperation.
In the lOlst Congress, interest widened among Members and committees of relevant jurisdiction that sought to acquire information from all sides of the scientific debate over possible global climate warming, to evaluate the potential economic and strategic impacts on the United States of a warmer climate, and to assess the adequacy of the Federal organizational base for conducting scientific research and policy studies. Seventy-three bills, resolutions, concurrent resolutions, and amendments dealing with global climate and atmospheric change were introduced in the lOlst Congress.' There were major enactments that dealt with global warming issues in legislation on: foreign aid decisions and U.S. foreign lending policies (P.L. 101-167, P.L. 101-240, P.L. 101-513); clean air (P.L. 101-549); Department of Defense environmental research and activities (P.L. 101-189, P.L. 101-510); water resources (P.L. 101-397); taxation (P.L. 101-239, P.L. 101-508); agriculture and forestry (P.L. 101-624); and Federal organization (P.L. 101-6061. For further information, see CRS Report 91-359 SPR, Global Climate Change and the lOlst Congress: A Review of Legislation.
Congressional interest and concern about climate and global change continued during 102nd Congress. There was interest among the relevant congressional committees in overseeing congressionally mandated efforts to improve coordination among Federal agencies conducting scientific research in atmospheric change and policy research in impacts assessment and response strategies. Congress also closely followed the progress of U.N. negotiations for achieving a framework convention on global climate and sent a parliamentary delegation to the Earth Summit held in Rio de Janeiro, in June. The Senate consented to ratification of the Convention [Treaty Doc. 102-381; the instrument of ratification was signed by the President on Oct. 13, 1992. On the legislative agenda, there was a noticeable shift toward formulating response strategies. A number of bills were considered with provisions that indirectly affect the emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases or that deal directly in a variety of approaches to reduce the rate of generation of greenhouse gases. Other legislation focused on developing accommodation and mitigation measures for climate change, to the extent that global warming occurs. Seventy-one measures relating to global climate change were introduced during the 102nd Congress. Some legislation introduced in the first session was revisited in the second with further hearings, mark- up sessions, or reintroduced as original bills or substituting amendments.
Eight major bills relating to global climate change were enacted in the 102nd Congress. In the first session, these include the Foreign Relations Authorization Act for FY1992-1993 (P.L. 102-138), which expressed the sense of the Congress regarding negotiations of the U.N. International Negotiating Committee and a framework convention on climate change; Departments of Veterans Affairs and Housing and Urban Development and Other Sundry Agencies Appropriations Act for FYI992 (P.L. 102-139), which included funding for EPA and NASA for greenhouse gas, global warming, and stratospheric ozone depletion research and NASA funding for the Consortium for International Earth Science Information Network (CIESIN) to assess policy options to address global climate change; Foreign Operations, Export Financing and Related Programs Appropriations Act for FYI992 (P.L. 102-163), which set forth restrictions on U.S. foreign aid through a Global Warming Initiative; and the National Aeronautic and Space Administration Authorization Act for FYI992 (P.L. 102-1951, which enhanced global change research activities within NASA and improved data collection, archival, and dissemination of remotely sensed land data. In the second session, the Department of Veterans Affairs and Housing and Urban Development
... Appropriations Act for FYI993 (P.L. 102-389) continued funding of research on global warming and stratospheric ozone depletion for EPA and NASA and funded CIESIN through NASA and the White Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP); Foreign Operations, Export Financing and Related Programs Appropriations Act for FYI993 (P.L. 102-391) appropriated funds through AID to developing countries for reducing greenhouse gas emissions through a Global Warming Initiative, and through the World Bank's Global Environmental Facility for other U.S. obligations under environmental agreements; National Defense Authorization Act for FYI993 (P.L. 102-484) called for an evaluation of DOD use of Class I and I1 ozone-depleting substances, which include CFCs and Halons, and a subsequent report to Congress; National Energy Policy Act of 1992 (P.L. 102-486), Title XVI
-- Global Climate Change, called for the appointment of a Director of Climate Protection within DOE, several reports and analyses of greenhouse gas emissions including a national inventory, and voluntary reporting of greenhouse gas reductions. The title further established a Global Climate Change Response Fund as depository for US. contributions to a financial mechanism pursuant to the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change. This Act also increased baseline taxes on certain uses of ozone-depleting substances. For further information, see CRS Report 93-445 SPR, Global Climate Change Legislation: A Review of the 102nd Congress.