The Stockholm +50 event is an opportunity to take stock of the progress achieved in the 50 years since the 1972 Conference on the Environment, and to instigate serious reflection on today’s environmental crisis. But as the COP26 event highlighted this year, there remains a significant gap between the urgency of the challenges and the willingness of major powers to undertake the kind of radical action necessary to collectively shift towards more sustainable forms consumption. Instead, most proposals by the world’s largest emitters remain framed by longstanding models of infinite growth, exploitative energy production, and a zealous belief that our survival will come by way of technological innovation. Current public discourse features limited and unimaginative propositions to tackle pollution, biodiversity loss, and the degradation of our natural environment—the triple planetary crisis that threatens humanity.
In the lead-up to the Stockholm +50 event, UNEP and UN University Centre for Policy Research will lead a collaborative effort to capture, interrogate, and elevate alternative paradigms of the human/nature relationship, commissioning papers and views from widely diverse sources, and overlaying internal analysis.