Road to Rio

“A Common Future” to “The Future We Want”

Most of us recall that our journey on the road to sustainable development began in Rio de Janeiro in June of 1992 when the first UN Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) was held in Rio de Janeiro and adopted an agenda for environment and development in the 21st Century. Referred to as Agenda 21, UNCED called for a Programme of Action for Sustainable Development which contained the Rio Declaration on Environment and Development, and recognized each nation’s right to pursue social and economic progress and assigned to States the responsibility of adopting a model of sustainable development; and, the Statement of Forest Principles. Agreements were also reached on the Convention on Biological Diversity and the Framework Convention on Climate Change. UNCED for the first time mobilized the Major Groups and legitimized their participation in the sustainable development process.

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Interactive Timeline

This interactive visualization shows the evolution of the inter-governmental process on sustainable development over the last four decades. The grey squares represent resolutions that are either referenced by or make reference to other resolutions. Clicking on a grey square will display the relationship between the resolutions via a red arc. The selected and referenced resolutions can then be downloaded.

Launch Interactive Timeline on Sustainable Development Resolutions


Sustainable Development Resolutions

Symbol Title Date Resolution
A/RES/2296XXVII International responsibility of States in regard to the environment 12/15/1972 PDF icon Download
A/RES/2398XXIII Problems of the human environment 12/16/1968 PDF icon Download
A/RES/2581XXIV United Nations Conference on the Human Environment 12/15/1969 PDF icon Download
A/RES/2657XXV United Nations Conference on the Human Environment 12/07/1970 PDF icon Download
A/RES/2849XXVI Development and environment 12/20/1971 PDF icon Download
A/RES/2850XXVI United Nations Conference on the Human Environment 12/20/1971 PDF icon Download
A/RES/2994XXVII United Nations Conference on the Human Environment 12/15/1972 PDF icon Download
A/RES/2995XXVII Co-operation between States in the field of the environment 12/15/1972 PDF icon Download
A/RES/2997XXVII Institutional and financial arrangements for international environmental co-operation 12/15/1972 PDF icon Download
A/RES/3002XXVII Development and environment 12/15/1972 PDF icon Download