Liblink: Nick Clegg – Rio’s reprise must set hard deadlines for development

Liberal Democrat leader and Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg has written for the Guardian about the Rio+20 summit he’s attending. He says that it’s vital that we “revive the spirit of our predecessors to get the world on a much more sustainable path”.

He spelled out the consequences if we don’t act:

Too many people still lack food: tonight, one billion will go hungry. There isn’t enough clean energy: right now women in some of the poorest communities are fuelling their homes with tyres and plastics. Despite the noxious fumes produced, they rely on anything that will burn. Dirty water and poor sanitation kill a child every 30 seconds.

These aren’t someone else’s problems. We have a moral duty to help prevent this suffering, and we all share responsibility for the planet we leave behind. And in a global economy, resource scarcity affects everyone: food costs more; heating bills rise; far-flung conflicts drive extremism on our streets. In just 40 years the earth’s population could increase by a staggering two billion. What will happen if there isn’t enough food, water or energy for all those people? There’ll be greater poverty, worse disease, more war – and we will all bear the cost.

He outlines three things he wants the summit to do:

  • nations to broaden their understanding of wealth
  • the summit to set out a plan for the future
  • bring business on board

You can read the article in full here.

Meanwhile, the Liberal Democrat leader has sent out a brief e-mail to members and supporters giving a link to the Guardian article and inviting them to sign up for daily updates from him in Brazil. Pleasingly, they even filled in the registration details for you.

* Caron Lindsay is Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice and blogs at Caron's Musings

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