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Brussels, 19 April 2012

Joint statement by the Danish EU Presidency and Commissioner Potočnik following the Informal Environment Council in Horsens

Amongst other things, ministers discussed the upcoming United Nations Conference in Rio 20-22 June 2012 where more than 100 heads of state and government are expected to attend the decisive, final negotiations on a global push towards green economy in the context of sustainable development and poverty eradication.

Ministers agreed that the inclusive green economy is a vehicle for achieving long term sustainable development to ensure global job creation and for eradicating poverty while safeguarding the natural resource base that our economies depend on.

Ministers also agreed that the EU and its Member States should continue to come forward with concrete and ambitious proposals in the negotiation process.

The European Commissioner for the Environment, Janez Potočnik, was delighted to see strong support for the approach suggested by the Commission which will provide a clear negotiation basis in the run up to the Rio Conference.

"An inclusive green economy will be essential for growth and poverty eradication, offering opportunities for all countries around the world and in all stages of development. Responding to the challenges of resource constraints and pressures requires us all to focus on clear goals in five "pillars of life": water, sustainable energy, oceans, land and ecosystems, and resource efficiency and waste in particular", said Janez Potočnik.

The ministers agreed that the roadmap for an inclusive green economy should be closely linked to the emerging discussions on a set of global goals for sustainable development.

President of the Environment Council of the EU, Ida Auken, stated: "Today’s discussions demonstrated that the EU and its Member States are prepared to take on global responsibility. If the EU is not united we can not act as pioneers in the transition of the global economy to an inclusive and green economy. We must show the world that sustainable development and an inclusive green economy goes hand in hand.”

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