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DSDS 2012: Dr Manmohan Singh Inaugurates TERI Delhi Sustainable Development Summit

Addressing the Delhi Sustainable Development Summit (DSDS) 2012 organized by TERI, Prime Minister of India Dr. Manmohan Singh called for citizens of the planet to take individual responsibilities in their own respective spheres.

India's PM Dr. Manmohan Singh at DSDS 2012New Delhi, India – The Hon’ble Prime Minister of India Dr. Manmohan Singh inaugurated the 12th Delhi Sustainable Development Summit (DSDS) 2012 organized by The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) on February 2 at the Taj Palace Hotel in New Delhi.

Over the past decade, the Delhi Sustainable Development Summit (DSDS) has evolved as a major global event that addresses the key challenges of sustainable development and explores means by which this can be attained.

In its 12th edition, DSDS will focus on the theme, ‘Protecting the Global Commons: 20 Years Post Rio’. DSDS 2012 will be the first important meeting of global leaders preceding the June 2012, Rio+20 Summit. Two decades after Rio 1992 Summit, the time is ripe to assess the progress made in protecting our planet. DSDS 2012 will examine what has been achieved and how awareness had been created; it will attempt to define new directions to be followed; and set an agenda for further action.

In his inaugural address, the Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh congratulated TERI on organizing this global forum which once again brings together eminent dignitaries, Nobel laureates, CEOs and thought leaders from across the globe. Dr. Manmohan Singh said, “I am honoured to be at the Delhi Sustainable Development Summit 2012. This year marks the 20th anniversary of the landmark Rio Earth Summit of 1992, which set out the concept of sustainability and its importance as a critical parameter of human development.”

He added, “The idea of sustainability began as a development ideal. Over time, it has become an important focus of policy, especially in developing countries as we struggle to reconcile our efforts to develop with the compelling need to protect our environment. Air pollution, industrial pollution, increasing quantum of waste and pollution of our rivers are problem we all face.”

The Prime Minister further said, “As a developing country in the frontlines of climate vulnerability, India has a vital stake in the evolution of a successful, rule-based, equitable and multilateral response to climate change.”

Present at the TERI DSDS 2012 inaugural ceremony were H.E. Ms. Tarja Halonen, President, Finland, H.E. Mr. James Alix Michel, President, Seychelles, H.E. Mr. Anote Tong, President of the Republic of Kiribati, H.E. Mr. Bharrat Jagdeo, Former President, Guyana, and H.E. Dr. Gro Harlem Brundtland, Former Prime Minister of Norway and Member of the UN Secretary General’s Sustainability Panel, Norway. Mr. Arnold Schwarzenegger, Founding Chair, R20 – Regions of Climate Change and Former Governor of California, Hon’ble Dr. Farooq Abdullah, Union Minister for New and Renewable Energy, Government of India, and Ms. Jayanthi Natarajan, Hon’ble Minister of State (I/C) for Environment and Forests, Government of India, were also present at the occasion.

H.E. Ms. Tarja Halonen, Dr. Manmohan Singh and Dr. R.K. Pachauri at DSDS 2012H.E. Ms Tarja Halonen, President, Finland, was awarded the TERI’s Sustainable Development Leadership Award for 2012 for her leadership in confronting climate change and leading her government to take the issue as a primary focus. Receiving the award, she said, “It is a great honour for me to receive this award on behalf of my country. We need a modern trinity to preserve the Global Commons. We have a duty and right to preserve the Global Commons. India and Finland have always collaborated for sustainable development. Sustainable Development is an opportunity to counter the climate change and human resource plays a very important role in the effort.”

The Sustainable Development Leadership Award is TERI’s tribute to a distinguished individual’s exemplary efforts. The Award celebrates individuals who have contributed substantially in combating challenges threatening sustainable development and encouraging initiatives which lead the planet towards a sustainable future. Some past winners of the Sustainable Development Leadership Awards are Prime Minister of India Dr. Manmohan Singh, UN Secretary General Mr. Ban Ki-Moon, and former Governor of California Mr. Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Dr. R. K. Pachauri, Director-General, TERI, in his address said, “The issue of the Global Commons has been part of global consciousness for half a century now. The Global Commons can be protected only if there is a commitment on the part of nation states to realize the tragedy inherent for all of us if we do not carry out proper protection of these. We hope this Summit and the official Rio+20 event in June of this year will mark a watershed in perceptions and priorities by which we work collectively towards a more environmentally and ecologically secure future for coming generations.”

Dr. Pachauri said, “India faces some major challenges as well as expanding opportunities. The mitigation of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions carry with it a vast range of co-benefits including higher energy security, health benefits due to lower levels of air pollution, higher agricultural yields, and many others. We need to consider these co-benefits in devising a new development strategy which would be relevant for the 21st century. One of our biggest challenges in the future would be to ensure security of energy supply. This can only be achieved through improvements in energy efficiency as well as a move to sustainable sources of energy supply.”

He further added, “We believe that India can and should develop as a model of sustainable development and become a beacon of light for the rest of the world. Gandhiji’s belief ‘Be the change you want to see in the world’, is perhaps more relevant today than it has been at any time in the past.”

The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) works towards fulfilling its vision of ‘working towards global sustainable development, creating innovative solutions for a better tomorrow’, through its flagship event the Delhi Sustainable Development Summit (DSDS). The DSDS has been held annually in New Delhi since 2001, tackling key developmental issues of the times, having emerged as the only forum on global sustainability issues, with an accentuated thrust on problems relating to the developing world. The DSDS series has enjoyed global support, from over 60 countries, attracting participation from Heads of government and ministers, and a host of other dignitaries comprising Nobel laureates, development practitioners, scientists, academics and corporate leaders.

The 12th Edition of DSDS allows for the enthusiasm of the young to mesh well with the wisdom of the learned. The YUVA (Youth Unites for Voluntary Action) Meet at DSDS 2012 brought together the brightest young minds from across international and national borders to spin webs exchanging knowledge about the best means to be adopted in preserving the ‘Global Commons’. The YUVA Meet 2012 under the theme of ‘Conserving Global Commons: Transforming Knowledge into Action’ aimed at engaging the youth, recognizing the fact that all articulation in the discourse on preserving the environment stands to benefit from the acceptance and action of the young.

Over 20 Special events will be organized on the sidelines of the Summit. Consistent with and central to the main theme of DSDS 2012, these platforms will provide an opportunity to distinguished speakers and area experts to discuss niche topics.

To follow updates of DSDS 2012, visit http://dsds.teriin.org/2012/

About DSDS

The DSDS (Delhi Sustainable Development Summit) has been the flagship conference of TERI since 2001. It is a global forum that seeks to provide long-term solutions to protect this planet. Held annually, DSDS is the only event of its kind in the world with participation by global stakeholders – multilateral and bilateral development organizations, governments, the corporate sector, non-governmental organizations, and academic and research institutions. Now globally esteemed as a credible summit on global issues related to sustainable development, it continues to provide hope to communities lagging behind on development indicators.

About: The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI)

Headed by world-renowned economist and Head of the Nobel Prize winning UN Climate panel, Dr. R. K. Pachauri, The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) is best described as an independent, not-for-profit research institute focused on energy, environment, and sustainable development and devoted to efficient and sustainable use of natural resources.

A dynamic and flexible organization established in 1974, all activities in TERI move from formulating local and national level strategies to suggesting global solutions to critical energy and environment-related issues. Headquartered in New Delhi, TERI has established regional offices in Mumbai, Bangalore, Goa, Guwahati and Mukhteshwer in the Himalaya’s and International centers in Japan, Malaysia, the United Arab Emirates, Washington DC, London and Utrecht, The Netherlands. For more information, visit www.teriin.org.

Source: The Energy and Resources Institute (Business Wire India).

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