NGO Lobbying at the Commission on Sustainable Development


The United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development (CSD) was created in December 1992 to ensure effective follow-up of the commitments of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (Rio 1992); to monitor and report on implementation of the Earth Summit agreements at the local, national, regional and international levels. The CSD is a functional commission of the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), with 53 members.

Since 2003 CSD has a multi-year programme of work organized on the basis of seven two-year cycles, with each cycle focusing on selected thematic clusters of issues.

The role of the Commission as a high level forum on sustainable development, includes:

  • to review progress at the international, regional and national levels in the implementation of recommendations and commitments contained in the final documents of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED), namely: Agenda 21; and the Rio Declaration on Environment and Development.

  • to elaborate policy guidance and options for future activities to follow up the Johannesburg Plan of Implementation and achieve sustainable development

  • to promote dialogue and build partnerships for sustainable development with governments, the international community and the major groups identified in Agenda 21 as key actors outside the central government who have a major role to play in the transition towards sustainable development. These Major Groups include women, youth, indigenous peoples, non-governmental organizations, local authorities, workers and trade unions, business and industry, the scientific community, and farmers