Launch of the Global Environmental Outlook Report (GEO-4)


On 25th October 2007 Stakeholder Forum launched UNEP’s flagship publication the GEO 4 in London. The launch attracted a big audience and generated a wide media coverage including The Times, The Independent, the Financial Times, BBC, Channel 4, Al Jazeera, NHK-Japan Broadcasting, Greek national radio and Sky News as well as news agencies such as Reuters and the AP. To find out more about the London launch of the GEO 4 just click below.

On 25th October 2007 Stakeholder Forum coordinated the launch of UNEP’s fourth Global Environment Outlook Report (GEO-4) in Westminster Central Hall, London. GEO-4 is a detailed and wide ranging publication that provides a complete audit of the state of the planet. It examines current progress and future challenges relating to issues of the environment and sustainability. The 500 page document contains the work of over 400 scientists and was reviewed by over 1000 peers.
Stakeholder Forum coordinated the launch of the publication in order to ensure the GEO-4 achieved global coverage. The event was extremely well attended, drawing a crowd of over 250 consisting of main stream media, environmental experts, high ranking Government officials, Business leaders, leading Civil Society actors and interested members of the public.
The day’s proceedings were kicked off by the press conference which played host to some of the biggest names in the environmental sector and was attended by large sections of the mainstream media. The press conference was hosted by Nick Nuttall, spokesperson for Achim Steiner, the Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Program. Marion Cheatle, the Deputy Director of the UNEP Early Warning and Assessment Division also spoke, as did Gareth Thomas, Parliamentary Undersecretary of State, Department for International Development and a number of the Coordinating Lead Authors.

A large cross section of the media was represented at the press conference. Print journalists ranged from The Times and The Independent to The Financial Times and The Express. Broadcasters included BBC, Channel 4, Al Jazeera, NHK-Japan Broadcasting, Greek National Radio and Sky News as well as news agencies such as Reuters and the Associated Press. Freelance journalists from various publications such as The Ecologist, the New Scientist, and Green Futures were also present. The launch of the GEO-4 dominated the front pages of the Independent, which carried the headline “Not An Environment Scare Story” and the Times, which ran with “The Earth Audit” and featured heavily in most other major newspapers, including the Guardian and the Daily Mail.

Stakeholder Forum also organised a series of five seminars which revolved around the progress, or lack thereof, since the Brundtland commission. These seminars aimed to generate debate around the future directions of environmental policy. In order for these seminars to be successful Stakeholder Forum had to ensure that the participants were of the highest level of authority within their field. In order to achieve this the seminars included contributions from; Rt Hon Michael Meacher MP (former Environment Minister), Derek Osborn (Former Chair of preparatory meetings of UN Rio+5 conference and Chairperson of Stakeholder Forum), Lawrence Bloom (strategic advisor to Nobel Cities plc), Kate Raworth (Senior Researcher—Oxfam), Mike Childs (Friends of the Earth Campaigns Director) and Camilla Toulmin (Executive Director, International Institute of Environment and Development). These seminars proved to be extremely productive and each produced a list of recommendations for action which could be used in future policy making.

The final session of the day aimed to engage with the 4 scenarios proposed by the GEO-4 Report;
‘Markets First’, ‘Policy First’, ‘Security First’ and ‘Sustainability First’. The speakers were asked to comment on the global and sub-global scenarios of the major societal pathways and their consequences for the interaction between environment and society highlighting examples from global, regional and local levels. The panel was chaired by Andrew Binns (DCG Consulting) and featured; John Sauven (Greenpeace) David Nussbaum (WWF), Tony Manwaring (Tomorrow’s Company) and Malini Mehra (Centre for Social Markets). The panel delivered an in depth and engaging critique of the four scenarios in which the “Sustainability First” scenario emerged as the favourite.



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