Consultation Framework for Sustainable Development for Ireland

The Minister for the Environment. Community and Local Government, Mr Phil Hogan, has launched a new draft Framework for Sustainable Development for Ireland for public consultation.

Sustainable development is a continuous, guided process of economic, environmental and social change aimed at promoting wellbeing of citizens now and in the future. While considerable progress has been made in integrating sustainable principles into public policy making in Ireland since the first national strategy in this area was published in 1997, significant gaps remain across a range of economic, social and environmental policy areas. Drawing on the model established by the EU Sustainable Development Strategy, the draft Framework for Sustainable Development concentrates on gaps where limited progress has been made and which still present formidable challenges.

The Framework will form a central element of Ireland’s contribution to the UN Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20) which takes place in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in June 2012. This major conference marks the 20th anniversary of the 1992 UN Conference on Environment and Development (the Earth Summit).. The objective of the conference is to secure renewed political commitment for sustainable development, assess the progress to date and identify the remaining gaps in the implementation of the outcomes of the major summits on sustainable development.

The objectives of the draft Framework are to identify and prioritise policy areas and mechanisms where a sustainable development approach will add value and enable continuous improvement of quality of life for current and future generations and set out clear measures, responsibilities and timelines in an implementation plan.

This draft Framework broadly follows the thematic approach of the EU Sustainable Development Strategy and includes:

  • Sustainability of public finances and economic resilience
  • Sustainable consumption and production
  • Conservation and management of natural resources
  • Climate change and clean energy
  • Sustainable agriculture
  • Sustainable transport
  • Social inclusion, sustainable communities and spatial planning
  • Public health
  • Education, communication and behaviour change
  • Innovation, research and development
  • Skills and training
  • Global poverty and sustainable development

You are invited to submit any comments or observations to Kevin Greene, (Tel.: 003531 888 2278; email:, Environment International and Sustainable Development Unit, Department of Environment, Community and Local Government by close of business on Wednesday 29 February 2012.

» see Draft Framework for Sustainable Development in Ireland (pdf, 521kb)

Please note that all submissions and comments submitted to the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government for this purpose are subject to release under the Freedom of Information Acts 1997 and 2003.

Source: – Consultation Framework for Sustainable Development for Ireland