Divided We Fail To Deliver

Divided We Fail To Deliver

I cannot stop myself from delivering a little lecture – more an alert – to none other than the United Nations. How much more could be achieved if our only truly international body – for the good of all people and the planet  - showed more signs of willingness to work with the private sector, with the many worthy not-for-profit organisations and engage with business and the media to more effectively communicate what it’s up to?

I have referred before to the “Sustainable Energy for All Campaign” which, in my view, failed to deliver because it did not effectively engage with relevant businesses, NGOs or media. Is the latest – the Sustainable Public Procurement (SPP) Programme – heading in the same direction?  Read More

The SPP Programme, the first action to get underway as part of the 10-Year Framework of Programmes on Sustainable Consumption and Production (10YFP), is reported in this issue, looks like it has not attempted to bring on board existing and relevant organisations. The International Green Purchasing Network (IGPN), for example, which has been going for the best part of ten years – largely under the patronage of the Japanese agencies – and is representative of at least 20 countries/economies around the world.  It has been effective in spreading the word on sustainable purchasing and procurement, so much so that a number of Asian countries, like Japan, have introduced “green” procurement policies into law. Yet, in spite of the fact that UN representatives have been on the IGPN advisory board, there doesn’t seem to be any attempt by UN to draw on the effective Network or work with its officers.

We just learn this week that the IGPN  HQ office in Tokyo  will no longer get support from Japan Fund for Global Environment and will have to source for funding elsewhere. As a more recent member of the Network – based in Singapore – I welcome the opportunity to trumpet the cause of green purchasing, sustainable procurement and supply chains. This newsletter issue, which focuses its attention on these various issues and opportunities, is an example of this. I have attended and spoken at IGPN events in Kuala Lumpur and Taipei, and I was recently asked to speak about “Green Procurement & Leadership” at a well-attended Singapore event, which I also report on in this issue. I am more than happy to wave the IGPN flag, just as I carry its logo on this newsletter, and reach out to all – UN included – to give support to a movement that addresses the very serious issues relating to consumption, green growth, responsible production, purchasing and procurement, and getting supply chains to be more sustainable in every way.  – Ken Hickson

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