IIED marks 40 years with report launch, opening of London office

The International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED), today marks four decades of research to identify policies that meet people’s needs, while sustaining the environment upon which all good development depends.

To celebrate the day, the institute will also launch its latest annual report and will have its new offices in London opened by Stephen O’Brien MP and the parliamentary under-secretary of state for international development.

Announcing its 40 years of existence through a press statement, the institute said “Partnerships are key to the way IIED works. By forging alliances with individuals and organisations ranging from urban slum dwellers to global institutions, IIED ensures that national and international policy reflects the agendas of marginalised people.”

Commenting on the institute’s work, IIED’s director, Camilla Toulmin, said “The past forty years have seen recognition of environmental constraints move from marginal to mainstream, a great achievement in itself.”

“But nothing stands still and now there is a host of new barriers to progress being erected, such as the shift in the climate change arena from science to ideology based decision-making. We cannot shy away from our responsibility to achieve tangible improvements to planetary sustainability alongside greater prosperity for poorer people,” she added.

Further, IIED Parliamentary Partners — Joan Walley, MP, Sir Peter Bottomley, MP and Andrew George MP, have tabled a motion in the House of Commons.

The motion “commends IIED’s effective blend of evidence, action and influence in partnership with others, linking local solutions to global policy-making; and believes that IIED’s work is needed more than ever as governments try to face up to the inter-connected challenges of economic crisis, climate change, poverty and increasing pressure on water, forests and land.”

In the past 40 years IIED has worked with partners in more than 100 countries and together effected change at local, national and global levels.

The institute was launched in 1971 by renowned economist and policy advisor, Barbara Ward. It was among the first organisations to link environment with development and played key roles in the Stockholm Conference of 1972, the Brundtland Commission of 1987, the 1992 Earth Summit and the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development.

IIED is now helping to shape the global debates on climate change, forests, biodiversity and the green economy

By Edmund Smith-Asante.

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