Chapter 7 - Promoting Sustainable Human Settlement Development

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Posted by kelphead on July 10, 2001 at 18:52:43:

In Reply to: Re: Kelphead, how extensively have you travelled the planet? posted by kelphead on July 08, 2001 at 00:57:21:

taken from:


This is a final, advanced version of a chapter of
Agenda 21, as adopted by the Plenary in Rio de
Janeiro, on June 14, 1992. This document will be
further edited, translated into the official
languages, and published by the United Nations
for the General Assembly this autumn.


7.1 In industrialized countries, the consumption patterns of cities are severely
stressing the global ecosystem while settlements in the developing world need
more raw material, energy, and economic development simply to overcome basic
economic and social problems. Human settlement conditions in many parts of
the world, particularly the developing countries are deteriorating mainly as a
result of the low levels of investments in the sector attributable to the overall
resource constraints in these countries. In the low-income countries for which
recent data are available, an average of only 5.6 per cent of central government
expenditure went to housing, amenities, social security and welfare. 1/
Expenditure by international support and finance organizations is equally low. For
example, only 1 per cent of the United Nations system's total grant-financed
expenditures in 1988 went to human settlements 2/ while in 1991, loans from the
World Bank and the International Development Association (IDA) for urban
development and water supply and sewerage amounted to 5.5 and 5.4 per cent,
respectively, of their total lending. 3/

7.2 On the other hand, available information indicates that technical cooperation
activities in the human settlement sector generate considerable public and
private sector investment. For example, every dollar of UNDP technical
cooperation expenditure on human settlements in 1988 generated a follow-up
investment of $ 122, the highest of all UNDP sectors of assistance. 4/

7.3 This is the foundation of the "enabling approach" advocated for the human
settlement sector. External assistance will help to generate the internal
resources needed to improve the living and working environments of all people
by the year 2000 and beyond, including the growing number of unemployed - the
no-income group. At the same time the environmental implications of urban
development should be recognized and addressed in an integrated fashion by all
countries with high priority being given to the needs of the urban and rural poor,
the unemployed and the growing number of people without any source of income.

Human settlement objective

7.4 The overall human settlement objective is to improve the social, economic
and environmental quality of human settlements and the living and working
environments of all people, in particular the urban and rural poor. Such
improvement should be based on technical cooperation activities, partnerships
among the public, private and community sectors and participation in the
decision making process from community groups and special interest groups
such as women, indigenous people, the elderly and the disabled. These
approaches should form the core principles of national settlement strategies. In
developing these strategies, countries will need to set priorities among the eight
programme areas in this document in accordance with their national plans and
objectives taking fully into account their social and cultural capabilities.
Furthermore, countries should make appropriate provision to monitor the impact
of their strategies on marginalized and disenfranchised groups with particular
reference to the needs of women.

7.5 The programme areas included in this chapter are:

A. Providing adequate shelter for all;

B. Improving human settlement management;

C. Promoting sustainable land use planning and management;

D. Promoting the integrated provision of environmental infrastructure: water,
sanitation, drainage, hazardous and solid waste management;

E. Promoting sustainable energy and transport systems in human settlements;

F. Promoting human settlement planning and management in disaster-prone

G. Promoting sustainable construction industry activities;

H. Promoting human resource development and capacity-building for human
settlement development.

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