Improving regional clearing-houses for scientific cooperation on the environment
Agenda 21 recommends that existing national, subregional, regional and international information systems should be developed and linked through regional clearing-houses covering broad-based sectors of the economy such as agriculture, industry and energy. Such a network might, [inter alia], include national, subregional and regional patent offices that are equipped to produce reports on state-of-the-art technology. The international and regional clearing-houses would take the initiative in helping users to identify their needs and in disseminating information that meets those needs, including the use of existing news, public information and communication systems. The disseminated information would highlight and detail concrete cases where environmentally sound technology was successfully developed and implemented. In order to be effective, the clearing-houses need to provide not only information, but also referrals to other services, including sources of advice, training, technology and technology assessment. The clearing-houses would thus facilitate the establishment of joint ventures and partnerships of various kinds.
This strategy features in the framework of Agenda 21 as formulated at UNCED (Rio de Janeiro, 1992), now coordinated by the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development and implemented through national and local authorities.
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