Environmental Audit Committee

21 March 2003 World Summit for Sustainable Development:

21 March 2003 World Summit for Sustainable Development:

From Rhetoric to Reality


The Environmental Audit Committee will take evidence from the following witnesses on Wednesday  26th March 2003 as part of its inquiry: World Summit for Sustainable Development: From Rhetoric to Reality.

Wednesday 26 March,  3.40pm

Ms Johanne Gélinas, Commissioner of Sustainable Development and the Environment, Office of the Auditor General of Canada

The Hon. Charles Caccia MP, Chair of the Standing Committee on Environment and Sustainable Development, House of Commons, Canada

This session will be open to the public on a first come, first served basis.  Room allocations are subject to change at short notice.  Please call the Committee Information Line on: 020 7219 2033 for confirmation nearer the time.

Notes for Editors

1. The Committee announced its inquiry: World Summit on Sustainable Development: From Rhetoric to Reality on 28 October 2002.

This inquiry is a follow-up to the EAC’s March 2002 report (HC 616-I) UK Preparations for the World Summit on Sustainable Development. The Committee also sent a small delegation to the Summit and published a separate report of its visit.

2. The World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD) took place in  August 2002 and many participating nations are now considering how to take forward the agreements included in the Plan of Implementation which was agreed there.  Through this inquiry, the EAC is examining how the UK Government plans to implement its Summit commitments.

3. In Canada, the Commissioner of the Environment and Sustainable Development is an integral, though statutorily distinct part of the Office of the Auditor General of Canada.  The Commissioner and her team investigate issues of concern to Canadians and audit how well the federal government is meeting its environmental and sustainable development commitments. Like the Auditor General, the Commissioner reports directly to the Canadian Parliament.  Her reports are then considered by the Canadian Standing Committee on Environment and Sustainable Development.

4. The Commissioner has stated her intention to track the federal Government’s efforts to develop and implement a federal plan of action and meet its WSSD commitments.  Through the Working Group on Environmental Auditing of the International Organisation of Supreme Audit Institutes (INTOSAI) the Commissioner is also looking to build a collaborative regime, along with her international counterparts, to provide for independent monitoring and reporting of progress.

5. The EAC visited Canada in 2000 as part of an audit of its first year’s work to consider how far the systems there might be relevant to its own work and circumstances.  The final report can be found at:


Details of all the Committee's inquiries, together with its Reports and other publications, are available on the internet at