The following material builds on the action group description at the ASIS Project Website (

These theses are being proposed for discussion at the Stuttgart conference which will take place from 27-28th July 1999. Comments on this draft are appreciated; when submitting them, please cite not only the Item No. but also the version date at the bottom of this page, as the list may grow or shrink with time. As soon as enough comments have been received using one-to-one e-mail, the chairperson Thomas Ruddy ( will arrange for further discussion on a one-to-many basis.

  1. Computer networks, along with lower transport costs, are helping make possible the current "globalization" of the economy.
  2. Information and communication technology ICT, though, can also contribute toward sustainable development. Nonetheless, throughout history the potential of technology has proven limited because unanticipated counterproductive effects set in eventually. We expect that guardrails in the international economic framework would help to channel the power of technology more appropriately (see also the 1998 Status Report: Towards a sustainable information society and the Item below headed "Guardrails").
    For instance, the emergence of the personal computer appeared to require fewer resources than mainframes had, until more of the former were demanded by a growing public, thus boosting production of them and causing greater environmental stress than before. Likewise, instead of the "paperfree office" envisioned by technophiles, paper consumption rose.

  3. One of the ways that computers can contribute toward sustainable development is through more efficient resource allocation.
    For instance, many types of markets benefit from ICT networks, whether they be a market in a rural village in the developing world where farmers learn to check for the prevailing price level by telephone, or the market for futures trading in Chicago.

  4. In the field of climate policy, parties to the FCCC and Kyoto Protocol with considerable differences in their potentials for abatement could benefit from the more efficient resource allocation attainable through emissions trading.
    For instance, in the European Union's bubble Germany has a stringent emissions reduction goal and Portugal a lax one. Internationally the United States could trade with the Ukraine. Payments for hot air under emissions trading should be applied to environmental clean-up, as suggested by Simon Upton, Minister of the Environment in New Zealand at A group of German economists under Prof. Dr.Ewers, many of them macroeconomists and environmental economists, published a statement advocating the use of tradeable permits at

  5. The European Union should not at this time insist on its cap on emissions trading as versus domestic measures, a position which might jeopardize ratification of the treaty.

  6. It is our hope that with the passage of time and further advance of climate science, the U.S. Senate will learn that the cost-efficiency of climate change abatement is acceptable, and consent to significant reductions beyond those currently laid down in the Protocol.

  7. Likewise it is a further hope of ours that the G-77 countries, China and India will be brought onboard by the attraction of the other flexibility mechanisms to be set up under the Kyoto Protocol, Joint Implementation JI and the Clean Development Mechanism CDM.
    We see JI and the CDM as sources of important additions to Official Development Assistance ODA, the amount of which has been declining steadily since 1984. The current initial allocation of property rights (necessarily to the benefit of the North far below the per capita level) and emission budgets (to the benefit of the South allowing indexing to developing countries' GDP as described at under the Protocol is to be regarded as a provisional means of starting the world's process of learning to implement it, and not as final allocations.

  8. Not only projects that contribute toward GreenHouse Gas GHG abatement directly should qualify under JI and CDM projects, but also those that contribute indirectly should also be given consideration in the future as means toward sustainable development.
    For instance, construction of telecommunication networks, traffic control systems, installation of computerized controls to improve the efficiency of combustion processes in industrial and residential applications.
  9. As we understand our role to be that, not merely of an advocacy group, but of a constructive force, we invite innovators in our midst, especially corporate members, to develop jointly empirical methods to measure the beneficial effects of such projects as those referred to in the previous item, and to test those methods in pilot projects, so that transactable permits could eventually be derived from them at some time in the future.
  10. Guardrails are needed in the international economic framework to counteract possible abuses arising from application of the power of globalization to help lift the developing world out of poverty. Progress in globalization of the economy requires a partial transfer of sovereignty from nation-states to international regimes representing progress in global governance.
    For further reading on global governance, see the books by YOUNG and REINICKE in Bibliography.
  11. The trade regime developing at the World Trade Organization WTO (and soon at the new World Environment Organization) should demand respect throughout the world for certain minimum, basic or core standards intended to prevent abusive practices that might otherwise be suggested to persons following economic incentives in the absence of commonly acknowledged environmental ethics and human rights.  As for the latter, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights shall serve as a basis,
    The most blatant forms of environmental degradation still require articulation; the UDHR, for instance,  prohibits child labour; instead, it ensures the right to a basic education and the right of workers to organize themselves in trade unions.
  12. Countries wishing to benefit from technology transfer through JI and CDM should declare their agreement with core standards, and enforce core standards in their countries.
  13. We desire publication of these theses at COP5 in Bonn and Expo2000 ( in Hannover, Germany.