Agenda 21

Agenda 21

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Updated Oct 27, 2015 at 06:13PM EDT by Ari Spool.

Added Oct 27, 2015 at 06:05PM EDT by Ari Spool.

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Agenda 21 is an action plan created by the United Nations to give guidelines to localities regarding sustainable development and planning in the 21st Century. The agenda's content has often been accused by climate-change deniers and members of the Libertarian and Tea Parties of having the effect of denying countries sovereignty in making their own development decisions, especially in regards to urban sustainability.


Agenda 21 was first published as the product the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in 1993. It has since been ratified by the following conferences. The 700 page policy document, which is non-binding, gives directions that can be adapted by localities for managing the changes facing the environment through sustainable growth and planning in the areas of urban development, resource management, and pollution control. [1]

Many of the guidelines have been opposed, especially from the viewpoint of those who believe in Libertarian property rights, since the document was first released. According to the Southern Law Poverty Center, far-right conservative groups like the John Birch Society "see Agenda 21 and virtually all other global efforts as part of a nefarious plan on the part of global elites to form a socialistic one-world government, or 'New World Order.'"[2] These groups believe that Agenda 21 will result in mass sterilization and other forms of population control, the loss of all local property rights through "greenwashing", and other forms of societal brainwashing. The earliest and one of the most vocal critics was a man named Tom Deweese, who runs an organization called the American Policy Center, and who began producing anti Agenda 21 literature in the 1990s.[3][4]


Several conservative commentators have produced anti-Agenda 21 literature, most notably among them the former Fox News commentator Glenn Beck, who wrote his first anti-Agenda 21 book, titled Agenda 21 in 2012.[5] The book is a work of "dystopian science fiction," but Beck also wrote another non-fiction book about his anti-Agenda 21 beliefs, titled Agenda 21: Into the Shadows, in 2015.[6] The initial book reached number 319 in the Amazon sales category for Conspiracies, while the latter made it even higher, to number #204.[7]

Other notable authors who have written books supporting Agenda 21 include 2011's Behind the Green Mask: U.N. Agenda 21 by Rosa Koire[8] and 2012's Living with Agenda 21: Surrendering Our Freedoms by Dr. Lawrence H. Zillmer.[9]

Anti-Agenda 21 groups often call themselves "Anti-Agenders" and tend to create local network groups or gatherings. One of the largest groups is the "Resist U N Agenda 21" closed group on Facebook,[10] which has more than 1,900 members. In addition, the subreddit /r/agenda21 was created on May 24th, 2012, and has 186 members.[11] A directory of other groups anti-agenders can join is available on the Tea Party's web site.[12] The Agenda 21 Enders, a twitter profile devoted to tweeting about the conspiracy, was created in August of 2011 and has over 400 followers.[13] However, the most popular place for Anti-Agenders to convene online is YouTube, where a search for the term yields over a million results, and where over 50 of those videos have more than 100,000 views.[14]

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