Poor environmental conditions would increase human health risks, warns a study jointly conducted by the World Resource Institute (WRI), the United Nations Development Programme, the United Nations Environment Programme and the World Bank. The WRI 1998-99 report, titled 'Environmental Change and Human Health', says that despite vast improvements in human health and longer life spans, premature deaths due to environmental causes are occurring in high numbers in developing countries. An estimated one in five children in the developing world will not survive for more than five years primarily because of environment related diseases and ailments.

The governing council has directed the United Nations Environment Programme to cut its administrative costs and divert the savings accruing from it and other available funds to environment programmes in developing countries. The council also called upon to build linkages with regional offices for finalising the core programmes to be more responsive to the needs of the people in the region. An India delegation that met the Commission on Sustainable Development, drew attention to declining resources for development and stressed the need to honour commitments relating to transfer of technology and provision of enough financial resources to developing countries without delay.

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