Since the Stockholm Conference thirty years ago, the developed countries have come to see international equity as an unavoidable and even desirable component of efforts to protect the world's natural environment. Equity was reflected in international environmental instruments agreed during the 1980s, such as the Law of the Sea and the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer. Acceptance by the US government of international equity as an objective of global environmental policy was much more evident during the Clinton administration. In the period between the start of the Bush administration and the end of the Clinton administration, the US government's policy on international environmental equity shifted from outright opposition to partial embrace. Sustainable development became a central guiding theme of the Clinton foreign policy, consciously and publicly integrated throughout the entire foreign policy establishment. Perhaps most notable was the administration's July 1996 declaration of support for a binding international agreement to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases.