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Earlier this month, the 193 Member States of the United Nations reached an agreement on the new sustainable development agenda that will be adopted this September by world leaders at the Sustainable Development Summit in New York. Countries agreed to an ambitious agenda that features 17 new sustainable development goals that in a nutshell aim to end poverty, promote prosperity and well-being while protecting the environment by 2030.

Welcoming the agreement, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said it “encompasses a universal, transformative and integrated agenda that heralds an historic turning point for our world.”

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More than 150 world leaders are expected to attend the Sustainable Development Summit in New York between from September 25th to 27th to formally adopt the  new agenda.  The new agenda builds on the success of the Millennium Development Goals, which helped more than 700 million people escape poverty. The new goals, and the broader sustainability agenda, go much further, addressing the root causes of poverty and the universal need for development that works for all people.  The preamble of the 29-page text, “Transforming Our World:  The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development”, states “We are resolved to free the human race from the tyranny of poverty and want and to heal and secure our planet.”

Sustainability

The outcome document highlights poverty eradication as the overarching goal of the new development agenda and has at its heart the integration of the economic, social and environmental aspects of sustainable development.  It urges action by all countries. Member States pledge that no one will be left behind on this journey. The 17 goals and 169 targets aim at tackling key systemic barriers to sustainable development such as inequality, unsustainable consumption and production patterns, inadequate infrastructure and lack of decent jobs.

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“Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn.” – Benjamin Franklin

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