Sustainable development is top priority for the UN

Fri, 27/01/12

Sustainable development will be the top priority for the United Nations over the next five years. That’s according to the UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon who recently announced his five-point action plan to the UN General Assembly in New York.

The UN will aim is to achieve sustainable development through a number of measures - progressing the Millennium Development Goals, combating climate change and forging and implementing a post-2015 sustainable development framework

In his speech Mr Ban explained: “Environmental, economic and social indicators tell us that our current model of progress is unsustainable.  Climate change is destroying our path to sustainability.  Ours is a world of looming challenges and increasingly limited resources.   Sustainable development offers the best chance to adjust our course.  That is why I placed this challenge at the top of the list.

He went on to say: “Sustainable development will also depend on addressing climate change.  At Durban last month, countries agreed on a timetable for a binding accord in which all nations would pledge to reduce emissions.  We have a collective responsibility to deliver by 2015.  But Mother Nature will not wait while we negotiate. Over the next five years we must facilitate mitigation and adaptation action on the ground, including on REDD+.  We must operationalize the Green Climate Fund and set public and private funds on a trajectory to reach the agreed $100 billion by 2020.  I will also work with Member States to promote evidence-based policy. We need to act on the scientific facts.”

Mr. Ban also announced that the UN will work with Member States to make Antarctica a World Nature Preserve. Other priorities outlined in the speech were:
•    Prevention of impacts from disasters, violent conflict, human rights violations and financial and economic problems.
•    Building a safer and more secure world
•    Supporting nations in transition
•    Working with and for women and children.

Mr Ban concluded his speech stating; “Now is our moment. Now is our time to create the future we want.

For more information see the Secretary-General’s ‘Five year action agenda’.