Human Settlements & Population

ITU, UNECE Launch United for Smart Sustainable Cities Initiative [viewed]

unece_itu26 May 2016: The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) and the UN Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) have launched a global initiative to advocate for public policy that will promote the use of information and communication technologies (ICTs) as a catalyst for transitioning to "smart sustainable cities." The United for Smart Sustainable Cities (U4SSC) initiative will help implement Sustainable Development Goal 11 (SDG 11) on making cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable.

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May 2016 Climate Finance Update: Calls for Adaptation Funding, Attention to Climate Risk [viewed]

may2016_climate_finance31 May 2016: A number of international meetings that convened in May 2016 included a focus on climate finance. Carbon pricing continued to receive attention, alongside climate change planning and financing in Africa. Calls were also made to pay increased attention to the growing 'adaptation finance gap,' and climate and disaster risks, including in investments. A number of resilience projects received funding, and development banks and climate funds organized readiness workshops.

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Adaptation and Loss and Damage Update: Bonn Talks Focus on Adaptation Planning, Reporting, Implementation, Support [viewed]

who_wmo_ecosoc_fao31 May 2016: The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, with its Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and accompanying targets, has made it clear that climate change and sustainable development are inextricably linked. May 2016 news relating to adaptation and loss and damage brought out some of those interlinkages with particular prominence. Not only do events, publications and initiatives reported here contribute to the implementation of SDG 13 (Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts) generally, they also help implement a range of other SDGs and related targets.

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World Humanitarian Summit Launches Commitments to Take Action [viewed]

whs24 May 2016: During the first-ever World Humanitarian Summit (WHS), approximatively 1,500 commitments were made, including on education, the inclusion of persons with disabilities, global preparedness, preventing conflicts, delivering crisis responses and building resilience. UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, who initiated the Summit, said he will report to the UN General Assembly (UNGA) on the Summit's achievements in September 2016, and will propose ways to take the commitments forward. He announced that an annual update will review progress in implementing the Summit's commitments.

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Environmental Degradation Leading Cause of Deaths Globally, Says UN Report [viewed]

Healthy Environment - Healthy People23 May 2016: Environmental degradation and pollution cause almost a quarter of all deaths, up to 234 times as many premature deaths as occur in conflicts annually and the deaths of more than 25% of all children under the age of five, according to a UN report released to coincide with the second session of the UN Environment Assembly (UNEA-2). The report, titled ‘Healthy Environment, Healthy People,' emphasizes the importance of a healthy environment to achieving the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and addresses dangers posed by air pollution, chemicals, climate change and other issues linking environmental quality to health.

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“No Scientific Voice Left Behind,” Concludes UNEA Science-Policy Forum [viewed]

UNEA-220 May 2016: The inaugural Science-Policy Forum held prior to the second session of the UN Environment Assembly (UNEA-2) of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) discussed how to bring together diverse scientific and policy communities and citizens' voices to ensure that emerging environmental issues are highlighted and effectively addressed in the context of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

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UNEP Releases GEO-6 Regional Assessments [viewed]

GEO619 May 2016: A series of regional reports on the state of the planet's health deliver the message that environmental deterioration is occurring much faster than previously thought and action is needed now to reverse the worst trends. The ‘Global Environmental Outlook (GEO-6): Regional Assessments,' published by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), is a compilation of six reports examining environmental issues affecting the world's six regions: the Pan-European region, North America, Asia and the Pacific, West Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC), and Africa.

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World Cities Report Highlights Impacts of Planning [viewed]

UN-HABITAT18 May 2016: Two-thirds of the global population is expected to live in cities by 2030 and produce as much as 80% of global GDP, according to a UN-Habitat report released ahead of the UN Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development (Habitat III). The ‘World Cities Report 2016, Urbanization and Development: Emerging Futures' finds that while cities have become platforms for production and innovation, and lifted millions out of poverty through better jobs and improved quality of life, urbanization has also led to overcrowding, increased inequalities, and environmental and health challenges.

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UNEP Report Addresses Loss and Damage and the Role of Ecosystem Services [viewed]

UNEPMay 2016: The UN Environment Programme (UNEP) has published a report that aims to enhance understanding of climatic stressor effects on ecosystems and possible correlations and implications for societal losses and damages. The report, titled 'Loss and Damage: The Role of Ecosystem Services,' discusses climate impacts on specific ecosystem services, including on provisioning services, regulating services, supporting services and cultural services.

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GFDRR Report Calls for Transformative Approach to Assessing Risk [viewed]

risker_future_gfdrr16 May 2016: The world is unprepared for an increasing rise in disasters, resulting from climate change, rising populations and greater vulnerability of those living in big cities and unregulated housing, according to a report by the Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery (GFDRR). The report calls for a radical new approach to assessing risk that accounts for rapid changes in global disaster risk.

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