Sustainable Development

This section covers issues related to the mainstreaming of climate change issues in development processes, as well as the way the impacts of climate change may hinder progress towards achieving development goals. Activities related to the UN Commission on Sustainable Development and follow-up to the World Summit on Sustainable Development are highlighted in this section.

DESA Publishes Special Studies on Post-2015 Summit Dialogues [viewed]

post2015_summitAugust 2015: Background papers have been made available for each of the six themes for the interactive dialogues during the UN summit for the adoption of the post-2015 development agenda. The six themes were agreed during the fifth session of the intergovernmental negotiation process on the post-2015 development agenda, on 22 May 2015. The papers, also listed as special studies, are published on the Sustainable Development Knowledge Platform managed by the Division for Sustainable Development at the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA).

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FAO, UNDP Raise Profile of Agriculture in Climate Change Adaptation Planning [viewed]

fao_headquarters1 September 2015: The Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO) and the UN Development Programme (UNDP) have launched a four-year 'Integrating Agriculture in National Adaptation Plans' (NAPs) programme, which aims to incorporate eight developing countries' agricultural sectors into NAPs in order to safeguard livelihoods, raise agricultural production and boost food security.

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UN Officials Urge Parliamentarian Support for SDGs, Climate Agreement [viewed]

Ipu31 August 2015: Addressing the Fourth World Conference of Speakers of Parliament, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called on parliamentarians to help advance the post-2015 development agenda and ensure an equal footing for civil society in its implementation. He stressed parliamentarians' role in ensuring the agenda is “translated from the global to the national,” and that implementing and monitoring the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) will require strong and close partnership between states and civil society.

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World Water Week Closes with Calls to “Hydrate” Global Climate Agreement [viewed]

siwi_www28 August 2015: At the close of World Water Week in Stockholm, Sweden, world leaders called on climate negotiators to ensure that water issues are paid due attention in the global climate agreement to be concluded in December 2015 in Paris, France.

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UN Secretary-General Visits Nigeria, Discusses 2030 Agenda [viewed]

bankimoon-warsaw24 August 2015: During an official visit to Nigeria, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon discussed ways in which state governors can contribute to implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. He also met with Nigeria's business and philanthropy leaders to address their role in implementing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and addressing climate change. The visit took place from 23-24 August 2015, in Abuja, Nigeria.

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Event: Meeting of Senior Government Officials Expert in Environmental Law on the Midterm Review of the Montevideo Programme IV [viewed]

The meeting of senior government officials expert in environmental law on the midterm review of the fourth Programme for the Development and Periodic Review of Environmental Law (Montevideo Programme IV), which is being convened by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), will bring together experts in the field of environmental law from governments, as well as various organizations. The meeting is expected to address, among other things: the midterm review of the implementation and effectiveness of the Montevideo Programme IV; emerging issues in the field of environmental law, in particular in the Montevideo Programme IV programme areas; and priority areas for action in the field of environmental law for the period up to 2020, taking into account the Montevideo Programme IV.

The mid-term review, carried out in a consultative and participatory manner, is expected to assess progress in delivering the Montevideo Programme, as well as shortcomings, gaps and expected future developments. It will also provide an opportunity to: reassess further development and implementation of environmental law in light of new developments and emerging trends; highlight opportunities for improving synergies and coherence of policies and actions across the international community in the field of environmental law; and provide a platform for sharing experiences and facilitating a coordinated approach among a range of actors to facilitate the implementation of internationally agreed environmental objectives and goals through actions in environmental law. The outcomes of the meeting and the review will be reported to the UN Environment Assembly (UNEA) at its second session in 2016.

The UNEP Governing Council (since transformed into the UNEA) adopted he Montevideo Programme IV in February 2009, as a strategy for the international law community and UNEP in formulating activities in the environmental law field for the decade commencing in 2010.  

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Event: 21st Senior Officials Meeting of the EMG [viewed]

The 21st senior officials meeting of the Environmental Management Group (EMG) (SOM-21) will be held in conjunction with the 70th Session of the UN General Assembly (UNGA) and the UN Sustainable Development Summit 2015. The meeting is intended to provide an opportunity to strategize and come up with a common message on how the UN system intends to support countries in achieving the environmental sustainability dimension of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which are expected to be adopted at the Summit. In a note regarding the Meeting, Achim Steiner, UNEP Executive Director and EMG Chair, proposed that the EMG discuss, among other things: UN system wide strategies so that the UN system can contribute to the environmental sustainability dimension of the SDGs; maximizing the EMG's effectiveness to be fit for purpose in the context of the post-2015 development agenda; and the EMG's role in coordinating UN system wide support for implementing the SDGs, including monitoring and reviewing progress of the environmental dimension. He also proposed the following modalities for the meeting's organization, including a technical preparatory segment and a senior officials segment, with the technical segment expected to meet twice prior to SOM-21 on 9 September by audio conference and on 21 September in person in New York.

Also in preparation for SOM-21, the second mid-term technical segment meeting of senior EMG officials convened on 6 May 2015, with the aim of providing an update on progress made by the EMG since SOM20, and initiating a discussion on strategic and possible future issues for consideration and inclusion in the EMG 2016-2017 Programme of Work. SOM-21 will be hosted by the UN Development Programme (UNDP).  

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Stockholm World Water Week Focuses on Water for Development [viewed]

SIWI24 August 2015: World Water Week, organized by the Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI), marks its silver jubilee in Stockholm, Sweden, with a focus on water for development. SIWI notes that, although considerable progress has been made towards the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), the targets to achieve improved access to key basic services during the first 15 years of this century will not be fully reached. It adds that about one billion people worldwide still lack access to safe water, and a higher number lack access to basic sanitation.

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IMF, USAID to Cooperate on Capacity Development [viewed]

imf_usaid20 August 2015: The US Agency for International Development (USAID) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to enhance their cooperation in capacity development.

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Event: Fifth Climate Change and Development Conference (CCDA-V) [viewed]

To support Africa's preparedness for the 21st session of the Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP21), CCDA-V will be held on the theme “Africa, climate change and sustainable development: what is at stake at Paris and beyond?”. The conference will be the culmination of climate change dialogues across the continent and will focus on addressing the climate change, sustainable development and equity issues provided for in Article 2 of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in the context of the broad theme on “Prospects for Sustainable, Resilient and Creative Economies in Africa in the Context of a Changing Climate”. CCDA-V aims to, among other things, contribute towards the development of common African positions regarding the post-Kyoto global climate governance regime, as well as anticipate the outcomes of COP21 and initiate preparations for their implementation. The event is organized under the auspices of the Climate for Development in Africa (ClimDev-Africa) Programme, which is a consortium of the African Union Commission (AUC), the UN Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) and the African Development Bank (AfDB).  

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