pollution

Spotlight on Sustainable Development 2021: Demanding Justice Beyond Rhetoric

Policy responses to the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting economic crisis have exacerbated rather than reduced global inequalities. The most visible example of this is the global disparity in the distribution of vaccines. So far more than 60 percent of people in high-income countries have received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine, but less than 2 percent have done so in low-income countries. In view of this dramatic disparity, the “leave no one behind” mantra of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development remains hollow. In fact, the vested interests of economic elites continue to dominate political decision-making. Given the urgency of the COVID-19 crisis and the other unresolved global problems, most notably the climate emergency, it is high time for transformative policies, strategies and structural changes.

This year’s Spotlight on Sustainable Development Report describes the highly uneven socio-economic impact of the COVID-19 crisis and analyses the policy responses to it. It explores beyond the rhetoric, highlighting deepening inequalities, self-serving and hypocritical policies and governance failures at national and international level. Addressing the imbalance in global vaccine production and distribution, the report also examines a few key areas where political and structural changes are necessary to correct the limited and asymmetric recovery. With this virtual launching event, we will present key findings of the report.

Brief snapshots by:

  • K.M. Gopakumar, Third World Network
  • Vanita Mukherjee, Development Alternatives with Women for a New Era (DAWN)
  • Roberto Bissio, Social Watch

Policy conclusions by:

  • Kate Donald, Center for Economic and Social Right
  • Daria Cibrario, Public Services International (PSI)
  • Isabel Ortiz,Global Social Justice

Moderators:

  • Bodo Ellmers, Global Policy Forum
  • María Graciela Cuervo, Development Alternatives with Women for a New Era (DAWN)

Register here: rsvp.globalpolicy.org/report-launch-spotlight-on-sustainable-development-2021-demanding-justice-beyond-rhetoric.

Participants will receive the login details one day before the event. Further information on the Spotlight Report 2021 will be available shortly at www.2030spotlight.org

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-NY, please visit ngocsd-ny.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-Vienna, please visit congocsd.wordpress.com. For more information on the NGO Committee on Financing for Development, please visit ngosonffd.org.

Art and Climate: Creative Tools to Shape the Climate Discourse

Join the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens for the penultimate session of our Climate Justice Webinar Series with the Center for Feminist Foreign Policy!

In the 6th edition of the series, we are welcoming Yessenia Funes, Climate Editor of Atmos Magazine, Finn Harries, Co-founder of Earthrise Studio and Henry McGhie, Founder of Curating Tomorrow, Reimagining Museums for Climate Action.

This webinar will explore the intersections of art, activism, creatives and environmental justice for effective climate awareness strategies. We will discuss art and design-based methods to engage more people in the climate discourse and reimagine our relationship with nature.

Register here: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_FwyZVVGPSjiSnXv0wgNKXQ

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, please visit facebook.com/NGOCoRIP. For more information on the NGO Committee on the Status of Women-NY, please visit ngocsw.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on the Status of Women-Geneva, please visit ngocsw-geneva.ch. For more information on the NGO Committee on the Status of Women-Vienna, please visit ngocswvienna.org.

From Words to Action: The UN Secretary General’s “Our Common Agenda” Report

The UN Secretary-General’s much anticipated “Our Common Agenda” report will be presented to the General Assembly on Friday, September 10 2021 at 10am EDT.

Watch live on UN webTV at 10:00 am EDT here: media.un.org/en/webtv

The report follows the UN75 Declaration, adopted September 21 2020, when member states commemorating the 75th anniversary of the United Nations promised to fulfill 12 key commitments across the global agenda and mandated the Secretary-General “to report back with recommendations to advance our common agenda and to respond to current and future challenges.”

Reflecting the importance of the Our Common Agenda report, the Secretary-General’s office initiated preparations earlier this year that included consultations with Member States, youth representatives, UN officials, academic experts and civil society. The report on the “We the Peoples” online consultations with civil society, which generated 523 proposals for a stronger UN from 1,759 participants from 147 countries, will also be released September 10.

In a letter sent to UN missions in August, Maria Fernanda Espinosa, Co-Chair of the Coalition for the UN We Need (C4UN) and Danilo Türk, President of the Club de Madrid called on world leaders at the upcoming General Assembly High-level segment to reinforce the necessity of collective action to strengthen multilateralism.

According to Espinosa, “We recognize that responding to the challenges and threats posed by the COVID-19 pandemic is the overriding priority for governments around the world. But the pandemic also reinforces the social solidarity and awareness of humanity’s shared need to strengthen global cooperation.”

Upcoming C4UN communications will provide additional information and analysis on the Common Agenda report as well as events in September and October where the reports recommendations will be discussed in greater detail. Read the Regional Consultations report here.

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-NY, please visit ngocsd-ny.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-Vienna, please visit ngocsdvienna.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Human Rights, please email the co-chairs at bknotts@uua.org or bobbinassar@gmail.com. For more information on the NGO Committee on Disarmament, Peace, and Security, please visit ngocdps.wordpress.com.

The Southeast Asia Nuclear Weapon-Free Zone Treaty: Protocol and the Way Forward

The Southeast Asia Nuclear Weapon-Free Zone Treaty (SEANWFZ Treaty) was signed in Bangkok on 15 December 1995 by 10 Southeast Asian States (ASEAN Member States) and entered into force on 27 March 1997, committing the region to nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation in line with the 1971 Declaration on the Zone of Peace, Freedom and Neutrality (ZOPFAN). The webinar falls under the implementation of Action 5 of United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres’ Agenda for Disarmament: Securing Our Common Future, which aims to strengthen and consolidate nuclear-weapon-free zones, including by facilitating enhanced cooperation and consultation between existing zones, encouraging nuclear-weapon States (NWS) to adhere to the relevant protocols to the treaties establishing such zones.

Co-organized by the United Nations Office for Disarmament Affairs and the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies (CNS) of the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey, this event aims to raise awareness on the issue of the SEANWFZ Treaty and to generate ideas for accelerating the signing and ratification of the Protocol to the Treaty by the NWS.

The webinar is open for participation by New York, Geneva and Vienna-based diplomats, academia and representatives of civil society. Speakers will engage in a moderated discussion representing different perspectives on the challenges surrounding implementation of the SEANWFZ, followed by a Q&A session with the audience.

Register here!

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Disarmament, Peace, and Security, please visit ngocdps.wordpress.com. For more information on the NGO Committee on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, please visit facebook.com/NGOCoRIP.

International Day Against Nuclear Tests

Since nuclear weapons testing began on 16 July 1945, over 2,000 have taken place. In the early days of nuclear testing little consideration was given to its devastating effects on human life, let alone the dangers of nuclear fallout from atmospheric tests. Hindsight and history have shown us the terrifying and tragic effects of nuclear weapons testing, especially when controlled conditions go awry, and in light of the far more powerful and destructive nuclear weapons that exist today.

On 2 December 2009, the 64th session of the United Nations General Assembly declared 29 August the International Day against Nuclear Tests by unanimously adopting resolution 64/35. The resolution calls for increasing awareness and education “about the effects of nuclear weapon test explosions or any other nuclear explosions and the need for their cessation as one of the means of achieving the goal of a nuclear-weapon-free world.” The resolution was initiated by the Republic of Kazakhstan, together with a large number of sponsors and cosponsors with a view to commemorating the closure of the Semipalatinsk Nuclear Test site on 29 August 1991.

2010 marked the inaugural commemoration of the International Day against Nuclear Tests. In each subsequent year, the day has been observed by coordinating various activities throughout the world, such as symposia, conferences, exhibits, competitions, publications, lectures, media broadcasts and other initiatives.

Since its establishment, many bilateral and multilateral governmental level developments as well as broad movements in civil society have helped to advance the cause of banning nuclear tests.

Moreover, “convinced that nuclear disarmament and the total elimination of nuclear weapons are the only absolute guarantee against the use or threat of nuclear weapons,” the General Assembly designated 26 September as the “International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons”, which is devoted to furthering the objective of the total elimination of nuclear weapons, through the mobilization of international efforts. The International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons was observed for the first time in September 2014. The International Day against Nuclear Tests, together with other events and actions, has fostered a global environment that strongly advocates for a world free of nuclear weapons.

The international instrument to put an end to all forms of nuclear testing is the 1996 Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT). Unfortunately, this has yet to enter into force.

As the Secretary-General recognized in his disarmament agenda “Securing our Common Future” launched on 24 May 2018, the norm against testing is an example of a measure that serves both disarmament and non-proliferation objectives. By constraining the development of advanced new types of nuclear weapons, the CTBT puts a brake on the arms race. It also serves as a powerful normative barrier against potential States that might seek to develop, manufacture and subsequently acquire nuclear weapons in violation of their non-proliferation commitments.

Every effort needs to be made to ensure the entry into force of the CTBT and to preserve its place in the international architecture. In this regard, the Secretary-General appeals to all remaining States whose ratifications are required for the CTBT to enter into force to commit to sign the Treaty at an early date if they have not already done so, and to accelerate the completion of their ratification processes.

It is the hope of the UN that one day all nuclear weapons will be eliminated. Until then, there is a need to observe International Day against Nuclear Tests as the world works towards promoting peace and security.

To learn more about the background and significance of this observance, please visit un.org/en/observances/end-nuclear-tests-day.

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Disarmament, Peace, and Security, please visit ngocdps.wordpress.com. For more information on the NGO Committee on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, please visit facebook.com/NGOCoRIP. For more information on the NGO Committee on Human Rights, please email the co-chairs at bobbinassar@gmail.com or bknotts@uua.org. 

World Water Week 2021: Building Resilience Faster

World Water Week is the annual focal point for the globe’s water issues. Organized by SIWI, this year’s event will be held entirely online, in a new, digital format designed to ensure that people across the world can collaborate to find solutions to the most pressing water-related challenges.

Under the theme “Building Resilience Faster,” World Water Week 2021 will address such issues as the climate crisis, water scarcity, food security, health, biodiversity, and impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic. While the event is usually held in Stockholm, hosting 4,000 people from more than 135 countries, the 2021 conference will be fully digital to ensure that this important forum can take place despite the ongoing pandemic.

The World Bank Group will convene and participate in over 50 sessions of World Water Week 2021 taking place from August 23-27. Please click on the “Sessions” tab for a list of World Bank Group (co)-convened sessions and sessions with World Bank Group participating speakers.

You can also follow our sessions along via @WorldBankWater using #wwweek.

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-NY, please visit ngocsd-ny.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-Vienna, please visit ngocsdvienna.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, please visit facebook.com/NGOCoRIP.

[deadline] Call to Civil Society Youth: Int’l Youth Day 2021 ‘Transforming Food Systems’

For International Youth Day on August 12, 2021, the United Nations Civil Society Unit is celebrating youth voices. The theme of this year Youth Day is, “Transforming Food Systems: Youth Innovation for Human and Planetary Health.” The day aims to highlight the notion that the success of such a global effort will not be achieved without the meaningful participation of young people.

Everyday, young people all over the globe work towards the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The Department of Global Communications is aiming to share these successes with our Civil Society network to celebrate youth and to encourage more youth to become involved by becoming the change they want to see in the world.

Please submit text and video responses for a chance to be featured in our International Youth Day Celebration: https://forms.office.com/Pages/ResponsePage.aspx?id=2zWeD09UYE-9zF6kFubccOvTA93e0tRCpxiXcqYBlUVUQThKS1U5NTkwMDRGQ0ozOUlKTlgwM1lITyQlQCN0PWcu

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Children’s Rights-NY, please visit childrightsny.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-NY, please visit ngocsd-ny.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-Vienna, please visit ngocsdvienna.org

Deadline Glasgow: Defund Climate Chaos

On November 1st, the most important international climate talks since Paris will begin in Glasgow, Scotland. National leaders from around the world will gather and make new climate commitments; many corporations will release their latest climate plans.

That’s why today Stop the Money Pipeline and our coalition partners are launching: Deadline Glasgow – defund climate chaos.

The Glasgow Climate Talks are a historic opportunity for the world to act on climate. When the Paris Agreement was signed five years ago, every nation on earth agreed to meet five years later and “ratchet up” their climate ambition. We’re now at that moment ― and it is vital that we hold the world’s leaders to their promises.

We’ll share the plan to campaign hard through Glasgow & we’ll have clear steps for activists to join us on the campaign.

Speakers include Tara Houska of Giniw Collective, Kayah George of Indigenous Climate Action, Representative Rashida Tlaib, and Bill McKibben.

Register here!

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Financing for Development, please visit ngosonffd.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, please visit facebook.com/NGOCoRIP. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-NY, please visit ngocsd-ny.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-Vienna, please visit ngocsdvienna.org.

South-South Sharing of Experiences in Macro-Financial Policies for Structural Transformation

UNITED NATIONS CONFERENCE ON TRADE AND DEVELOPMENT

Meeting the 2030 Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is inextricably linked with the process of structural transformation. Macroeconomic and financial policies are a key area in which many developing countries face limitations in their capacity to effectively design, manage, coordinate, implement, and evaluate the policy levers of structural transformation. South-South sharing of experiences, including by drawing lessons from success stories such as China’s development strategy, can help to address this shortcoming and assist national capacity-building.

China’s successful development experience over the past 40 years has been based on a pragmatic, gradual and experimental approach to development. Many other developing countries adopted policy strategies that emphasize reducing state influence over key macroeconomic policy levers such as exchange rates and interest rates, combined with broad-based liberalization and privatization at the sectoral level. This latter approach did not result in structural transformation. As such, China’s experience may act as a reference point from which other developing countries can assess alternative economic policy options that are consistent with their own objectives for structural transformation and adapted to their own specific circumstances.

This webinar looks at macroeconomic and financial policies from a comparative cross-country perspective. It aims at fostering a better understanding of the key macroeconomic and financial policy challenges that developing countries face and the extent to which China’s development strategy, trajectory and dynamics can inform other countries’ macroeconomic and financial policy strategies.

Register here: us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_ryV6dH_4SsKEuaGb7o44tw

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Financing for Development, please visit ngosonffd.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-Vienna, please visit ngocsdvienna.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-NY, please visit ngocsd-ny.org.

[VNR Lab] National experience of the Voluntary National Review (VNR) process: Japan

This lab will focus on the Voluntary National Review (VNR) preparation process in Japan, highlighting the methodology and principles of the country’s VNR report, preparation process and follow-up actions. The VNR lab could also reflect on the impact on COVID-19 on the VNR preparations and SDG implementation.

Concept Note, Program and Speakers: Link

Registration: https://forms.office.com/r/bKgy4pYS0S

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development, please visit ngocsdvienna.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-NY, please visit ngocsd-ny.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Human Rights, please email the co-chairs at bobbinassar@gmail.com or bknotts@uua.org.

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