SDG Update – 25 October 2018


G-STIC 2018: Connecting Technological Innovation to Decision Making for Sustainability
Veerle Vandeweerd, G-STIC Policy Director
G-STIC is entirely focused on market-ready integrated technological solutions to achieve the SDGs. Integrated technological solutions not just deal with one sustainable development challenge at a time, but aim to achieve substantial social and economic benefits by tackling multiple challenges at the same time.
Getting Carbon Prices Right: Whether Incentives or Tax, Climate Costs Must be Part of Production and Consumption Costs
Beate Antonich, Ph.D., Thematic Expert for Climate Change and Sustainable Energy (Germany)
During September 2018, opportunities and challenges with carbon pricing mechanisms were addressed in several reports. An OECD report emphasizes a vast majority of industrial, residential and commercial sector emissions are entirely unpriced and highlights deep carbon pricing gaps in most countries studied. The report notes, however, that China’s emissions trading schemes, and carbon tax efforts in other countries, could significantly reduce these gaps. A UNFCCC report on achievements of the Kyoto Protocol’s Clean Development Mechanism, along with calls by participants at a September workshop in Bonn, suggests consideration of CDM lessons in the creation of the Paris Agreement’s sustainable development mechanism. A New Climate Institute report addresses environmental risks from forest offset credits in the Paris Agreement.
Our Last Whale and Other Adventures: Trying to Build a Sustainable World
Vita Kinsella, Student at Draschestrasse Vienna Bilingual School, Austria; and Ariana Kurzmann, Student at Draschestrasse Vienna Bilingual School, Austria
It all started with the plastic whale. The animal made of plastic bottles was the first step of our journey, the first impression. I would never have believed, had somebody told me, the extent to which we would succeed in reaching out to help the environment and the ocean.
DESA Issues Handbook to Guide Preparation of 2019 VNRs
October 2018: The UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA) has released a handbook to guide countries’ preparation of voluntary reviews of SDG implementation for the 2019 session of the UN High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF). The 2019 edition of the ‘Handbook for the Preparation of Voluntary National Reviews’ (VNRs) provides “basic, practical information” on steps that countries may take when preparing a review. Currently, 51 countries are planning to present a VNR in July 2019.
World Bank Group Launches Fund to Catalyze High-Impact SDG Initiatives
18 October 2018: The World Bank Group has launched the Partnership Fund for the SDGs (SDG Fund), a multi-donor fund to incentivize catalytic activities for SDG implementation, as well as to equip countries with tools and best practices to achieve the Goals. Sweden is the first partner to help launch the SDG Fund, with an initial contribution of US$7 million.
Infrastructure Forum Explores Technology’s Role in Sustainability, Accessibility, Resilience
13 October 2018: The heads of multilateral development banks (MDBs) and international institutions gathered for the 2018 Global Infrastructure Forum (GIF 2018) to consider the role of technology plays in shaping infrastructure that is sustainable, accessible and resilient. They also committed to enhancing support for capacity building for infrastructure public-private partnerships (PPPs).
EU Adopts Negotiating Position for 2018 Biodiversity Conference
9 October 2018: Environment ministers of the EU member States adopted conclusions setting out the EU negotiating position for the UN Biodiversity Conference. The Council of Environment Ministers calls for increased efforts to fully achieve the Aichi Biodiversity Targets, and for the adoption of an ambitious follow-up to the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020, to strengthen implementation of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and its Protocols, as well as of other biodiversity-related multilateral environmental agreements (MEAs) and relevant SDGs.
Experts Provide Guidance on Data Interoperability for SDGs
22 October 2018: During the second UN World Data Forum, experts launched a guide on data interoperability for development to help improve the integration and reusability of data and data systems. The guide highlights that the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development requires using the best data and information available from multiple sources to design, implement and monitor evidence-based policies, and interpreting and sharing data and information “in a way that is logical and makes sense.”
Arab Region Considers FfD, Data, Food Security and Nutrition
22 October 2018: The 24th meeting of the UN’s Regional Coordination Mechanism held a special session on Financing for Development (FfD), in order to develop recommendations to respond to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and ongoing changes as a result of reforms to the UN development system. The meeting also addressed key achievements in the region related to the Arab Forum for Sustainable Development (AFSD), SDG data, food security and nutrition, and water.
Africa Dialogue Series Addresses Peace, Security, Development, Human Rights
17 October 2018: The UN’s inaugural Africa Dialogue Series (ADS) focused on the nexus among peace, security, human rights, humanitarian assistance and development in Africa. Participants underscored synergies between the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the African Union’s (AU) Agenda 2063, and recognized the importance of collaborative efforts between the UN and the AU to strengthen multilateralism.
Report Shows Agroforestry’s Contribution to Several SDGs
1 October 2018: Agroforestry can contribute to food security, increase biodiversity, and combat climate change, according to a recent report by member organizations of the Agroforestry Network, and should attract more policy attention and investment to fulfill its potential.
Aarhus Centres Assess Work to Advance SDGs, Convention Principles
20 September 2018: The Aarhus Centres and Public Environmental Information Centres held a meeting to assess progress and advance efforts on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the SDGs. The Centres work to advance, in particular, SDGs 6 (clean water and sanitation), 11 (sustainable cities and communities), 12 (responsible consumption and production), 16 (peace, justice and strong institutions) and 17 (partnerships for the Goals).