Post-2015 Development Agenda: UN Secretary-General's draft Synthesis Report released

Cousin Island Special Reserve photo credit Alec Taylor

Nirmal Shah: 

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has presented an advance and unedited draft of his synthesis report on the post-2015 development agenda to UN Member States entitled "The Road to Dignity by 2030: Ending Poverty, Transforming All Lives and Protecting the Planet".

The synthesis report reflects comments, views and ideas from UN Member States, the whole UN system, various experts, civil society, business and people from around the world. It uses the Rio+20 Conference outcomes as the cornerstone for the post-2015 process. It seeks a future free from poverty, built on human rights, equality and sustainability. The report urges that now is not the time to succumb to political expediency, or to tolerate the lowest common denominators. The report says that the new threats that face us, and the new opportunities that present themselves, demand a high level of ambition and a truly participatory, responsive and transformational course of action.

The report lays out four components for a realistic yet ambitious outcome from the UN Special Summit on Sustainable Development in September to be held in 2015 and that that will adopt the post-2015 development agenda:

1. An inspirational vision made plain in a declaration;
2. A practical plan for that declaration, laid out in an integrated set of goals, targets and indicators;
3. Adequate means to implement the plan and a renewed global partnership for development;
4. A framework to monitor and review implementation to ensure promises made become promises delivered.

The report identifies six elements to frame and reinforce sustainable development:
1. Dignity - to end poverty and fight inequalities; [para 67]
2. People - to ensure healthy lives, knowledge, and the inclusion of women and children; [para 69]
3. Prosperity - to grow a strong, inclusive, and transformative economy; [para 72]
4. Planet - to protect our ecosystems for all societies and our children; [para 75]
5. Justice - to promote safe and peaceful societies, and strong institutions; [para 77]
6. Partnership - to catalyse global solidarity for sustainable development. [para 80]

 Ban Ki Moon presented his action agenda for the next five years at this week's General Assembly Photo credit Pauline Rose (efareport)

The reports states there is need to ensure strong participation of civil society, including:

para 78: An enabling environment under the rule of law must be secured for the free, active and meaningful engagement of civil society, and advocates reflecting the voices of women, minorities, LGBT groups, Indigenous Peoples, youth, adolescents and older persons.

para 123: We must establish effective modalities for multi-stakeholder cooperation and sharing the costs for Research, Development, Demonstration and Diffusion for new technologies across all stakeholders: public, private, civil society, philanthropic, and other sectors, inclusive of indigenous knowledge.

para 129: Executive institutions, parliaments and the judiciary will need the capacity to perform their functions in this endeavour. Also, institutions of civil society must have the capacity to perform their critical, independent role.

para 145: If we are to succeed the new agenda must become part of the contract between people, including civil society and responsible business, and their governments, national and local. [...] Empowered civil society actors, through action and advocacy, must rally to the cause, and contribute to a sustainable, equitable, and prosperous future.

para 149: National accountability: It would be built on existing national and local mechanisms and processes, with broad multistakeholder participation, including national and local governments, parliaments, civil society, science, academia and business.

The advanced unedited version of the report is available at:
http://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/

The Secretary-General's statement about the report is available at:
http://www.un.org/sg/statements/

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