HLPF 2016: 20/07 – Session 20 – Prospects for the future (projections, scenarios and new and emerging issues)

UN MGCY Statement
High-Level Political Forum
20 July 2016

Session 20: Prospects for the future (projections, scenarios and new and emerging issues)

Link to Statement:
UN MGCY Statement in Session 20

Thank you for the floor and opportunity to share views on behalf of the UN Major Group for Children & Youth.

Environmentally, we have already transgressed planetary boundaries and are on track to cross almost all of them by 2030. Planetary boundaries and environmental thresholds are for some reason politically sensitive, however, they are not new ideas or concepts – they are scientifically credible and crucial for achieving all dimensions of sustainable development.

We would like to build upon the example of the SG’s scientific advisory board’s TOR by recommending that the HLPF hold a thematic review of the environmental dimension of agenda 2030. In this review, environmental thresholds, planetary boundaries and biological support systems will be assessed, as well as each country’s ecological footprint.

Another emerging issue is increasing economic inequality, within and between countries. Significant intervention must take place if these unfortunate trends are to reverse. One important action is the disaggregation of data for each SDG by its distributional efficiency, to gain knowledge of statistical skews in progress across geographical and demographical populations.

Finally, within the social dimension, we note with concern that many countries are backsliding on human right commitments. In addition, protracted crises have become the new normal. We have a shared responsibility to prevent crises, resolve conflicts and respond to resulting displacement.

We would, however, like to express our support for the development of the Technology Facilitation Mechanism and associated STI forum. We believe that it broadens opportunities for scientists and researchers to provide technical knowledge and contribute to policy discussions.

But, it is also important to note that the normalization of internet and technology will remove those who lack such technological access from the conversation.

In regards to the programming of the HLPF, time extensions for the national review are needed to ensure that a relevant dialogue on the progress and challenges for each member state will take place. We also believe that more time must be allocated to address policy coherence with the many other international agreements and frameworks feeding into the HLPF.

We’d like to wish all the member states and all stakeholders luck with their work on making sustainable development frameworks a reality. We look forward to next year’s HLPF, hoping that it will take into account lessons learned from this year.

Thank you.

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