Sustainable development: an UN initiative
After the end of world war ІІ there was pain & destruction everywhere, then the UNO came into existence, which worked for the world peace & development of world. After world war ІІ, it was only possible by the efforts of UN that colonization became globalization.
Now when we think of a globalized world, global peace with different nations speaking different languages & having different cultures; is it because of trade, politics, great military power or great economic power? No, it is just because of UN. The continuous effort of UN has brought this day where we can talk, think of a global world.
In last 70 years UN has faced many challenges successfully. Humankind has achieved impressive progress over the past seven decades. It has reduced violence and has established global institutions, a code of agreed universal principles and a rich tapestry of international law. It has witnessed stunning technological progress, millions upon millions lifted from poverty, millions more empowered, diseases defeated, life expectancies on the rise, colonialism dismantled, new nations born, apartheid conquered, democratic practices taken deeper root and vibrant economies built in all regions.
After hard & honest efforts of the UN, conditions in today’s world are a far cry from the vision of the Charter. Amid great plenty for some, we witness pervasive poverty, gross inequalities, joblessness, disease and deprivation for billions. Displacement is at its highest level since the Second World War. Armed conflict, crime, terrorism, persecution, corruption, impunity and the erosion of the rule of law are daily realities. The impacts of the global economic, food and energy crises are still being felt. The consequences of climate change have only just begun. These failings and shortcomings have done as much to define the modern era as has our progress in science, technology and the mobilization of global social movements.
There is a theory of evolution, for successfully working of anything, it need an evolution of processes so does UN. We need to plan one universal, transformative & sustainable development, underpinned by rights, and with people and the planet at the centre. World is changing every day, it is because of science & technology, so sustainable development needs a hand of science & technology ornamented with INNOVATION. Multi language can play a great role in the sustainable development of the world. I remember one of the most famous N. Mandela’s quotes, telling that “If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head and if you talk to him in his language, then that goes to his heart”. So Multilanguage tasking is important too, to understand culture of a nation & its people for a sustainable development of that particular region.
Sustainable development need, equitable, inclusive, and committed to work together to promote sustained and inclusive economic growth; social development, environmental protection and benefit for all ( in particular the children of the world, youth and future generations of the world without distinction of any kind such as age, sex, disability, culture, race, ethnicity, origin, migratory status, religion, economic or other status).
With the globalized & sophisticated technology, we can decide to end the age-old ills of extreme poverty & hunger. Our globalized world is marked by extraordinary progress alongside unacceptable —and unsustainable —levels of want, fear, discrimination, exploitation, injustice and environmental folly at all levels. We also know, however, that these problems are not accidents of nature or the results of phenomena beyond our control. They result from actions and omissions of people, public institutions, the private sector and others charged with protecting human rights and upholding human dignity. . Or we can continue to degrade our planet & all intolerable inequalities to sow bitterness & despair us to achieve sustainable development for all.
First we need to set goals for the sustainable development of world:
Sustainable Development Goals – End poverty in all its forms everywhere; End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture; Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages; Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all; Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls; Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all; Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all; Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all; Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and foster innovation; Reduce inequality within and among countries; Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable; Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns; Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts; Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development; Protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, and halt and reverse land degradation and halt biodiversity loss; Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels; Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the global partnership for sustainable development.
The challenge with a truly transformative agenda is both universal and adaptable to the conditions of each country, and that places people and the planet at the centre. Their voices have underscored the need for democracy, the rule of law, civic space and more effective governance, transparency in the functioning and capable institutions, for new and innovative partnerships, including with responsible business and effective local authorities, and for a data revolution, rigorous accountability mechanisms and renewed global partnerships with based agenda for sustainable development, addressing economic growth, social justice and environmental stewardship and highlighting the link between peace, development and human rights.
We are at a historic crossroads and the direction we take will determine whether we will succeed or fail in fulfilling our promises. To fulfil the promise of sustainable development we need some elements to help frame & reinforce the sustainable development- underpinned by the rights & with people & planet at the centre. These elements can be Dignity (to end poverty & fight inequality), People (to ensure healthy lives, knowledge and inclusion of women & children), Prosperity (to grow a strong inclusive & transformative economy), Planet (to protect our ecosystem for all societies & future generation), Justice (to promote safe & peaceful societies with strong institution and administration) & Partnership (to catalyse global solidarity for sustainable development).
Some problems like Water, Terrorism, Climate Change, Rising Population, Counter Disease, Finance and Resource Management and Transport need urgent attention to achieve a sustainable development.
Water is not only a resource, it is a life source. We all share the responsibility to ensure a healthy, secure and sustainable water supply for our communities, environment, and economy – our quality of life depends on it. With three objectives on universal access to water and sanitation, improved wastewater management and pollution control, and better integrated water resources management we can somewhat counter the problem of water.
Terrorism is a major threat to the peace of world. It needs a global support to counter & eradicate, from the world.
Human activities have led to a change in climate, ecosystem & nature’s cycle which has caused rise in the global temperature; rains without monsoon, heat waves & cold waves etc. which have affected world. Climate change & sustainable development are two sides of same coin. Every nation on the planet earth is responsible for this havoc & should take necessary steps for the conservations of nature.
The global population has risen up to 7 billion, which needs to feed & demand a rise in the consumption of resources, which can be a hurdle in the path of sustainable development. There is a need for home planning & support of education to counter this problem.
Diseases are threat for the sustainable of healthy human civilization. There is need to provide best & cost effective medicine, proper techniques for diagnosis of disease, better health care & good infrastructure.
To mend the road of development, there is a need of proper finance& resource management and transparency in the system.
There is a need to work with Governments, transport providers (aviation, marine, ferry, rail, road, and urban public transport), businesses, financial institutions, civil society and other stakeholders to promote sustainable transport systems and their integration into development strategies and policies, including in climate action. It will promote sustainable transport that is in line with inclusive and equitable growth, social development, protection of the global environment and ecosystems, and addressing climate change.
Other than these, there are other risk which can be called Global risks (uncertain events or condition that, if it occurs, can cause significant negative impact for several countries/industries within next 10 years) – Economic Risk, Environmental Risk, Geopolitical Risk, Societal Risk & Technological Risk which needs to be countered successfully.
Economic risk can be stated as failure of financial mechanism or institution, unmanageable inflation, fiscal crisis, energy price shock, asset bubble, deflation, unemployment or underemployment, failure of critical infrastructure. Environmental risk can be stated as failure of climate change adaption, man-made environmental catastrophes, biodiversity loss & ecosystem collapse, natural catastrophes, extreme weather events. Geopolitical risk can be stated as terrorist attacks, weapons of mass destruction, failure of national governance, state collapse or crisis, interstate conflict. Societal risk can be stated as spread of infectious diseases, food crisis, and failure of urban planning, water crisis, profound social instability, and large scale involuntary migration. Technological risk can be stated as critical information infrastructure breakdown, cyber-attacks, data fraud or theft, misuse of technologies.
For the dream of sustainable development, we need support from national public sources, national private sources, international public sources, international private sources, volunteerism and support of every human. And the core of sustainable development should be Scientific, Balanced approach (economic, social and environmental aspects), Novelty, Effective, Accessible & understandable.
To accomplish the dream of sustainable development, not a single person, not single child from any part of the world should be left behind. With our globalized economy and sophisticated technology, we need science based action oriented agenda integrating four different interdependent dimensions- economic, social, environmental & governance. It also need rigorous review & monitoring, better & more disaggregated data, goals & targets that are measurable & adaptable, and transformative action that would apply to all countries.
Sustainable development is the path to the future we want for all. It offers a framework to generate economic growth, achieve social justice, exercise environmental stewardship and strength governance.
– BAN KI-MOON