General Assembly reviews global progress towards sustainable urbanization – Global issues

The New Urban Program presents a shared global vision of how to build, manage and live in cities, through well-planned and managed urbanization.

It was adopted just a year after the states agreed Sustainable development goals (SDGs), blueprints for a better future, for people and planet, by 2030.

‘Change this trend’

In his opening speechGeneral Assembly President Abdulla Shahid spoke on how sustainable urbanization can drive change in many interconnected issues, including poverty eradication, climate action, migration, land degradation, prosperity economic prosperity and create peaceful societies.

However, he said the New Urban Agenda is often “underappreciated”, despite its far-reaching implications.

“While sustainable urbanization involves achieving all of the Sustainable Development Goals, only a few countries can truly claim that they have the necessary governance and policies in place, including including on the comprehensive urban planning, capacity development, access to technology and finance needed to ensure sustainable urbanization,” Mr. Shahid said, adding “We need to change this trend.”

The high-level meeting brought together representatives of the Government, city mayors, business leaders, youth and other constituencies.

The lead was marked by a number of events including the publication The latest report of the Secretary-General of the United Nations on the implementation offive regional forums on sustainable development and a special meeting of the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC).

Tackling ‘urban inequality’

Collen V. Kelapile, President of ECOSOC, who reported on the meeting held last week, said that the full implementation of the New Urban Agenda is at the core of the SDG principle of “leaving no one behind.” .

Among the key messages to emerge from the discussions was the need for financing to address “urban inequality,” including access to housing.

“House has become a commercial commodity, and the urban land market is captured by political elites. Member States are therefore encouraged to place housing above all as a human right,” Mr. Kelapile said.

He also encouraged countries to view the challenge of unlocking affordable housing finance as both a job creation opportunity and a catalyst to boost city revenues.

Leaving no one behind

Maimunah Sharif, CEO of UN-Habitatthe agency is the “custodian” of the New Urban Agenda.

She recalled that the report recommends integrated countries provide adequate and affordable housing as an engine of equitable development, adding that housing is at the heart of the patronage system. society, along with health care, employment, education and digital access.

“Member States can achieve this by making urban policy a central feature to comprehensively address climate mitigation and adaptation. By spatial adjustment and economic development, we can protect biodiversity and reduce pollution. We have to make sure no one, not even the smallest works of God, is left behind,” she speaks.

Urban expansion is contributing to significant mangrove loss in Indonesia.

Ocean Image Bank / Srikanth Mannep

Urban expansion is contributing to significant mangrove loss in Indonesia.

Withstand AP force

The New Urban Agenda is important at a time when cities are grappling with many pressures, for example, over food, water and energy availability – says the United Nations Under-Secretary-General, Amina Mohammed.

The framework lays out a clear road map for the development of truly sustainable cities, with a focus on resilient economies, healthy environments and the health, well-being, culture and security that exist. people need. It also offers long-term solutions to the climate crisis.

“When well planned, built as a compact city, and supported with high-quality public transport, cities provide the most sustainable form of human settlement.” she speak.

“Investing in sustainable urbanization can also drive important transitions between food and energy systems.”

Ms. Mohammed also highlighted UN initiatives to assist countries in implementing the New Urban Agenda.

For example, urbanization will be more systematically integrated into development cooperation frameworks, and governments will receive appropriate support to develop national urban policies and comprehensive urban planning.

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