15th July 19
Minister of State for Natural Resources, Community Affairs and Digital Development Seán Canney TD will represent Ireland at the United Nations High Level Political Forum (HLPF) this week to discuss global progress on achieving the UN's Sustainable Development Goals.
Heads of State and Ministers from 193 countries are attending the UN HLPF on Sustainable Development in New York, where they will take stock of global progress to achieve the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals.
While in New York, Minister Canney will deliver Ireland's national statement to the Forum and hold bilateral meetings with other ministers from around the world. He will also participate in a number of high profile side events, on topics including the role of young people in Climate Action, the EU's support for the Goals, and the need for countries to build partnerships to achieve sustainable development.
This year the Forum will address progress and challenges in relation to the following goals:
SDG 4 – Quality Education
SDG 8 – Decent Work and Economic Growth
SDG 10 – Reduced Inequalities
SDG 13 – Climate Action
SDG 16 – Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions
The Goals, which were adopted in 2015, are the most ambitious set of global commitments ever agreed by United Nations member states, and provide a framework for achieving a peaceful, just, prosperous and sustainable planet by 2030.
Ireland was centrally involved in the development of the Goals, as our then ambassador to the UN, Mr David Donoghue, co-chaired the negotiations which led to their adoption.
Ireland remains committed to achieving all 17 Goals in full by 2030 and considers the High Level Political Forum as a vital mechanism for countries to report on their progress and to learn the experience of others.
"The Sustainable Development Goals are a roadmap to the future we want by 2030. Ireland is proud to have provided leadership on the agreement of the Goals and now we are focused on showing the same leadership in achieving them. Global progress can only happen when countries work together and build on each others' best practice. I am looking forward to sharing Ireland's experience this week, and to hearing from other countries on their progress and challenges ," stated Minister Canney.
Note for Editors
1. What are the SDGs?
The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are a set of 17 "Global Goals" adopted by UN Member States in September 2015. Progress on the implementation of these Goals will be measured by 169 targets through regular reporting at State level to the UN High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF) in New York.
The SDGs address the economic, social and environmental aspects of sustainable development and cover a broad range of issues like poverty, hunger, health, education, climate change, gender equality and social justice.
The SDGs are officially known as "Transforming our world: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development". The Goals were developed to follow the Millennium Development Goals which ended in 2015.
The Minister of Communications, Climate Action and Environment has lead responsibility for promoting and overseeing the coherent implementation of the SDGs on a whole-of-Government basis. Ireland launched its SDG National Implementation Plan 2018 – 2020 in April 2018.
2. What is the HLPF?
The United Nations High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF) is the UN's main platform for discussing and promoting issues relating to sustainable development. It is the main forum for UN Member States to follow-up and review progress made towards achieving the 17 SDGs and the commitments of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
What does it do?
The HLPF serves to provide political leadership and guidance on issues of sustainable development; review progress on implementing the SDGs; improve cooperation and allowing for engagement with stakeholders; and share best practice on implementation. The Forum meets annually in New York with Ministers from across the world taking part to discuss progress.
Why Does it Matter?
The SDGs are a crucial tool in ensuring a more inclusive and equal world, enhancing the integration of the three dimensions of sustainable development – economic, social and environmental. As part of the agreement to reach the Goals by 2030, States agreed that all signatories should "conduct regular and inclusive reviews of progress at the national and sub-national levels". The purpose of these Voluntary National Reviews (VNRs) is to allow each State to share their approach in implementing the SDGs, discuss their successes and challenges, and learn from other countries.
Ireland was one of the two co-facilitators of the final agreement on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in 2015. Ireland presented its first VNR in 2018.