The UK Government has published a report on its progress towards implementing the Sustainable Development Goals
Civil society is leading the drive to get the United Kingdom to embrace creating a fairer and healthier planet.
The UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) aim to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all as part of a new sustainable development agenda.
A progress report on work that has taken place within Great Britain and Northern Ireland to adapt the principles was released today (Wednesday 26 June).
The report sets out how government, business, civil society and the public are working to make the goals a reality – at home and abroad – and outlines challenges that remain to reach the ambitious targets by 2030.
The report praises the role of civil society in contributing to the SDGs: highlighting its role in direct implementation, raising awareness at home and abroad, holding the government to account, and working collaboratively with other sectors to achieve the goals.
The report states: “From delivering life-saving assistance when disaster strikes, to addressing the underlying causes of deprivation, they (civil society organisations) have led the way in innovating and in challenging existing ways of working in development in order to strengthen efforts to end extreme poverty, reach the most marginalised, and deliver on the 2030 Agenda.”
The report recognises that awareness of the SDGs across sectors is varied, and although momentum around the project is building further work is needed.
It analyses progress made on each goal, and highlights the challenges that exist in creating change.
The report was unveiled by Rory Stewart MP, secretary of state for international development, who said that converting ambition into reality lies at the heart of delivering the goals.
He said: “Our challenge, and our opportunity, is to make the most of the creativity and energy the Sustainable Development Goals inspire. Whether they succeed or fail will depend on our ability to convert their ambition into reality – actually making the world a better place.
“The goals, neatly encapsulated by five Ps – People, Planet, Prosperity, Peace and Partnership – cover the most pressing issues of our time. They express our moral obligation to end hunger and extreme poverty, to ensure that every girl receives an education, and to save our planet and the species that dwell here. The goals have given us a way of talking about all this and a framework for making it reality.”
A similar report analysing the Scottish Government’s progress will be published early next month.