Greenhouse gases are produced as a by-product of the use of fossil fuels to supply light and heat, produce food, manufacture products and transport people and goods. These gases congregate in the upper atmosphere and result in global warming through absorption of sunlight reflected from the earth’s surface. At the 21st
meeting of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change in Paris, it was agreed to limit the average increase in global temperature to 2°C .
A good education for every child is an urgent global imperative, but what if entering schools puts children at serious health risks? Tuberculosis (TB), the single biggest infectious disease killer, poses a major risk for young people in countries with high prevalence of TB, and schools are among the places where they are most likely to catch it.
As old and new challenges continue to threaten its access, the UN has dedicated the next decade in order to protect a crucial but fragile natural resource: water.
With March marking Women’s History Month, the debate over gender-based discrimination couldn’t have reached its new peak at a more critical time.
On World Water Day, March 22, universal access to clean water continues to be a privilege, when it should be a right. Experts predict that by 2030 the global water demand will exceed supply by 40%.
For the past weeks, many have been anxiously tracking the approach of Cape Town’s Day Zero: the day its taps will run dry. To everyone’s relief, current predictions are that careful conservation may stave off such a catastrophe in the coastal South African city until the rains arrive.
Going into World Water Day, I have an ambivalent feeling. This year’s theme The Answer is in Nature
can sound almost like mockery considering how badly parts of the world have been hit in recent years due to water-related natural disasters, be it floods, storms or droughts.
Freshwater makes up only 2.5% of all water we have on earth. Readily accessible freshwater – which is found in rivers, lakes, wetlands and aquifers – accounts for less than one per cent of the world’s water supply. It is vital for the existence of nearly every species on earth.
At the start of the seventy-second session of the General Assembly of the United Nations I emphasized our common goal: peace and a decent life for all people on a sustainable planet. Many leaders echoed this overarching priority at the general debate and beyond.
“You cannot manage what you do not measure” is a long-familiar saying to many, nowhere more so than in professional water circles at almost every level.
One of the first resolutions adopted by the United Nations General Assembly, on the location of the headquarters of the Organization, gives the United Nations “exclusive rights over the subsoil of land conveyed to it, and in particular the right to make constructions underground and to obtain therefrom supplies of water.”
When disaster strikes, or conflict rages, families soon discover their most urgent need - water. In such precarious situations, access is usually limited or non-existent, and children and their families are forced to put themselves in further danger in the quest for water.
The UN General Assembly will launch
the International Decade for Action: Water for sustainable development (2018-2028) on World Water Day, 22 March 2018
. According to UNGA President Miroslav Lajcak, outlining his priorities for 2018, the event will “contribute to the review of SDG 6” during the 2018 session of the UN High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF).
Chinese officials have been adept at ascribing a vision for the “Belt and Road” initiative (BRI) that garners support from a wide array of countries, as well as international institutions like the World Bank and International Monetary Fund (IMF).
March 8th, 2018, International Women’s Day, saw an extraordinary global mobilization for gender equality. In the last year, global movements for gender equality-- from marches to powerful grassroots organizing and viral social media campaigns, such as #MeToo and #TimesUp in the United States and other countries-- have galvanized the world’s attention like never before.
In most military conflicts worldwide, the ultimate winners are not one of the warring parties-- but the world’s prolific arms traders, described by peace activists as “merchants of death”.
The UN High Commissioner for Refugees has a tall task: deliver a “Global Compact for Refugees” to the United Nations’ General Assembly by the end of 2018.
Ahead of the pending ‘list of shame,’ the Secretary-General’s Annual Report on Children and Armed Conflicts, child protection actors share concerns about the politicization of humanitarian aid putting child protection capacities at a disadvantage.
The international community agreed on the global Goal of achieving gender equality and women’s empowerment
by 2030. But we can’t reach it – not even by 2050 – until we talk to each other, rather than past each other. If we are serious about empowering women and girls, we have to bridge the huge chasm that exists between the advocates of gender equality, on the one hand, and advocates of other Goals, on the other.
This month, five landmark expert assessment reports by the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) will be considered by Governments for final approval in Medellín, Colombia.
US President Donald Trump’s recent announcement of steep tariffs on steel and aluminium imports seems to have shocked US allies, even though these were among his 2016 election promises. The European Union (EU), Australia and Canada reacted sharply, in contrast to the more restrained response from China, the main target of earlier actions.