In 2015, more than 190 world leaders committed to 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to help us all end extreme poverty, fight inequality & injustice, and fix climate change. Together, the Goals represent the world’s first comprehensive blueprint for a better, more prosperous, sustainable future for all.
The UK Stakeholders for Sustainable Development (UKSSD) network is an open platform that supports public, private and voluntary organisations working towards sustainable development in the UK. We believe the SDGs present the perfect framework for our Government to start addressing not just the economic challenges, but the major social and environmental problems our society faces. These national challenges include:
- 16.8% of people are in poverty
- 3 million people are undernourished
- 40,000 people die from air pollution every year
- 17.5% of young people in the North East are not in employment, education or training
- The UK is on track to miss its target of 15% of energy coming from renewable sources by 2020
(Source: Newcastle University)
Earlier this year we coordinated an open letter to the Prime Minister which was published in The Times on 16 January. Over 80 major businesses united to call on the Government to demonstrate its commitment to delivering the SDGs in the UK and overseas. The letter received a lot of attention both on social media and in the press, but we are yet to receive a response from the Prime Minister.
At an event held in London on 8 February in partnership with Bond, the International Development NGO network and WWF-UK, Rory Stewart MP (Minister of State at the Department for International Development) made it clear that the Government is not considering the opportunity the SDGs present to the UK domestically, but is focused entirely on overseas efforts.
On 1 March we are holding a major conference in London bringing together over 300 senior leaders of business, civil society and public sector organisations. We’ll be discussing how we can unlock the UK’s potential and achieve the transformative change that the SDGs envision.
We will continue to press the Government to take action on the SDGs in the UK. Thank you for your support.