Final proposal of Sustainable Development Goals and targets agreed
A final proposal of 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and 169 targets has been adopted by the UN General Assembly's Open Working Group (OWG) on Sustainable Development Goals during its 13th session. This was the final meeting of the OWG, which took place at UN Headquarters in New York from 14 to 19 July 2014.
The outcome of the OWG‚Äôs work has been compiled in a report that was adopted by acclamation and that will be submitted to the UN General Assembly for consideration and appropriate action at its 68th session, to be held in September 2014.
In this last proposal of SDGs and targets, forests finally appear under one goal (Goal 15: ‚ÄúProtect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, and halt and reverse land degradation and halt biodiversity loss‚ÄĚ) and under four targets, related to Goal 15 (targets 15.1, 15.2 and 15.b), and also to Goal 6 (target 6.6).
The explicit mention of forests in target 6.6 (‚Äú6.6. By 2020 protect and restore water-related ecosystems, including mountains, forests, wetlands, rivers, aquifers and lakes‚ÄĚ) may help to reflect the close relationship between forests and water.
However, the final wording of the proposed SDGs and targets does not reflect many of the other benefits provided by forests. These include, among others, their contribution to poverty eradication, food, medicines, and energy provision, watershed protection, biodiversity conservation, mitigation of and adaptation to climate change, and disaster risk reduction.
Still, changes in the final SDGs may be made, as was noted by some governments during the last meeting of the OWG. With this in mind, some countries expressed their reservations on different elements of the proposal, and commented that discussion about it would continue during the progress of the post-2015 development agenda.
The IISD Reporting Services coverage of the meeting can be found at this link: http://www.iisd.ca/sdgs/owg13/
The outcome document of the Open Working Group on Sustainable Development Goals can be downloaded here: