The present state of planetary health, and humanitarian crises call for a revisit on questions related to global action and equity. The Twenty First Edition of TERI’s annual flagship event, the World Sustainable Development Summit 2022 will be held under the umbrella theme of ‘Towards a Resilient Planet: Ensuring a Sustainable and Equitable Future’ from 16th till 18th February next year.
The ongoing global COVID-19 pandemic has brought to the forefront on how human health and the health of our planet are inextricably linked, requiring wise stewardship of natural resources across all levels. A just and equitable implementation of climate and environmental policies need to go hand in hand with broader sustainable development and human well-being objectives. It is clear that responses to COVID-19 should be from the perspective of planetary resilience, and responses to the pandemic must not only be the right one for humans but also the right one for the Planet.
The year 2021 started on an optimistic note with the United States announcing measures raising US ambition on climate action. Thirty-two countries have net zero targets set or proposed in law and existing policies, while other countries are discussing their own net zero targets. The renewed momentum on ‘net-zero emissions’ is seen not only at the national policy levels but also at the sub-national levels and in companies.
Ensuring a sustainable and equitable future requires more than climate change mitigation efforts. The COVID-19 pandemic not only reminds the world of declining planetary health but of the deep inequalities prevailing across the world. Equitable redistributing of revenues is needed along with spending from governments for poverty-reducing policies such as education spending, infrastructure development such as access to electricity, clean water, sanitation, transport and telecommunication for realizing the SDGs.
WSDS 2022 kicked off with a curtain raiser event on 4th June 2021 on the eve of World Environment Day with Hon’ble Minister for Environment, Forest and Climate Change Shri Prakash Javadekar as the Chief Guest.
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