A LOOK BACK: The path to Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development
Agenda 2030 combines two formerly separate global processes to create a holistic strategy: the poverty and development agenda of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and the Sustainability Agenda (“Rio Process”).
Millennium Development Goals (MDGs)
The MDGs have shown that development successes are possible. Improvements have been achieved in many areas since the MDGs were adopted. From 2000 to 2015, for example, poverty has been halved worldwide and there is better access to drinking water and education. Mortality rates for mothers and children have also been reduced by half.
The concept of sustainable development was first advanced at the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development in Rio de Janeiro (Rio Conference). After the gathering, virtually all international resolutions, treaties and action programs relating to development acknowledged that economic growth which does not consider the three sustainability dimensions – social, environmental and economic – results in incalculable ecological threats and political risks.
In September 2013, both processes – the MDGs and Rio – were combined to form a joint basis for Agenda 2030. This allowed social, environmental and economic goals and their related aspects to be anchored in the agenda in a balanced manner.