As the leading global environmental authority, UN Environment and its governing body – the UN Environment Assembly (UNEA) – has an important contribution to make to the environmental dimension of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Recognizing in particular that “the main outcomes of the UNEA provide the key environmental perspective of sustainable development during the meetings of the High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF), Member States adopted a resolution at the third session of the UN Environment Assembly (UNEA) – held in Nairobi from 4 to 6 December 2017 – entitled Contributions of the UNEA to the HLPF (UNEP/EA.3/Res.3). Through the resolution, the UNEA “reiterate[d] its commitment to conveying the main messages agreed upon by the Environment Assembly to the HLPF to assess progress and challenges in the implementation of the 2030 Agenda and its interlinkages with the social and economic dimensions.”
This resolution builds on the UNEA resolution on Delivering on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (UNEP/EA.2/Res.5) adopted at its second session, held in Nairobi from 23 to 27 May 2016. While requesting UN Environment to enhance its activities in support of the coherent implementation of the environmental dimension of the 2030 Agenda, including through strengthened multi-stakeholder partnerships and science-policy interface, the resolution commits UNEA to “conveying the main messages of its sessions to the HLPF to support its function in the follow-up to and review of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.”
UN Environment has been working closely with Member States to convey the main messages from the UNEA under the guidance of the UNEA President. The main messages are structured in accordance with the template provided annually by the President of the Economic and Social Council, starting in 2016. The inputs submitted by the UNEA and other intergovernmental bodies result in a “Synthesis of voluntary submissions by functional commissions of the Economic and Social Council and other intergovernmental bodies and forums,” which constitutes part of official documentation for the HLPF each year. For the first time in 2018, H.E. Mr. Siim Kiisler, Minister for the Environment of Estonia, was included in the HLPF programme independently as a speaker in his capacity as the UNEA President.
Relevant documents pertaining to UNEA contributions to the HLPF can be found below:
2019: Empowering people and ensuring inclusiveness and equality
- UNEA contributions
- UNEA President statement at the HLPF
- Synthesis of voluntary submissions
2018: Transformation towards sustainable and resilient societies
In addition to the main messages from the UNEA, UN Environment provided Issue Briefs on the SDGs under in-depth review to better support the consideration of their environmental dimension at the 2018 HLPF.
- SDG 6. Clean water and sanitation
- SDG 7. Affordable and clean energy
- SDG 11. Sustainable cities and communities
- SDG 12. Responsible consumption and production
- SDG 15. Life on land
UN Environment also collaborated with the Forum for Law, Environment, Development and Governance (FLEDGE) to produce a Policy Brief on “Voluntary National Reviews: The Environmental Dimension”.
Immediately following the conclusion of the HLPF, UN Environment co-organized, with the UN Office for Sustainable Development, an Expert Group Meeting on Promoting Integrated Approaches to Sustainable Development. More information about the meeting and relevant documents can be accessed here.
2017: Eradicating poverty and prosperity in a changing world
2016: Ensuring that no one is left behind
- Report of the Executive Director: Progress in the implementation of resolution 3/3 on contributions of the United Nations Environment Assembly to the high-level political forum on sustainable development (March 2019)
- Secretariat note on “Contribution of the UNEA to the HLPF” submitted for consideration at the 4th annual subcommittee meeting of the Committee of Permanent Representatives (March 2017)
For more information, please contact Hyun.Sung[at]un.org.