The overwhelming coverage of the COVID-19 pandemic and its resulting socio-economic tremors have made it deceptively easy for global citizens to lose track of an equally insidious crisis: the impending climate emergency and, with it, the looming deadline for the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Yet, despite the distractions, the global temperature continues to rise, our planet’s oceans continue to warm, and the urgent fight to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals remains a pressing international obligation many have still to meet.
The current year 2020 marks the beginning of the Decade of Action — the final stretch in the United Nations’ effort to deliver the Sustainable Development Goals and a deliberate international push to achieve far-reaching progress in a vast range of sectors spanning from green energy and gender equality to sustainable cities and disease eradication.
But some questions still linger: how can public institutions, civil society and the private sector come together to accelerate on these goals? Is 2030 an achievable objective? And how do we ensure that climate action is carried out equitably and with the full participation of disenfranchised communities?
These questions – and more – will occupy the gravitational center of The Decade of Action: Ensuring an Equitable Climate Engagement – the opening panel event for the Earth Institute's Center for Sustainable Development and Denmark In New York’s Climate Storytelling Partnership.
Introduction: Radhika Iyengar, Research Scholar, Center for Sustainable Development
Moderator: Brian Kahn, Managing Editor, Earther
- Selwin Charles Hart, Assistant Secretary-General for the Climate Action Team, United Nations; Executive Director for the Caribbean region at the Inter-American Development Bank
- Tomas Anker Christensen, Climate Ambassador of Denmark
- Damilola Ogunbiyi, CEO, Sustainable Energy for All & Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General of Sustainable Energy for All
- Alexandria Villaseñor, Founder, Earth Uprising
- Jeffrey Sachs, Director, Center for Sustainable Development; Columbia University Professor; President, UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network
- Thomas Schulz, CEO, FLSmidth