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Global Goals
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Global Goals lose ground

The recently released Sustainable Development Report (SDR) indicates progress on the Global Goals (SDGs) is going backwards for the first time.

The SDR incorporates the SDG Index, which tracks progress on the 2030 goals, and this year’s report reveals a ‘reversal in progress’ on the back of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Written by a group of authors led by Professor Jeffrey Sachs, President of the Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN), the report published by Cambridge University Press accounts for the short-term hit of the pandemic and sets out ‘how the SDGs can frame the recovery’.

“For the first time since the SDGs were adopted in 2015, the world lost ground on the SDGs in 2020. The Covid-19 pandemic has created not only a global health emergency but also a sustainable development crisis,” explained Jeffrey Sachs. “To restore SDG progress, developing countries need a significant increase in fiscal space, through global tax reform and expanded financing by the multilateral development banks. Fiscal outlays should support the six key SDG transformations: quality education for all, universal health coverage, clean energy and industry, sustainable agriculture and land use, sustainable urban infrastructure, and universal access to digital technologies.”

Finland tops the 2021 SDG Index, followed by two Nordic countries – Sweden and Denmark. While Venezuela, Tuvalu, and Brazil are the nations that have seen the biggest decline in their progress.

The detailed report reveals there is a big gap between rhetoric and action. Of the 48 countries surveyed only 20 had the SDGs included in their budgetary strategies.

For the full findings download the report for free.

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Susan Robertson
Written By

Susan is the co-founder of Innovators Magazine and a consultant for OnePoint5 Media. Susan is also a member of the UNFCCC-led Resilience Frontiers Nexus group and co-chair of the APOPO Foundation UK board.

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