Late on Monday, New York time, the co-chairs of the Open Working Group the Post-2015 Sustainable Development Goals, Ambassador Macharia Kamau of Kenya and Ambassador David Donoghue of Ireland have released the zero draft of the new development agenda to permanent representatives of UN member states. Entitled “Transforming Our World by 2030 – a New Agenda for Global Action” the zero draft raft covers four components: (1) an opening Declaration, (2) the Sustainable Development Goals and Targets, (3) Means of Implementation and Global Partnership and (4) Follow-up and Review. It also includes three annexes for further discussion when the next intergovernmental negotiations take place on 22–25 June 2015.
For those following the SDG developments, the draft contains few surprises, but some welcome aspects include the emphasis given the concept of “leaving no one behind” and the call for data disaggregation in identifying development priorities and monitoring progress.
The current draft retains the 17 goals previously identified through deliberations of the Open Working Group, including a hard-won “urban” Goal 11: “Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable.”
Among the proposed priorities are no fewer than six goals and targets that concern equity in land and natural resource access and use (1.4, 2.3, 5.a, 11.1, 15.2 and 16.4).
The draft document encourages all member states to develop ambitious national responses to the SDGs and targets as soon as possible, with an illustrative framework, noting the need for “adequate differentiation” (local adaptation) at the national level, taking into account the countries’ diverse starting points.
Some countries—namely the G77—may be concerned that the current draft remains subject to the outcomes of the Financing for Development Summit, to be held in Addis Ababa in July 2015. Others will find that the final section needs strengthening, in order to ensure that measures include needed reforms and changes to remove development obstacles. Likewise, some will be disappointed that the SDG progress reports will be based only on data from national systems, rather than other sources.
Download and review the zero draft.