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The interlinked challenges of climate change and sustainable development must be urgently addressed to deliver a stable and secure world to future generations. Governments recognize this, but greater efforts – including scaling up and speeding up climate action – are needed to accelerate progress on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), according to the latest report on the SDGs presented on 17 July by UN Secretary-General António Guterres.

“We need to recognize that climate change became the main accelerator of all other factors,” said Mr Guterres, emphasizing the need to address climate change in order to successfully achieve the SDGs.

Despite Advances, Accelerated Efforts Needed

Using the most recent data available, the annual Sustainable Development Goals Report provides an overview of the world’s implementation efforts to date, highlighting areas of progress and areas where more action needs to be taken to ensure no one is left behind.

This year’s report finds that while progress has been made over the past decade across all areas of development, the pace of progress has been insufficient and advancements have been uneven to fully meet the implementation of the SDGs.

“Implementation has begun, but the clock is ticking,” stated Mr Guterres. “This report shows that the rate of progress in many areas is far slower than needed to meet the targets by 2030.”

Stepping Up Climate Action to Make Progress on the SDGs

The report takes stock of the progress made on the 17 Global Goals outlined in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, and notably on SDG 13 on climate action, inviting all stakeholders to take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts.

With the entry into force of the Paris Agreement, which aims to limit the global temperature rise to well below 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels, countries’ commitment to taking climate action is gaining momentum.

A growing number of countries are preparing and implementing national plans to address the causes of climate change and enhance resilience, and over the last decade, countries have made progress in managing the worst impacts of disasters.

But the report also highlights the need to step up efforts to fully address climate change and its impacts to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.

“As climate change is the main accelerator of all other factors, there must be a very strong reaffirmation of our commitment to the Paris Agreement, and to its implementation with an enhanced ambition,” António Guterres added.

 About the Report

The Sustainable Development Goals Report 2017 is the annual assessment of global and regional progress towards the Goals. The report is based on latest available data on selected indicators of the global SDG indicator framework, prepared by the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs with inputs from a large number of international and regional organizations.

Read the full press release on the UN News Centre website.

The full Sustainable Development Goals Report 2017 is available here.

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