UN: Urgent action needed to combat social inequalities and environmental risks


Ban Ki-Moon calls for international effort at the first Global Human Development Forum in Istanbul.

Social justice and environmental protection are equally urgent and intrinsically linked universal goals, with coordinated global action needed on both fronts at the UN’s ‘Rio+20’ Conference on Sustainable Development in June, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said in a message to an audience of development experts, civil society leaders and government officials at the first Global Human Development Forum here today.

“The world stands at a crossroads,” the Secretary-General said in his message to the Istanbul Forum, convened by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Government of Turkey.

“We need everyone – government ministers and policymakers, business and civil society leaders, and young people – to work together to transform our economies, to place our societies on a more just and equitable footing, and to protect the resources and ecosystems on which our shared future depends.”

UNDP’s 2011 Human Development Report —“Sustainability and Equity: A Better Future for All,” which argued that social inequalities and environmental hazards must be combated together for the sake of future generations— provided the framework for the two-day Istanbul dialogue. The Global Human Development Forum was organized to examine the critical social, economic and environmental challenges facing the world today, including better approaches to assessing national and global progress.

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