19 Jun, 2023

EU must act to achieve Sustainable Development Goals

During last week’s plenary session, the European Parliament adopted the second annual report on the EU’s implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), a Renew Europe initiative. The Group is very concerned to see that for many objectives, the EU is performing poorly, and even regressing in some cases. This is the result of the crises Europe has faced during recent years, such as the COVID-19 pandemic and Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine – however there may also be a lack of political will.  

Through this report, Renew Europe is again calling on the European Commission to adopt a clear strategy with binding targets on the SDGs for 2030, tackling issues such as leadership, targets, monitoring and financing. Agenda 2030 is the only framework that a response to challenges faced in the EU and globally: climate change, pandemics, conflict, mass displacement, extreme poverty.

Barry Andrews MEP (Fianna Fáil, IE) Renew Europe shadow rapporteur on the file in the European Parliament Committee on Development (DEVE) and chair of the SDG Alliance, says:

"We need to move beyond the era of SDG-washing in the EU - we now need SDGs with teeth, which can hold actors to account and transform societies. The first step is for the EU to adopt a single, overarching strategy to implement the goals, with clear, time-bound targets for each goal. Without an EU strategy, we are poised to fail. Globally, the time has now come to push for binding targets. We are hopeful that such discussions will be on the agenda of the upcoming SDG Summit, which will be a moment of reckoning for Agenda 2030. The EU has to be the agenda-setter of this summit, which is why this European Parliament report is so important."

Max Orville MEP (Mouvement Démocrate, FR) Renew Europe shadow rapporteur on the report in the European Parliament Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety (ENVI), adds:

"We have seven years left to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Our message is clear: implementation is on track but needs to be accelerated. If they are to succeed, the SDGs must become everyone's business - the public and private sectors, civil society, citizens and promoters of innovative solutions. They must also be the compass for all European public policies. Together, let's ensure the prosperity of our planet and the well-being of our populations."

Photo credit: © European Union 2023 - Source : EP

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