The World Economic Forum’s virtual Sustainable Development Impact Summit will begin today. Hosted alongside the UN General Assembly, the three-day
The World Economic Forum’s virtual Sustainable Development Impact Summit will begin today.
Hosted alongside the UN General Assembly, the three-day summit brings together world leaders to focus on sustainable development that advances climate change and global equality efforts. This year’s summit will explore how sustainability can accelerate the global economic recovery from COVID-19. Acceleration is paramount: due to the pandemic, 2020 was the first time that progress towards achieving the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals backtracked.
This summit marks one of the last global sustainability events ahead of COP26, the UN climate change conference. Leaders from 196 countries will gather during COP26 to agree on actions to limit climate change in what is being billed as one of the last opportunities to tackle rising carbon emissions before the world is condemned to a hotter future plagued by extreme weather.
Expect this summit to forecast the issues that will dominate COP26, such as food systems threatened by changing climates. A likely contentious topic will be how to finance sustainable development. Developing states are often financially unable to redirect their economies towards sustainable practices, unlike wealthy nations. Expect these countries to call for financial assistance from Western organizers as they transition to sustainability.