Main Messages from Irelandís Voluntary National Review 2018
Ireland is proud to have played a significant role in the development and adoption of the 2030 Agenda on Sustainable Development, as co-facilitator, together with Kenya, of the intergovernmental negotiations. Ireland will continue to show leadership as the Sustainable Development Goals [SDGs] are implemented, both at home and across the world.
While Ireland adopted its first national sustainable development strategy more than two decades ago, the SDGs require a step change in the integration of national social, economic and environmental policy. To this end, Ireland has recently prepared a SDG National Implementation Plan 2018-2020. This Plan provides a framework for how Ireland will achieve the SDGs domestically by 2030, and support their global implementation. It reflects Irelandís Ďwhole-of-governmentí approach to the SDGs, which will see the mainstreaming of the SDGs across national policies and through its engagement abroad. The SDG National Implementation Plan is also based on the fundamental commitment of the 2030 Agenda to leave no-one behind and to reach the farthest behind first.
The SDGs underline the linkages between national sustainable development and Irelandís global engagement, particularly through the work of Irish Aid (Irelandís official overseas development assistance programme), The Government will publish a new White Paper on International Development in the second half of 2018, which will further strengthen the alignment of Irelandís aid programme with the SDGs. Expanding Irelandís global reach and impact is a priority for the Government and our engagement with the 2030 Agenda will take place within this context.
While several existing national policies take account of our SDG commitments, the linked processes of developing the SDG National Implementation Plan 2018-2020 and preparing Irelandís first Voluntary National Review [VNR] have provided an opportunity for enhancing cross-Government awareness of, and engagement with, the SDGs. This has been particularly salient in relation to assessing the level of alignment with existing national policies. As part of the National Implementation Plan, Ireland has mapped existing policies and programmes against each of the 169 SDG sub-targets and, while policy alignment will be an ongoing process, this mapping exercise indicates significant potential in national policies to achieve the Goals.
The National Implementation Plan and VNR processes have also provided a focus for stakeholder engagement, and Ireland will increase its efforts to promote national stakeholdersí meaningful engagement with, and participation in, SDG implementation. A national stakeholder forum will have its inaugural meeting in June 2018.
In order to provide a comprehensive assessment of national progress towards achieving SDGs, Ireland considered it important that its first VNR address all 17 of the Goals, in each case providing information on progress to date and outlining Irelandís policy response to the Goals and targets. In order to highlight the interlinkages between the national and global levels, Irelandís VNR also addresses how Ireland is supporting each of the SDGs globally, including through our official development assistance programme.
The timing of this first VNR, coming shortly after the adoption of the SDG National Implementation Plan, is particularly useful in providing a baseline against which Irelandís future SDG progress can be measured. The VNR is also timely in that many of the measures through which Ireland will achieve the SDGs will take place within the context of Project Ireland 2040, which was launched in February 2018 and is the Governmentís overarching policy initiative to make Ireland a better country for all our people, a country that reflects the best of who we are and what we aspire to be. Project Ireland 2040 is made up of the National Planning Framework to 2040 and the National Development Plan 2018-2027.
Ireland is committed to delivering its second VNR to the 2022 session of the High Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development.
Sustainable Development Unit
Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment
The Action Areas and Points within this Framework are a combination of existing policies on which the Government will build and new actions that will drive the restructuring of the economy. Source: UNCSD Secretariat (2010) Questionnaire for the Member States on Experiences, Success Factors, Risks and Challenges with Regard to Objective and Themes of UN Conference on Sustainable Development (UNCSD) The Framework for Sustainable Economic Renewal sets out the Government's vision for the next phase of Ireland's economic development, which is predicated on successfully addressing the severe economi...[more]
The best opportunity to slow the rate of near-term warming globally and in sensitive regions such as the Arctic is by cutting emissions of short-lived climate pollutants (SLCPs) Ė most notably methane, black carbon and some hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs). Widespread reductions, which complement the need for aggressive global action on carbon dioxide, contribute significantly to the goal of limiting warming to less than two degrees. Reducing SLCPs can also advance national priorities such as protecting air quality and public health, promoting food security, enhancing energy efficiency, and alleviat...[more]
Ireland will be giving $1 000 000 USD of funding, including to the World Bank's Trust Fund for Statistical Capacity Building and to the G.E.F. Trust Fund for the Capacity Building Initiative for Transparency. This multi-year funding will be distributed over a three year period. IReland is also supporting SIDS and LDCs experts attend the UN Statistical Commission's Inter Agency Expert Group. This funding will support the development of the statistical capacities of countries most in need, with a particular focus on Small Island Development States, and will facilitate their effective impleme...[more]
Green Economy is one of the core themes of the plan and the County aims to be at the forefront of the green economy by facilitating renewable energy infrastructure and promoting use of renewable energy among businesses and households throughout the County. Source: Waterford County, Ireland The County Waterford Model for Economic Growth brings together seven themes: Entrepreneurship & Innovation; Convergence; Knowledge Economy & Smart Economy; Vibrant Towns, Villages & Communities; Attract Profile Employers; Green Economy; Rural Development; and Quality of Life. These themes are inter-linke...[more]
The IHO capacity building programme seeks to assess and advise on how countries can best meet their international obligations and serve their own best interests by providing appropriate hydrographic and nautical charting services. Such services directly support safety of navigation, safety of life at sea, efficient sea transportation and the wider use of the seas and oceans in a sustainable way, including the protection of the marine environment, coastal zone management, fishing, marine resource exploration and exploitation, maritime boundary delimitation, maritime defence and security, and o...[more]
The Livestock Environmental Assessment and Performance (LEAP) Partnership is a first-of-its-kind, multi-stakeholder partnership of Governments, Private Sectors, NGOs and CSOs.LEAP guiding principles include: global, inclusive, consensus, transparency, scientific, comprehensive, continuous improvement and adoption. Objective: To build global consensus on science-based methodology, indicators and databases for understanding the environmental performance of livestock supply chains in order to shape evidence-based policy measures and business strategies. Vision: To support the transition towards m...[more]
Ireland will legislate domestically to prohibit the sale or manufacture of certain products containing microbe ads, including not just cosmetics, but also body care and cleansing products as well as detergents and abrasive surface cleaning products. This ban will mean a reduction in the amount of micro plastic particles entering our marine environments.
The environment chapter of the National Development Plan of Ireland covers transport, waste management, climate change, environmental research, and sustainable energy. Source: The Government of Ireland This policy brings together different sectoral investment policies into one overall framework, in order to promote co-ordination and alignment between sectoral policies, providing a financial framework within which government departments and agencies can plan and deliver the implementation of public investment. The Plan emphasises the importance attached to several horizontal themes, including...[more]
In 2008, Waterford County Council became the first local authority in Ireland to adopt a Climate Change Strategy. Source: Waterford County The objective was to illustrate the benefits of implementing an ambitious but realistic strategy aimed at reducing the county's CO2 emissions to organisations, both public and private at local, regional, national and international levels. The actions of the Climate Change Strategy focused on reducing CO2 emissions of both within the organisation and among the residents of County Waterford.