These recommendations are borne out of the collective voices of youth worldwide, reflecting their determination to achieve intergenerational justice and the implementation of United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The role of Youth Delegates on HLPF and many other international forums has been to make interventions in the main sessions, organize their own side events, take part in panel discussion and the overall HLPF activities of their respective country delegations. With these recommendations, we aim to bring together the voices of youth and create a shared message to encourage policymakers to adopt a long-term perspective in their decision-making. Our goal is to promote intergenerational justice by amplifying the inclusion of youth voices in decision-making processes more strongly than ever before.
These recommendations apply to every Member States. It is imperative that each recommendation integrates an intersectional lens, taking into account the intricate dynamics of the global power structure. The sustainability crisis facing the global society encompasses various aspects, including social and cultural sustainability, which are intertwined with ecological sustainability. Due to historical injustices, special emphasis should be placed on acknowledging global power dynamics and ensuring equitable distribution of resources, including efforts to fulfill the 0.7% target on development cooperation.
It is essential to emphasize that all of these recommendations are not universally applicable as-is, but when implemented, they should be adjusted to meet the specific needs of each context. This is possible by local reviews, considering the unique cultural aspects of each community and region. The local voice should be granted a significant role in shaping the process and decision-making. By honoring and amplifying local perspectives, we ensure that the solutions are contextually relevant, sustainable, and inclusive.
Furthermore, particular emphasis should be placed on safeguarding the rights and empowering individuals in vulnerable positions, including women, children, people with disabilities, older people, and other marginalized groups. By empowering these perspectives and promoting inclusion, we foster a more just and sustainable future that uplifts the voices of all and leaves no one behind.
To achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), several overarching recommendations can be considered:
- Strengthening Agreed Global Frameworks
- Adequate Financing
- Monitoring and Accountability
- Capacity Building and Participation of Civil Society
- Long-term Planning for Future Generations
- Leave No One Behind
SDG 6 Clean Water and Sanitation
We strongly advocate for a global binding legal framework and robust commitments to protect and conserve water resources worldwide, recognizing the shared responsibility for addressing global challenges. We emphasize the importance of transboundary cooperation and the recognition that global challenges are shared responsibility and therefore require shared solutions. The world’s water system is a wholeness and should be treated as such.
1. Strengthening International Agreements. Advocate for the strengthening and enforcement of international agreements, such as the Basel and Rotterdam Conventions, which aim to regulate chemical use and safeguard water resources, thus bolstering global efforts towards sustainable water management.
2. Global Regulations for Water Resources. Implementation of robust global regulations that ensure the sustainable utilization of ecosystems while minimizing potential harm to water resources, fostering responsible practices and safeguarding the integrity of our water systems. Legal frameworks should address the urgent need to safeguard and restore freshwater areas, similar to the 30% protection target set for oceans in the COP15 agreement
3. Sustainable Water Infrastructure Solutions and access to water. Provide support to develop and construct water systems, including innovative solutions that enable sanitation without excessive water usage. Increase investments in water infrastructure development to ensure the access to the water. Ensure the transfer of knowledge and technical expertise to local communities.
4. Water-Efficient Value Chains. Promote and incentivize the adoption of water-efficient practices across the entire value chains of food and clothing production, fostering sustainable resource management and conservation.
5. Environmental Impact Disclosure. Implement regulatory measures that mandate companies to disclose comprehensive information about their environmental impact, encompassing factors such as water usage and pollution, thereby fostering transparency and accountability in corporate practices.
6. Carbon Credit Markets. Provide support and facilitate the establishment of carbon credit markets, which can stimulate local job creation through restoration projects, encouraging corporations to actively offset their environmental impact and contribute to the preservation of water resources.
- Sufficient hygiene which makes it possible to provide healthcare with special attention on those in need in the contexts of conflict and refugees. Water infrastructure and healthcare are interlinked which is why ensuring adequate hygiene is pivotal for example in facilitating healthcare delivery, particularly with a focus on vulnerable populations amidst conflict and refugee contexts. To achieve a robust healthcare ecosystem, concerted actions are required to strengthen water infrastructures and explore innovative waterless hygiene solutions.
SDG 7 Affordable and Clean Energy
We emphasize the urgent need for comprehensive regulations targeting fossil fuels and carbon dioxide emissions, taking into account historical responsibility and their distribution in our globalized world.
1. Fossil fuel regulation and decarbonization. Enact regulations that phase out fossil fuel usage and reduce carbon dioxide emissions, acknowledging the historical context and promoting a fair distribution of responsibilities among nations.
2. Green transportation.Prioritize the development of efficient and affordable land-based transportation systems, such as improving train connections, making travel by land more accessible and economical compared to air travel. This approach supports the green transition in the transportation sector.
3. Redirecting subsidies and incentives. Redirect subsidies away from fossil fuels and redirect economic incentives towards the construction and expansion of renewable energy infrastructure, encouraging the adoption of sustainable energy sources.
4. Local green energy. Establish regulatory frameworks that empower and enable local renewable energy communities. It empowers and enables communities to play a pivotal role in the transition towards clean and affordable energy, ensuring a sustainable future driven by local voices.
SDG 9 Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure
To drive progress in industry, innovation, and infrastructure, we recommend fostering the responsible use of platforms, ensuring data security, and promoting global regulations. Additionally, equipping individuals with the necessary skills and knowledge, including information literacy and critical reading skills, is vital for inclusive access and effective utilization of data.
1. Responsible and transparent use of data. Promote transparency in data use by acknowledging the historical imbalances in data gathering. Implement robust mechanisms for data collection and curation that prioritize diversity, inclusivity, and fairness. Adopt rigorous validation processes and ongoing monitoring of machine learning and AI systems to mitigate biases and ensure equitable outcomes in decision-making.
2. Data security. Enhance data security measures to protect sensitive information. Advocate for global regulations that ensure data integrity and confidentiality across industries and regions.
3. Foster data literacy skills among individuals. Empower people to access, evaluate, and utilize data effectively, promoting equitable and inclusive participation in the digital society.
6. Increasing and improving of technical and vocational education. The achievement of goal 9 requires technical and other skills such as critical thinking and understanding of human behavior in addition to skills the vocational education gives. The quality of the education need to ensured as well as the access to the education, especially in the global south.
SDG 11 Sustainable Cities and Communities
To foster sustainable and inclusive cities and communities, we recommend prioritizing urban planning that promotes equity and addresses segregation. It is crucial to enhance inclusion and participation, particularly for marginalized groups, through active engagement and a comprehensive understanding of equity promotion and intersectional approaches.
1. Inclusive and sustainable urban planning. Prioritize equity and sustainability in urban planning, considering all communities and incorporating principles of accessibility, green spaces, biodiversity, and sustainable infrastructure from the start. Provide education and training to integrate these principles throughout the planning and design process.
2. Infrastructure which supports public transportation and accessibility of the transportation. Promote the integration of accessible and efficient public transportation systems that reduce reliance on private vehicles and encourage sustainable mobility options.
3. Infrastructure which supports sustainable lifestyle. Sustainability needs to be considered as a starting point when planning communities and cities. Solutions that promote circular economy and waste management are essential to achieve sustainable ways of life.
4. Youth city councils and other initiatives to increase the participation of marginalized groups on decision- and policy making. Establishing youth city councils and other similar platforms to different contexts, without forgetting the most vulnerable youth for example in contexts of refugee camps that enable young people, especially those from marginalized backgrounds, to actively participate in decision-making processes related to urban planning and community development. Provide necessary resources and support to ensure their voices are heard and their perspectives are considered.
5. Empowering Local Communities. Enhance capacity-building efforts focused on promoting the participation of marginalized groups. Provide training and education that emphasizes inclusive practices and fosters a comprehensive understanding of equality promotion and intersectional approaches. This can help empower marginalized communities to advocate for their needs and aspirations effectively. To achieve this recommendation it is essential to note the importance of leaders who are close to the community such as religious leaders or local politicians.
6. Promoting sustainability by ensuring the safety of cities. Safety is an essential part of achieving sustainability and needs to be taken into account already during the planning and building of cities and neighborhoods. Intersectional understanding of the actions and reasons behind people’s choices and opportunities to choose a place to live should be noted on policy level.
In conclusion, it is imperative to recognize that addressing the challenges outlined across these recommendations requires collective action and a commitment to sharing best practices while acknowledging the importance of adapting solutions to local contexts. To establish a sustainable future that upholds intergenerational justice, it is crucial to acknowledge that sustainability issues transcend borders, emphasizing shared responsibility to take action.
Urgent transformative change is needed to prioritize sustainability. Only through comprehensive change, sustainability is possible to integrate into all aspects of our global society. By working together, sharing knowledge, and adopting sustainable practices, we can forge a path towards a future where economic, cultural, social, and environmental considerations are harmoniously balanced. Especial emphasis is on education which is a cross-cutting tool for all of the goals.
Together, let us join forces to shape a sustainable future that encompasses the well-being of both present and future generations. By acknowledging our shared responsibility and embracing collective action, we can address global challenges. By placing sustainability at the forefront of our actions, we have the power to create a world where human progress thrives in harmony with the natural environment, leaving an enduring legacy for the generations that follow.