Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has said world leaders must utilise their visions to set the Post-2015 Development Agenda and decide on a legal framework for climate change beyond 2020 for the sustainable development of the world.
She said this while addressing a discussion titled “Leaders Dialogue: High Level Political Forum-From Vision to Action” in the UN Headquarters in New York on Tuesday.
“The world leaders must recognise the two issues and provide visionary leadership and sincere commitment for achieving common goals for the sustenance of our world,” said the Prime Minister.
“Our decisions must be aimed at ensuring the welfare of each and every human being and encompass all living species to have a sustainable world – a world that we would like to leave to our children and to the future generations,” she added.
She said Bangladesh is obliged to stress on the three pillars of sustainable development — economic, social and environmental — with adaptation and mitigation programmes.
“Sustainable development is imperative for Bangladesh for its national survival, particularly due to climate change,” she said.
Bangladesh is in the forefront of climate discourse due to its vulnerability to climate change as a frontline state.
“A major challenge of climate change for Bangladesh is global warming and an increase of one degree Celsius in temperature would result in a meter rise in sea- level submerging a fifth of its land mass and creating turmoil over 30 million “climate migrants” in a country already densely populated,” she said.
Sheikh Hasina said Bangladesh is active in the Open Working Group for Sustainable Development due to the deep concerns which prompted it to submit a set of nationally agreed targets for the Post-2015 Development Agenda to the UN.
The Prime Minister said the Forum, established with the mandate of Rio plus 20 to build on the strengths, experiences, resources and inclusive participation modalities of the Commission on Sustainable Development, should recognize the special needs of the LDCs, LLDCs, and SIDS in realizing sustainable development goals.
Most countries in these groups are lagging behind in attaining the various Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), she said.
“Our experience has been that expectations as well as commitments are important for sustainable development.”
She said Bangladesh due to efficient use of its resources, local leadership, indigenous capabilities and innovations has made notable success in some MDGs.
Equally, delivery of the pledge of the developed nations to provide 0.7 percent of Gross National Product (GNP) as Official Development Assistance (ODA) and 0.2 percent of GNP as ODA for the LDCs as well as the transfer of technologies to the LDCs, and the other deprived groups, are important for development, said Hasina.
The Prime Minister said how fast-paced advancements in science and technology is allowing dramatic socioeconomic progress to take place within states.
“They are also drawing states closer and making our world small, with its accompanying challenges,” she said.
“The abundance of natural and technological resources is at our disposal today, however, they offer the Forum the opportunity to make right choices in the face of the new challenges of our time,” she said.