2020 – A 'Super Year' for Activism and Action

The Agenda 2030 is set to expire ten years from now. 21 of its 169 SDG targets are meant to be reached this year alone. The year 2020 is thus being hailed as a 'super year' for activism and action by global advocacy groups.

© IISD SDG Knowledge Hub 2020

The article “It’s Time to Talk about Expectations for Super Year 2020” by IISD’s SDG Knowledge Hub outlines this year’s opportunities concerning gender (SDG 5), climate (SDG 13), life below water and on land (SDGs 14 and 15), responsible consumption and production (SDG 12) as well as means of implementation (SDG 17):

The 25th anniversary of the Beijing Programme of Action, the most progressive blueprint on women’s rights, as well as the now global #MeToo movement have built serious momentum for gender equality this year. The President of UNGA’s 74th session has announced plans to promote gender equality in the context of inclusion and women’s role in peace and security matters.

Regarding climate action, the progress of last year’s UNFCCC meetings (COP 25) was severely undermined by the discord between the demands of people and science as well as between countries looking to the future and those focused on the past. The resulting frustration is strived to be overcome by this year’s COP 26 and the more ambitious updates of Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) due in early 2020.

Last year’s 'Global Assessment of the State of Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services' report published by the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) points to a state of emergency concluding that a million species are currently threatened with extinction due to human activity. The international community is expected to use the momentum built up by the report’s findings as well as by the 12 SDG targets relating to SDG 14 and 15 expiring this year. 2020 marks the beginning of the UN Decade of Plant Health and will see the second UN Ocean Conference, the World Conservation Congress hosted by the International Union for Conservation of Nature as well as an UNGA high level 'Nature Summit'.

75 years after its establishment, the UN has an agenda packed with events and stocktaking opportunities. 2020 has thus by all means the possibility to become the expected super year it is being hailed as.

To read the full article on the IISD SDG Knowledge Hub, please click here.