The United Nations warns that its 2030 development goals will be in jeopardy and 575 million people will remain very poor

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — In a somber report Monday, the United Nations warned that at the current pace of global progress, in 2030 575 million people will still be living in extreme poverty and 84 million children will be out of school — and will be be the case It takes 286 years to achieve equality between men and women.

The report on progress towards 17 far-reaching UN goals, adopted by world leaders in 2015 to improve the lives of more than 7 billion people around the world, says that only 15% of the some 140 peer-assessed specific targets are on track to be met by the end of the decade.

Nearly half of the targets are moderately or severely off course. it said, and of that 30% either didn’t move at all or set back steps, including on important goals in the areas of poverty, hunger and climate.

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Ambitious goals for 2030 include ensuring that hunger is eradicated and no one lives on less than $2.15 a day, which is the extreme poverty line, to ensure every child has a quality primary and secondary education make it possible to achieve gender equality and ensure that all people have clean water. sanitation and access to affordable energy, reducing inequalities and taking urgent action to tackle climate change.

“If we act now, the 2030 Agenda could become an epitaph for a world that it could have been,” UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said in a foreword to the report. “If progress is not made, inequalities will continue to widen, increasing the risk of a fragmented two-speed world.”

The report was released ahead of a summit Guterres called during the annual gathering of world leaders at the UN General Assembly in September, which he said will be “a moment of truth and reckoning.”

The Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs, Li Junhua, said conflicts, including the war in UkraineClimate change, the ongoing effects of The COVID-19 pandemic, particularly its devastating financial impact developing countries and geopolitical tensions threaten to undo any “hard-won progress” towards the Goals.

In a foreword, he said the pandemic had brought the largest drop in childhood immunizations in three decades, a rise in deaths from tuberculosis and malaria, and learning disabilities in 80% of the 104 countries surveyed. It also disrupted three decades of poverty reduction progress and led to the largest increase in inequality between countries in three decades, he said.

“By May 2023, the devastating effects of war, conflict and human rights abuses had displaced an incredible 110 million people, including 35 million refugees – the highest number on record,” said the ECOSOC chief.

Li said at a press conference unveiling the report that at the September summit, the United Nations would expect political leaders to present “a new roadmap” to accelerate action at global, regional and national levels to meet the goals to be achieved by 2030.

With seven years to go, the report states that meeting the targets is “in deep trouble” and “it is time to sound the alarm”.

Under current conditions, not only would 575 million people still be living in extreme poverty by 2030, but only about a third of countries would meet the goal of reducing the national poverty rate by half.

“Frighteningly, world hunger is returning to levels not seen since 2005 and food prices remain higher than in 2015-2019 in more countries,” the report says.

In 2021, the number of people suffering from hunger hit nearly 800 million, well above pre-pandemic levels. In 2022, an estimated 45 million children under the age of five were wasting, 148 million had stunted growth and 37 million were overweight, it said.

As for education, the report says that years of underinvestment and loss of learning without much effort will mean that by 2030 not only will an estimated 84 million children be out of school, but some 300 million students will not be able to learn basic literacy skills and math skills will be lacking to be successful in life. and only one in six countries will reach the goal of a general school leaving certificate.

In addressing global warming, the report states: “If ever the short-sightedness of our dominant economic and political systems has come to light, it is the intensification of the war on nature.”

The small window of opportunity to prevent temperatures from rising above the internationally agreed threshold of 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 degrees Fahrenheit) to prevent the worst effects of the climate crisis is fast closing, the report said. and the critical turning point of 1.5 degrees is likely to be reached or exceeded by 2035.

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