The rising population in cities is rapidly chocking urban authorities in ensuring that they are safe and accessing inclusive services.
Hundreds of delegates are in US based Salt Lake City, Utah entangled in discussions at a three-day UN conference (26-28th) on how to build inclusive and sustainable cities and communities. It is the 68th United National Civil Society Conference.
This conference is informed by a conception that 68% of the world’s population will be living in urban areas in 2050 up from the current 55% – therefore experts are concerned that this shift will increase challenges related to inclusiveness, equitable and sustainablity.
In the conference concept paper it is noted the complexities of urban life grow, communities and local leaders are at the forefront of finding sustainable solutions to poverty and inadequate housing, hunger and health, clean water, energy, environmental degradation and climate change, infrastructure, transport, education, migration, violence and gender equality.
These and other challenges are interconnected with similar issues in rural areas and municipalities of all sizes, where activists and civil society organizations partner with governments and the private sector to ensure that communities are inclusive, equitable and sustainable.
This is reflecting Salt Lake City’s leadership and demonstrated commitment on sustainability issues, will focus on SDG 11, “to make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable by 2030”.
The agenda is exploring the interlinkages among all 17 Goals, including critical issues relating to gender.
Salt Lake City is the capital and most populous municipality of the U.S. state of Utah. With an estimated population of 190,884 in 2014, the city is the core of the Salt Lake City metropolitan area, which has a population of 1,153,340.
Meanwhile, this conference is co-hosted by the UN Department of Global Communications, Salt Lake City, and the NGO Executive Committee.
Delegates were treated to plenary sessions, interactive thematic sessions, NGO-sponsored workshops, exhibits and a youth hub.
The speakers and attendees include leaders and other representatives from NGOs, UN agencies, academia, faith traditions, the public and private sectors and youth from around the world.