United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs Sustainable Development

France, Germany and Switzerland

Proposal for statement by France, Germany and Switzerland
Focus area 10. Sustainable cities and human settlements
Mr Co-chair,
We reiterate our support for a goal on sustainable cities and human settlements.
We support in particular the following targets::
- First, we support the proposed target a)
- Given the key importance of good governance and local authorities, we support an amended target c) to build the capacities of local and regional authorities, through participatory processes, for planning and implementing urban policies. Only local authorities are likely to strengthen national policies.
- Thirdly, we also support target b) on sustainable transport ensuring also that transport is fairly distributed. Road safety should be one indicator to measure the safety dimension.
- However, we suggest addressing urban air quality in a separate target. This target should read: Improve air quality and reduce the burden of air pollution related diseases. Possible indicators should include the particulate concentration and SO2, NOx and Ozone in urban air.
- A fourth target would be: Ensure that urban infrastructure are planned, implemented and managed in an integrated, participatory and sustainable manner that guarantees availability of green spaces for human wellbeing and conserves and promotes urban biodiversity.
- We support target d) but propose to reword so as to reduce the environmental impacts of cities.
- We also support the increase by x% the number of cities adopting and implementing policies and plans toward strengthening resilience and adaptation to climate change, natural disasters and man-made hazards, similar to target e).
- We support the target to enhance social cohesion and personal security, and ensure universal access to inclusive, safe and green public spaces by 2030. In this view, we would support mentioning preservation of cultural and natural heritage as a source of social cohesion.
- We should acknowledge the need, expressed by many developing cities, for local economic development (which could be included under a goal on economic growth).
These targets reflect all three dimensions of sustainable development and contribute greatly to the achievement of other goals, in particular the goals on poverty, health, economic growth, water, energy, ecosystems and biodiversity, sustainable peace and non-violent societies.