City of Newcastle makes sustainability a priority as United Nations goals drive local action

02 Jul 2020

City of Newcastle has joined forces with six other leading Hunter organisations to champion the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to create a better, more sustainable future for all.

The SDGs are a universal call to action to end poverty, fight inequality, protect the planet and ensure peace and prosperity for future generations. There are 17 Goals addressing global challenges, from clean energy and climate action to human rights advocacy and gender equality.

The City has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Compass Housing, CIFAL – University of Newcastle, Kumalie, Port of Newcastle, Hunter Water and Port Waratah Coal Services to grow and improve the implementation of the SDGs within the Hunter Region.

Sustainable-Development-Goals-MOU-signatories.jpgRepresentatives of the Hunter Region SDG Memorandum of Understanding signatories meet via Zoom.

In addition, City of Newcastle has joined the Hunter Region SDG Taskforce, launched in May. As a key member, the City will host a webinar as part of a monthly program on Goal 15 (Life on Land) to coincide with Biodiversity Month in September.

Deputy Lord Mayor Councillor Declan Clausen said City of Newcastle was committed to achieving each Goal by 2030, underpinned by their integration in the City’s Annual Reporting in 2019 and Community Strategic Plan in 2018, and welcomed the opportunity for further collaboration across the region.

“City of Newcastle is already leading the local government sector on climate action, making great strides in the field over the past five years and becoming the first NSW Council to become powered by 100% renewable energy,” Cr Clausen said.

“Our 2025 Climate Action Plan, currently in development, will set our goals and priorities for the next five years to build on these achievements.

“Signing the MOU and gaining a seat at the table on the Hunter Region SDG Taskforce continues our transformation into a more sustainable city and fosters a strong, collaborative approach to implementing the Sustainable Development Goals locally.”

In another coup, City of Newcastle has become the 11th city in the Oceania and Asia-Pacific Region to join the 2020 SDGs Cities Challenge.

Facilitated by Melbourne University’s Connected Cities Lab, the 2020 SDGs Cities Challenge is a 10-month action research project designed to support participating cities in working towards implementing the targets and indicators. Expertise is provided by local government, academia and business, including the Business Council for Sustainable Development Australia and the Banksia Foundation, to identify the best approach for cities to deliver on the SDGs.

City of Newcastle joins Davao City (Philippines), Alor Gajah Municipal Council (Malaysia), City of Dehradun (India), Port Vila (Vanuatu), City of Honiara (Solomon Islands), City of Melbourne, City of Warrnambool, City of Whitehorse, University of Melbourne Student Precinct, and City of Woollahra in participating in the Challenge.