In 2015 the world adopted the new 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), marking a historic shift in the global development agenda. A major focus moving forward will be the implementation agenda, particularly bottom-up local actions and solutions to achieve results across the range of environmental sustainability issues addressed in the SDGs. This project seeks to establish the enabling environment to make this happen in Kuwait.
The passage of this new global agenda converges with the enactment of Kuwait’s new Environmental Protection Law (EPL) (Law No. 42 of 2014), which sets an ambitious vision to scale-up environmental protection results across all sectors of development. The new law is a critical turning point for environmental governance in Kuwait, setting a more ambitious vision for environmental sustainability and providing the Kuwait Environment Public Authority (KEPA) an enhanced mandate to set implementing regulations, seek actions by sectoral Ministries, and achieving improved environmental compliance and enforcement.
The project supports a set of two strategic outputs meant to set an enabling environment for implementation of the new EPL: (1) Capacities for Effective Participation in Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEAs), and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), (2) Environmental Information Systems (EIS) enhanced including the use of statistics and indicators for measuring EPL implementation.
The project goal is to support the improvement of the sustainable management of the environment and natural resources in Kuwait and to contribute towards the development and implementation of comprehensive and integrated environmental strategies and policies for Kuwait based on the EPL and Kuwait’s commitments under the MEA and SDGs.
The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the Paris Climate Change Agreement all highlight that for development to be sustainable in the 21st century it must be resilient to increasingly complex ecological risks. In response, there are a number of global goals under the SDGs that together form a scaled-up agenda alongside other SDGs through an integrative manner for making development more environmentally sustainable:
- SDG 6 Ensure Availability and Sustainable Management of Water for All
- SDG 7 Ensuring Access to Affordable, Reliable, Sustainable and Modern Energy for All
- SDG 11 Making Cities and Settlements Inclusive, Safe, Resilient and Sustainable
- SDG 12 Ensure Sustainable Consumption and Production Patterns
- SDG 13 Take Urgent Action on Climate Change and Its Impacts
- SDG 14 Conserve and Sustainably Use the Oceans, Seas and Marine Resources
- SDG 15 Sustainable Use of Ecosystems and Combat Land Degradation & Biodiversity Loss
Altogether, these ‘green SDGs’ along the other SDGs represent a comprehensive and integrated approach with major breakthrough and shift in the development agenda. As the world now moves to the SDG implementation agenda, a key focus is on bottom-up local solutions. This holds special importance for Kuwait, which faces a number of serious environmental risks to the sustainability of its development goals.
The capacity to implement the SDGs and achieve greater environmental sustainability remains a major challenge in Kuwait. The project will align itself to assist Kuwait to meet its commitments under the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) agenda, and helping to implement measures called by the new EPL is crucial to fulfil such commitments through an integrated environmental governance support.
National monitoring is the most important level of monitoring and will rely on nationally defined sets of indicators. National ownership at all levels of the SDG framework is critical, and national monitoring must respond to national priorities and needs. Good data and clear metrics are critical for each country to take stock of where it stands, devise pathways for achieving the goals and track progress. The work and outcome of this consultancy will complement the work of the recently established SDGs National Committee, to make sure all efforts are combined towards the achievement of the SDGs.