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Green Cities: To build back better for SDGs – A new powerful venture
18 Sep 2020 -  The world is becoming more and more urbanized. Today, 55 percent of the world’s population resides in urban areas and by 2050 the urban population is expected to rise to 68 percent mainly in low-income countries. Cities already consume almost 80 percent of the total energy produced in the world and absorb up to 70 percent of the food supply. To address these challenges, cities are being called upon to take a more active role in contributing to national governments’ efforts in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Population growth and rapid urbanization imply dietary shifts and an increasing demand for basic goods and services, as well as growing competition for natural resources to ensure access to healthy diets for all. Local administrations are finding it more and more difficult to meet the needs of urban and peri-urban populations and the COVID-19 pandemic has added new challenges, such as food system disruptions, loss of jobs and food insecurity, worsening conditions especially for the most vulnerable.
The main objective of the FAO Green Cities Initiative and its action programme is to increase people’s well-being through better access to improved products and services provided by urban and peri-urban forestry, agriculture and food systems on a sustainable basis.
The event will highlight initiatives that are scaling up innovation and accelerating action, including the Milan Food Policy Pact, the New Urban Agenda, the World Sustainable Urban Food Centre of Valencia, the FAO Hand-in-Hand Initiative and other strategic partnerships.
The event will also feature testimonials from metropolitan, intermediary and small cities from around the world that are in line with the FAO Green Cities Initiative. It will also be an opportunity for all stakeholders, including national and local governments, UN Agencies and international organization and city networks, development organizations and donors to join the Initiative as active partners, while ensuring that urbanization becomes an opportunity for cities to be more sustainable and resilient, helping achieve the SDGs and leaving no one behind.
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