Discussions aimed at “Protecting the Planet” will be one of the major highlights of the 2016 United Nations Private Sector Forum on September 19, 2016 in New York as business and government leaders gather to seek sustainable solutions to global issues. Sahara Group’s Executive Director, Tonye Cole will lead conversations on the subject and share the experiences of the leading African energy conglomerate in promoting the well-being of the planet.
The 2016 edition of the UN Private Sector Forum will focus on the theme: “Business and the 2030 Agenda: Securing the Way Forward.” It will be hosted by the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon with huge expectations that the Forum will reinforce the need for multi-sectoral collaboration in promoting the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). About 350 Chief Executives, Heads of State and Government, leaders of UN Agencies, Funds and Programmes, and leaders from civil society, business associations, foundations and investor groups will attend the forum.
Experts say no fewer than 22 million people have been displaced by climate or weather related events since 2008, setting the tone for further dire impacts on communities, businesses and humanity. According to the World Health Organisation (W.H.O), the number of reported weather-related natural disasters has more than tripled since the 1960s globally. W.H.O also predicts that between 2030 and 2050, climate change is expected to cause approximately 250 000 additional deaths per year, from malnutrition, malaria, diarrhoea and heat stress. The direct damage cost to health is estimated to be between US$ 2-4 billion/year by 2030.
Cole stated that the need to protect the planet is probably “the most daunting challenge in the world today and requires genuine and sustained interventions as well as partnerships that transcend global politics and borders.”
“We need to engage the issue without sentiments. There must be a passionate desire for introspection that makes us all take another look at how much more we can do to salvage the situation. Vital issues like the migrant crisis, poverty, hunger, pollution, food security and natural disasters, among others need to be addressed sustainably. The Business community should be a key stakeholder in this quest and Sahara Group is delighted to be part of the forum.”
Cole said the forum would also enable business, government and UN leaders set the agenda for eliminating hunger and poverty, enabling all people to live in dignity, advancing responsible business leadership and leveraging business innovation to accelerate sustainability and prevent instability.
Sahara Group currently serves on the Advisory Board of the United Nations Sustainability Development Goals Fund (UN-SDGF) which supports sustainable development activities through integrated and multidimensional joint programmes. The energy conglomerate remains committed to promoting a healthy environment, inclusive economic growth for poverty eradication, capacity building, food security and access to potable water.