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Restoring Natural Capital Can Help Reduce Extreme Poverty

August 05, 2016 |

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Pushpam Kumar, Chief, Ecosystem Services’ Economics Unit, UNEP explains how restoring natural capital can lead to reductions in poverty around the world.

“Nairobi, 5 August 2016: In September 2015, when the international community embraced the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, better known as the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), they decided to make eradication of poverty and hunger as the first two SDGs.  A close look at the goals shows that most of the 17 SDGs relate to poverty and hunger. This is because these two topics are inextricably linked to inclusive economic growth, climate change, and the management of marine and terrestrial ecosystems.

Achieving the ambitious SDGs depends on designing integrated policies to improve the lives and livelihoods of people and ensure a safe and sound planet for all.

Poverty, whether relative or marginal, is an extreme form of deprivation. It is an involuntary situation faced by people at the margins of political, economic, ecological and social development. It is a form of deprivation where people lack access to resources and are unable to exercise their basic rights.

The World Bank estimates that approximately 896 million people, or 12 per cent of the global population, live on less than US$1.9 a day. Extreme poverty is when people are born poor, live their entire life in dismal poverty, may or may not come out of poverty, and when they die, they may pass nothing but poverty to their children. A world with 896 million poor people is both undemocratic and ecologically unsustainable…”

Read on at: United Nations Environment Programme

For more information, please contact: Pushpam Kumar:

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