Press release

Sustainable urbanization is also a challenge for small island developing states: Mayor of Victoria

December 18, 2013

The Mayor of Victoria, Mrs. Jacqueline Moustache-Belle, has stressed the importance of building sustainable cities and for all actors to respond adequately to the challenges and opportunities of urbanization.

The Mayor, who was recently elected as one of the Co-Presidents of the United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG), was heading the delegation at a special event held at the United Nations Headquarters in New York on “Sustainable Cities; Key to Sustainability and Development”.

The three-day special event was being organized by United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG) – World, UN Habitat and the Group of friends of sustainable cities to further the dialogue on the need to consider urbanisation as a specific issue for the post 2015 development agenda.

The discussions provided an opportunity to advocate for a greater role for local governments in the elaboration of the sustainable development goals. Ahead of the Open Working Group session on sustainable cites and human settlements scheduled to take place from 6 to 10 January 2014 in New York, a call was made for the adoption of a stand-alone goal on sustainable urbanization.

In her intervention, the Mayor highlighted the need for the post-2015 development agenda to meet the expectations of all and of the need to identify new sources of sustainable growth like the blue economy.

With 70% of the world population expected to live in urban areas by 2050, the Mayor stressed that sustainable urbanisation offers substantial benefits to urban and rural areas alike.

She indicated that sustainable urbanization is an issue that concerns all the members of the United Nations family.

“With increasing population, changing consumption patterns and the limited land available, rapid urbanization represents a major challenge for cities of small island developing states.

In addressing the urbanisation phenomenon, a post 2015 development agenda should therefore focus on the challenges and opportunities that are shaping the twenty-first century cities-big and small”.