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GMR 2009: Goal 7: Ensure Environmental Sustainability

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Targets:

  • Integrate the principles of sustainable development into country policies and programs and reverse the loss of environmental resources
  • Reduce biodiversity loss, achieving by 2010 a significant reduction in the rate of loss
  • Halve by 2015 the proportion of people without sustainable access to safe drinking water and basic sanitation
  • Have achieved a significant improvement by 2020 in the lives of at least 100 million slum dwellers

Population without access to an improved water source or sanitation facilities
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Access to sanitation refers to the percentage of population with at least adequate access to excreta facilities (private or shared, but not public) that can effectively prevent human, animal, and insect contact with excreta. Access to improved sources of water refers to the percentage of population with reasonable access to a permanent source of safe water in their dwelling or within a reasonable distance from it. Regional estimates for both indicators are computed using country data covering 97 percent of developing countries’ total population. All regions but Sub-Saharan Africa and the Middle East and North Africa are on track to achieve the water access target, based on current trends. Prospects are bleaker for the sanitation access target, with only the Middle East and North Africa on track and Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia lagging far behind.

Proportion of countries on track to achieve the targets for access to improved  water and sanitation
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Forty-nine percent of the developing countries with available data have achieved or are on track to achieve the improved water target, while 23 percent have achieved or are on track to achieve the improved sanitation target. Fourteen of 21 countries with available data in Europe and Central Asia have achieved the target to improve water access. In the Middle East and North Africa, 7 of 13 countries with available data are not on track. Progress has been much slower for the improved sanitation target, and no Sub-Saharan African country and almost two-thirds of countries in the other regions are not on track, based on available data.

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Carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions are derived from burning fossil energy and manufacturing cement. The United States, Euro Area, and Japan produce almost 75 percent of the CO2 emissions from all high-income countries. However, about half of the total global CO2 emissions comes from the developing world, particularly from China, the Russian Federation, and India. China’s share of global emissions has risen from 11 to 20 percent between 1990 and 2005.

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Deforestation, resulting largely from land use change, has been about 13 million hectares a year, and net forest lost has been 7.3 million hectares. Because forests are important to mitigating climate change, deforestation creates challenges to fostering sustainable development. The fastest rates of forest lost from 1990 to 2005 were in Sub-Saharan Africa (7.1 percent), Latin America and the Caribbean (7.0 percent), and East Asia and the Pacific (1.6 percent). The other regions had increases in their forest areas.

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