An acceptance letter, paving the way for Noida and Greater Noida to participate in the Global Sustainable Cities 2025 Initiative, was formally handed over to UN Global Sustainability Index Institute (UNGSII) chief Roland Schatz, in the presence of UN director-general Michael Moller and leaders of other cities participating in the flagship programme, on February 8, 2019, an official statement said. “The decision of the government of Uttar Pradesh was conveyed by BN Singh, the district magistrate of Gautam Buddh Nagar, after getting approval on the proposal by the government,” the district administration said in the statement.
Representing Noida and Greater Noida at the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) Lab in Davos, Switzerland, were Shubhro Sen, the principal advisor India for UNGSII and Ajay Davesar, a senior advisor for UNGSII India, it said. The district magistrate pledged his full support to the programme as an ‘exciting global showcase’. “We thank Dr (Shubhro) Sen for originally nominating Noida and successfully presenting its credentials in Heidelberg in March last year and Scahtz for honouring us with a visit to our city to personally invite us,” Singh said.
At the session in Davos, Schatz highlighted that the SDG Cities initiative will lead to an unprecedented inflow of global knowledge, resources and capacity-building into Noida and Greater Noida via various UN agencies, partners and corporate supporters, the statement said. “The overarching goal is to work together with other participating cities to create sustainability, innovation and research hubs and think for the long term. Ultimately the SDG cities platform is about our children and their children; it’s about enhanced quality of life and nature of the world we leave behind for them,” Schatz said.
Sen said it is a very proud moment for all of India that the twin cities were the first to be selected in the ‘University City’ category. “The cities are now part of a global platform to bring advanced know-how, best practices and shared learning from global experts, best-in-class corporate partners and multiple UN agencies,” he said. “The large positive multiplier from this programme will also pave the way for many other cities in India to adapt and emulate best global practices,” Davesar added.
Noida and Greater Noida to participate in Global Sustainable Cities 2025 initiative
The Uttar Pradesh government has permitted the Gautam Buddh Nagar administration to participate in the prestigious Global Sustainable Cities 2025 initiative, officials said
January 16, 2019: After due consideration, Noida and Greater Noida have been permitted to participate in the SDG (Sustainable Development Goal) Cities initiative, the chief secretary of the UP government, Anup Chandra Pandey said, in a letter, on January 15, 2019. Noida and Greater Noida, the twin cities in Gautam Buddh Nagar, adjoining Delhi, were, on November 25, 2018, invited by the UN Global Sustainability Index Institute (UNGSII) to become a member of the initiative.
Noida and Greater Noida were among the only 25 cities across the world, which have been selected in five categories by the UN Global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) Cities initiative, senior UN advisor and CEO of UNGSII, Roland Schatz had said, when he extended the formal invitation to the district administration. Noida and Greater Noida have been chosen under the ‘University City’ category of the initiative, along with cities such as Cambridge (UK), Palo Alto (US), Hiedelberg (Germany) and Espoo (Finland). The twin cities, according to officials, have eight universities, over 600 primary government schools, 139 public schools affiliated to the CBSE, with a collective student strength running into lakhs.
Signing a contract will enable Noida and Greater Noida to get ‘multi-million dollar finance and implementation know-how, for each of the 17 SDGs along the defined KPIs (key performance indicators)’, among others from the UNGSII Foundation, an official note had said. The district will have to shell out 1,00,000 Euros every year till 2025, as administrative support to the initiative from participant cities, in return for funds and resources for capacity-building and working towards achieving the SDGs, Schatz had said earlier. In his letter to the government, the district magistrate had suggested roping in local private partners to arrange the funds in the form of corporate social responsibility (CSR), in order to reduce the burden on the state.
In September 2015, 193 heads of state, including India, had pledged their commitment to implement the 17 Sustainable Development Goals at the United Nations. The 17 SDGs, otherwise known as the Global Goals, are a universal call to action to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure that all people enjoy peace and prosperity. The UNGSII Foundation was created to assist and accelerate the implementation process.