The Climate Post: COVID19

By Dr. Gillian Greer Former Assistant Vice Chancellor Equity and Human Resources (Victoria University of Wellington) Co-editor of “The People’s Report” I began this Blog in April, with the words, “It’s so long since I wrote a blog that I’m sitting at my unusually tidy desk thinking, “But where do I begin?” It was a golden autumn day, in the middle of a pandemic. Waves larger than I have ever seen here were pounding the beach nearby. The UN was urging countries to work together to defeat Covid-19, but the US...

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Human Rights and the SDGs: Bridging the Gap to Achieve More Together

By Katharine Woolrych International Relations and Development Studies Graduate As Amina Mohammed, United Nations Deputy Secretary-General, noted in March 2019: ‘human rights are an intrinsic part of sustainable development — and sustainable development is a powerful vehicle for the realization of all human rights’. Every day human rights defenders work on SDG-pertinent issues across New Zealand and around the world, from affordable housing, to environmental protection, to justice system reform. Indeed, the human rights agenda and that of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) not only share a common vision for human empowerment, but rely upon one another to achieve...

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Sharing a people’s perspective on the SDGs

By Ronja Ievers (Hui E! Community Aotearoa) E nga mana, E nga reo It has been 4 years since New Zealand made a commitment, when it signed onto the global 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, to empower people, reduce inequalities, promote social, economic and political inclusion, and to leave no one behind. Yet knowledge about the SDGs in New Zealand is still fragmented, and government engagement is low. Inequalities continue to exist and we are facing a major threat to our land, bio diversity, waterways and marine life. When the government therefore announced to present its first progress report...

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The Importance of Biodiversity

By Sylvie McLean Our role in enhancing biodiversity outside of “protected areas.” In any discussion of environmental issues it is important to step back and look at the bigger picture, to consider what values you hold and what your priorities are, and make robust, considered discussions. What does biodiversity mean to you? Is it national parks and the wilderness within them? Or is it your back garden, the trees that line the streets or the plants you have in your bedroom? Is it the stream that runs through your local park or the ocean of the harbour? What is...

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Biodiversity crisis in Aotearoa New Zealand

By Mike Joy and Sylvie Mclean Biodiversity is a term that means different things to different people. Its use has exploded with people’s increased appreciation of the magnitude of the decline and the importance of diverse biotas to the human future. Popularly biodiversity is understood as the number of species in a given country or ecosystem. To scientists it is a deeper concept that includes genetic and ecosystem diversity and has crucial components like endemicity (species found nowhere else), native diversity (the proportion of native species) and keystone species (species that are crucial to ecosystem function). There are three...

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It is all about Shared, and Sustainable, Wellbeing

By Girol Karacaoglu After quoting Thomas Jefferson (”The care of human life and happiness is the only legitimate object of good government”), Layard and O’Donnell (2015) go on to write: “What should be the goal of public policy? We agree with Thomas Jefferson. What matters is the quality of life, as people themselves experience it. And the best judge of each person’s life is that same person. Is she happy with her life; is she satisfied? In a democracy that should be the criterion for good policy” (p. 77). Needless to say, there are numerous other possible philosophical...

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