World leaders warn hunger, climate goals in peril

STORY: A to-do list of Sustainable Development Goals set in 2015 appeared to be in peril, according to world leaders meeting at the United Nations this week.

Their declaration - adopted by consensus at a summit before the annual U.N. General Assembly - warns that if there’s no urgency soon, the world may soon face serious consequences.

A list of 17 development goals were established to wipe out hunger and extreme poverty and battle climate change by 2030.

Gutteres: “This was not a promise made to one another as diplomats from the comfort of this chamber. It was always a promise to people.”

U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres told the summit of leaders that only 15% of the targets are on track and that many are going in reverse.

“People crushed under the grinding wheels of poverty. People starving in a world of plenty …People losing hope because they can't find a job or a safety net when they need it. Entire communities are literally on devastation’s doorsteps because of changing climate."

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez: "This issue is the biggest issue of our time and because of that we must be too big and too radical to ignore."

Democratic U.S. Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez joined tens of thousands of protesters on Sunday to kick off "Climate Week," filling the streets of midtown Manhattan ahead of the U.N. General Assembly and calling for President Joe Biden and other world leaders to end the use of fossil fuel.

"We will not give up, we will not let go. We will not allow cynicism to prevail.”

Earlier this month, Guterres called on G20 leaders to ensure a stimulus of at least $500 billion per year towards meeting SDG goals.

According to a report last year, the cost of meeting global targets rose 25% to $176 trillion during the year that ended in September 2022, with performance on several measures reversing.