UPSC Daily Editorial Analysis | 17 May 2022

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What the article is about?

  • Talks about India’s performance in SDG’s and case study of Odisha.

Syllabus: GS-III Issues relating growth and development, Sustainable Development, SDG’s

SDGs India Index:

  • NITI Aayog’s 2020-21 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) India Index detailed the implementation of the United Nations’ SDGs in the country, States and Union Territories (UTs).
    • It gave marks, between 0 and 100 points, to each region.
    • In a significant marker of improvement, no State fared in the ‘Aspirant’ category, the lowest in the index.
    • All the States managed to score above 50 points in SDG implementation, with 13 States featuring in the ‘Performer’ category and 15 in the ‘Front Runner’ category (the second-highest position).
    • There was improvement in the overall performance of the country towards SDG implementation.
    • India stepped into the ‘Front Runner’ category with a score of 66 points, though it dropped two ranks in the ordinal scale.
  • However, our neighbouring countries performed better than us.
    • India did well in implementing SDGs 6,7, 11 and 12, ‘clean water and sanitation’, ‘affordable and clean energy’, ‘sustainable cities and communities’, and ‘sustainable consumption and production’, respectively did not do well in many others. 

Way Ahead:

  • Even with a significant improvement in many goals, India continues to be in the ‘Aspirant’ category for the implementation of ‘gender equality’ and ‘zero hunger’.
    • Many others, such as ‘no poverty’, ‘quality education’, ‘decent work and economic growth’, ‘industry, innovation and infrastructure’, and ‘climate action’, need a lot more work so that the country can be pulled up to the ‘Front Runner’ category from the ‘Performer’ category.
  • The current level of collaboration with States, UTs, civil society organisations and businesses should be further enhanced by overlooking any differences in political ideologies.
    • There is a need to aggressively implement SDG localisation efforts at the district, panchayat and village levels so that implementation feedback from the field is available, besides enabling true internalisation of the SDGs by the community.
    • Only work at the community level can make SDGs truly achievable and deliverable. 

Case study- Odisha:

  • Odisha saw a three-point improvement in its overall score and settled at 61 points.
    • It topped in implementing two SDGs — 13(‘climate action’) and 14(‘life below water’).
  • Its disaster preparedness programme has been recognised multiple times by different UN agencies.
    • Odisha managed to save 120.07 tonnes of CO2 per 1,000 population, by using LED bulbs, against India’s 28.04 tonnes.
    • The State showed improved shore water quality and saw a 3.19% increase in the area under mangroves.
  • One of the most important is that is has prioritised budgetary allocation towards these sectors.
    • FY2021 Budget, introduced a Climate Budget, a first-ever feature. While highlighting the impact of climate change on various departments, the Budget presented a way of tracking public expenditure for a clean climate.
    • FY2022, submitted a separate SDG Budget,  indicating a significant development in its commitment towards implementing the SDGs. 

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