UNITED NATIONS – President Obama’s speech to the opening session of the United Nations’ 70th General Assembly on Monday drew considerable attention, but most Americans likely were unaware of a speech he gave the previous day to the same world body in which he affirmed America’s commitment to a controversial, utopian plan to “transform” the world.
As many focused on week three of the National Football League season Sunday, Obama spoke with little fanfare to the closing session of the United Nations Sustainable Development Summit that was convened Sept. 25-27 as a high-level plenary meeting of the General Assembly.
The U.S. and the 192 other U.N. members unanimously adopted the “2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development,” a plan to “end poverty, fight inequality and injustice, and tackle climate change by 2030.”
It’s a plan some critics call a “blueprint for global governance.” As WND reported, Agenda 2030 is seen as a “reboot” of the controversial Agenda 21 plan, adopted in 1992, which the U.N. has described as a “comprehensive plan of action to be taken globally, nationally and locally by organizations of the United Nations system, governments and major groups, in every area in which human impacts on the environment.”
“And so, today, we commit ourselves to new Sustainable Development Goals, including our goal of ending extreme poverty in our world,” Obama told the U.N. meeting Sunday, committing the United States to Agenda 2030. “We do so understanding how difficult the task may be. We suffer no illusions of the challenges ahead. But we understand this is something that we must commit ourselves to.”
Also receiving little attention was the fact that when Pope Francis spoke to the United Nations on Friday, his speech served as the opening address to the 2030 Agenda summit.
In introducing the pope, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon said, “Your visit today coincides with the adoption of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.”
Ban referenced the papal encyclical on climate change, “Laudato Si,” translated as “Praise Be To You,” a Medieval Italian phrase taken from St. Francis of Assisi’s 13th century poem prayer “Canticle of the Creatures,” written to praise God as the creator of all.
“This message of [‘Laudato Si’] is critical as we approach the pivotal climate change conference in Paris in December,” Ban continued. “Across the global agenda, His Holiness is a resounding voice of conscience. He has cried out for compassion for the world’s refugees and migrants, and solidarity with people trapped in conflict and poverty.”
What is Agenda 2030?
The U.N. Agenda 2030 is derived from the global body’s previous Agenda 21, which introduced the idea of “sustainable development” in the context of environmental issues. It was adopted at the United Nation Conference on Environment and Development, known widely as the “Earth Summit,” held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in 1992.
The new U.N. global framework, presented under the title “Transforming Our World: The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development,” broadly expands Agenda 21 into 17 goals and 169 targets.
It’s lofty aims, among others, are to wipe out poverty among and between nations, end hunger, fight global economic inequality, achieve gender equality and curb climate change.
A United Nations statement at the end of the Agenda 2030 plenary session on Sunday called it a “bold new global agenda to end poverty by 2030 and pursue a sustainable future.”
The historic adoption of Agenda 2030 “was met with a thunderous standing ovation,” U.N. statement noted.
“Ushering in a new era of national action and international cooperation, the new agenda commits every country to take an array of actions that would not only address the root causes of poverty, but would also increase economic growth and prosperity and meet people’s health, education and social needs, while protecting the environment,” the U.N. said.
See Obama’s “Agenda 2030 speech to U.N. on Sunday, Sept 27:
Pope Francis echoes Agenda 2030
In the first words publicly spoken during his recent visit to the United States, at the White House, Pope Francis chose the topic of climate change.
“Mr. President, I find it encouraging that you are proposing an initiative for reducing air pollution,” the pope said. “Accepting the urgency, it seems clear to me also that climate change is a problem which can no longer be left to our future generation.
“When it comes to the care of our common home, we are living at a critical moment of history,” the pope continued in his White House speech. “We still have time to make the change needed to bring about a sustainable and integral development, for we know that things can change.”
The pope’s remarks echo the language of Article 59 in the U.N. “Declaration” on Agenda 2030, which says, “We reaffirm that planet Earth and its ecosystems are our common home and that ‘Mother Earth’ is a common expression in a number of countries and regions.”
Francis’ encyclical “Laudato Si” is subtitled “On Care for Our Common Home,” with the phrase “common home” appearing 13 times throughout the text. The U.N. theme “sustainable development” is echoed 18 times in the encyclical.
“The common home of all men and women must continue to rise on the foundations of a right understanding of universal fraternity and respect for the sacredness of every human life, of every man and every woman, the poor, the elderly, children, the infirm, the unborn, the unemployed, the abandoned, those considered disposable because they are only considered as part of a statistic,” Francis told the U.N.General Assembly in his Sept. 25 address to the General Assembly.
Francis also evoked the theme of “sustainable development” three times in his U.N. speech.
“The dramatic reality this whole situation of exclusion and inequality, with its evident effects, has led me, in union with the entire Christian people and many others, to take stock of my grave responsibility in this regard and to speak out, together with all those who are seeking urgently-needed and effective solutions,” the pope told the General Assembly.
“The adoption of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development at the World Summit, which opens today, is an important sign of hope. I am similarly confident that the Paris Conference on Climatic Change will secure fundamental and effective agreements,” Francis said.