Ambassador Lisa Carty
U.S. Representative to the Economic and Social Council of the UN
New York, New York
October 4, 2022
Thank you, Madame Chair. The United States is grateful for your leadership. We also thank the Vice Chairs and the Secretariat for their hard work and collaborative spirit. You have our full support.
As the Second Committee begins its work, we are keenly aware of the urgent crises and vulnerabilities we face as a global community. While our solidarity has strengthened through our work together to blunt the worst impacts of COVID-19, rising geopolitical tension, growing food insecurity, and the ongoing consequences of Russia’s illegal and unprovoked war in Ukraine have made achieving our collective goals all the more difficult.
Russia’s violation of the UN Charter has thrown our world into chaos, put our fragile development gains at risk, and threatened the foundations of international order that we have worked together to protect. The Secretary has unequivocally reaffirmed that Moscow’s decision to continue on this path will further jeopardize prospects for peace, “prolong the dramatic impacts on the global economy, especially in developing countries, and hinder our ability to deliver life-saving aid.”
As we come together to address these interlinked and cascading crises, let us remember this institution, the United Nations is an act of hope, making this body more consequential than ever. In that spirit, the United States has been working tirelessly both domestically and with our friends around the world to lift up Agenda 2030.
The Sustainable Development Goals align with the United States’ national and global aspirations to expand economic growth, social justice, environmental stewardship, and good governance, while ensuring no one is left behind. We reaffirm our full support for the 2030 Agenda and remain committed to the principle that truly sustainable economic growth, social well-being, and environmental protections cannot come at the expense of human rights. We look forward to supporting the Committee’s critical contributions to achieving all 17 Sustainable Development Goals.
Echoing a central premise of the 2030 Agenda, President Biden noted in his remarks to the General Assembly that “the future will be won by those countries that unleash the full potential of their populations.” The United States firmly believes that inclusive economic growth is the catalyst for a future where everyone can reach their full potential, and where women and girls, persons with disabilities, LGBTQI+ individuals, indigenous peoples, and other marginalized groups can fully participate in building stronger economies and more resilient societies.
In our commitment to this vision, the United States is proud to be the largest provider of Official Development Assistance (ODA). In 2021, we contributed $42 billion to sustain development progress and respond to the unprecedented circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic.
We recognize ODA alone cannot achieve our ambitious goals. Domestic resource mobilization and private sector investment are critical for achieving sustainable economic development. In this regard, we are committed to helping incentivize partnerships with the private sector — partnerships that can catalyze investments in energy, health, infrastructure, and technology.
Before the pandemic, the world was making steady progress across multiple health indicators, including in reproductive health, infectious disease prevention, and maternal and child health. For decades and with billions invested, the U.S. has worked to strengthen health systems, deliver vaccines, and prevent and treat infectious disease. Millions of lives have been saved.
The United States is proud to be a leader in the global COVID-19 response. We have contributed $5.1 billion, and we have delivered more than 623 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines to 116 countries. And we are looking at how we can fill remaining gaps in the pandemic response and better prevent, prepare for, and respond to future health threats.
Food security is fundamental for healthy and prosperous communities. For this reason, the United States has, for decades, invested in food systems to build greater resiliency and sustainability. We are helping farmers boost their harvests and income, and we’re expanding access to inclusive food systems, providing people with safe, nutritious food, and helping the most vulnerable households withstand food shocks. On September 21, President Biden announced over $2.9 billion in additional aid for lifesaving food security assistance, putting the United States on track to provide more than $10.5 billion in total assistance this year alone.
Our work to address urgent food needs demands a simultaneous commitment to climate change. As we’ve seen recently in the headlines, from Florida to Pakistan, climate change is wreaking havoc with our environment, with the world’s most vulnerable often bearing the heaviest burden. We call on all nations to bring their commitments and actions in line with the Paris goal of limiting warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius. We are working with countries around the world to set and achieve more ambitious climate goals.
That is why the United States launched the President’s Emergency Plan for Adaptation and Resilience — to help more than half a billion people in developing countries adapt to and manage the impacts of climate change through locally led development. We also are working with our Congress to deliver more than $11 billion a year in international climate finance to help lower-income countries.
Colleagues, at this critical moment, consensus should be our focus — we should demonstrate to the world a shared acknowledgement of the challenges before us and commit to addressing them together. For our part, the United States will work with the committee to ensure our work is disciplined, prioritized, and laser-focused on addressing the urgent needs of our most vulnerable populations.
Madam Chair, colleagues, the United States looks forward to working with you, the Bureau, the Secretariat, and all delegations to achieve consensus on the outcomes we can only reach together. We look forward to our work in the weeks ahead.