Millennium Development Goal 7


Target 7.A:
Integrate the principles of sustainable development into country policies and programmes and reverse the loss of environmental resources

  • Forests are a safety net for the poor, but they continue to disappear at an alarming rate.
  • Of all developing regions, South America and Africa saw the largest net losses of forest areas between 2000 and 2010.
  • Global emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) have increased by more than 46 per cent since 1990.
  • In the 25 years since the adoption of the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer, there has been a reduction of over 98 per cent in the consumption of ozone-depleting substances.
  • At Rio+20, the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, world leaders approved an agreement entitled “The Future We Want,” and more than $513 billion was pledged towards sustainable development initiatives.

Target 7.B:
Reduce biodiversity loss, achieving, by 2010, a significant reduction in the rate of loss

  • More areas of the earth’s surface are protected. Since 1990, protected areas have increased in number by 58 per cent.
  • Growth in protected areas varies across countries and territories and not all protected areas cover key biodiversity sites.
  • By 2010, protected areas covered 12.7 per cent of the world’s land area but only 1.6 per cent of total ocean area.

Target 7.C:
Halve, by 2015, the proportion of the population without sustainable access to safe drinking water and basic sanitation

  • The world has met the target of halving the proportion of people without access to improved sources of water, five years ahead of schedule.
  • Between 1990 and 2010, more than two billion people gained access to improved drinking water sources.
  • The proportion of people using an improved water source rose from 76 per cent in 1990 to 89 per cent in 2010.
  • Over 40 per cent of all people without improved drinking water live in sub-Saharan Africa.
  • In 2011, 768 million people remained without access to an improved source of drinking water.
  • Over 240,000 people a day gained access to improved sanitation facilities from 1990 to 2011.
  • Despite progress, 2.5 billion in developing countries still lack access to improved sanitation facilities.

Target 7.D:
Achieve, by 2020, a significant improvement in the lives of at least 100 million slum dwellers

  • The target was met well in advance of the 2020 deadline.
  • The share of urban slum residents in the developing world declined from 39 per cent in 2000 to 33 per cent in 2012. More than 200 million of these people gained access to improved water sources, improved sanitation facilities, or durable or less crowded housing, thereby exceeding the MDG target
  • 863 million people are estimated to be living in slums in 2012 compared to 650 million in 1990 and 760 million in 2000


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