On November 29th, the Hawai’i Green Growth network formally accepted the United Nations’ invitation to become one of the first Local2030 sustainability hubs worldwide. The designation as a UN Local2030 hub recognizes collective achievements by Hawai‘i public and private sector partners through the Aloha+ Challenge, a local framework to achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). In collaboration with the Global Island Partnership, Hawai‘i serves as the first UN hub in the Pacific to uplift island-led solutions to global challenges across economic, social, and environmental sectors with other islands, US cities, and subnational regions of major economies
Hawai’i Green Growth partners spoke on the importance of local action and the significance of the hub, collectively signing the Local2030 commitment document throughout the night. Celeste Connors, Executive Director of Hawai’i Green Growth, said “action at the local level is key to achieving the global Sustainable Development Goals. Hawaii’s efforts and collaboration by public and private sector partners is being recognized by the international community as a model. Together with the United Nations, Hawai‘i can implement and scale solutions and an island worldview that can have a major impact regionally and globally.”
Hawai‘i Green Growth partners signed the United Nations Local2030 Commitment Statement to formally launch Hawai‘i’s UN sustainability hub at Washington Place on November 29th with Governor Ige, state and county leadership, Global Island Partnership, and UN officials. State and House sponsors of the Aloha+ Challenge resolution provided video remarks. Governor David Ige stated: “As an isolated land mass, Hawai’i has long understood the challenges of finite resources and developed a culture of sustainability. We gladly accept this United Nations recognition as a UN Local2030 Hub. Hawai’i will rise to the challenge of leadership, pointing the way for other island entities to create local and culturally appropriate responses to sustainability challenges.” Governor Ige’s Sustainable Hawaii Initiative launched at the 2016 IUCN World Conservation Congress is part of the statewide effort by public and private partners to achieve the Aloha+ Challenge goals.
Kamehameha Schools, one of Hawai’i Green Growth’s founding partners, committed to providing a facility and classroom space to host the Hub, building on the Memorandum of Understanding among Kamehameha Schools, University of Hawai’i and Hawaii Green Growth to support the Aloha+ Challenge on sustainability, educational policy, and leadership pathways. The space will create a place for statewide public and private partners to convene and accelerate local solutions to global challenges.
“By working together, we create an amazing portal between Hawai‘i and the rest of the world — a hub where we can all gather to share ike (knowledge), advance our people, and find solutions that plague our island Earth,” said Kamehameha Schools CEO Jack Wong. “It also serves as a testament for our keiki as they see their indigenous ike, traditions of exploration, and Hawaiian culture have not been lost and are needed now more than ever to save our homes and planet.”
“Hawai‘i becomes this hub for global sustainability solutions where indigenous knowledge tested over a thousand years is multiplied against the power of science and technology. Through this, we can share one of Hawai‘i’s greatest assets, which is that our culture is still kind. The sail plan for the hub in Hawai‘i has already been mapped out by the Aloha+ Challenge. It is the sail plan that leads us to better leadership decisions, better policies, and is a way for all of us to be part of something special and work together to meet the challenges we face.” Nainoa Thompson stated in a video message marking the launch of HGG UN Local2030 Sustainability Hub.
“The UN Global Compact Cities Programme is honoured to be partnering with Hawaii Green Growth at a time when local level action is imperative to achieving the 2030 agenda for sustainable development and meeting the 1.5 degree climate change target,” said UN Global Compact Cities Programme Director Michael Nolan. “Through our collaboration with the UN- wide Local 2030 initiative, we will jointly share the experience, solutions and innovations from Hawaii and other Island nations to our vast network of businesses and cities in order to accelerate local level implementation of the SDGs.”