TWENTY-NINTH LEGISLATURE, 2018
STATE OF HAWAII
A BILL FOR AN ACT
RELATING TO SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT GOALS.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:
SECTION 1. The legislature finds, as declared in the World Conservation Congress Hawai‘i Commitments of 2016, that "[w]e must undertake profound transformations in how human societies live on Earth, with particular attention to making our patterns of production and consumption more sustainable. We must recognize that human health and wellbeing depend on healthy ecosystems. We must recognize that every form of life has value – regardless of its worth to humans." Hawaii has been a leader in conservation efforts for decades, through its commitment to environmental and sustainability policies. In the 1970s, the State enacted the State Environmental Policy, chapter 344, Hawaii Revised Statutes, as a mechanism to set environmental goals. While comprehensive, it lacked measurable indicators and enforcement means. Our understanding of the challenges facing our natural environment worldwide has changed remarkably since the 1970s. The laws enacted in Hawaii in recent decades have served as an example for other jurisdictions and set a global example on how to adopt policies on sustainability. More recently, several approaches to sustainability have emerged in Hawaii, including the Aloha+ Challenge, the governor's sustainable Hawaii initiative, and other initiatives inspired by the Mālama Honua Worldwide Voyage and Mālama Hawaii.
In July of 2014, the State launched the Aloha+ Challenge, a statewide commitment to sustainability, with the leadership of the governor, four county mayors, office of Hawaiian affairs, legislature, and Hawai‘i Green Growth public-private partners across the State. The Aloha+ Challenge: He Nohona ‘Ae‘oia, A Culture of Sustainability, builds on Hawaii's history of systems thinking, Hawaiian culture and values, and successful track record on sustainability to outline the following six ambitious goals to be achieved by 2030:
(1) Clean energy: Achieve seventy per cent clean energy, with forty per cent from renewables and thirty per cent from efficiency;
(2) Local food: At least double local food production for local consumption;
(3) Natural resource management: Reverse the trend of natural resource loss mauka to makai by increasing freshwater security, watershed protection, community-based marine management, invasive species control, and restoration of native species;
(4) Waste reduction: Reduce the solid waste stream prior to disposal by seventy per cent through source reduction, recycling, bioconversion, and landfill diversion methods;
(5) Smart sustainable communities: Increase livability and resilience in the built environment through planning and implementation at the state and county levels; and
(6) Green workforce and education: Increase local green jobs and education to implement these goals.
To increase the efforts of the Aloha+ Challenge, the governor launched the sustainable Hawaii initiative in 2016, which includes five goals:
(1) Double local food production by 2020;
(2) Implement Hawaii's interagency biosecurity plan by 2027;
(3) Protect thirty per cent of the highest priority watersheds by 2030;
(4) Manage thirty per cent of nearshore ocean waters by 2030; and
(5) Achieve one hundred per cent renewable energy in electricity by 2045.
In May of 2014, Hōkūle‘a began a three-year voyage across the world's oceans carrying the message of Mālama Honua – to care for the earth. Building on the legacy of the Polynesian wayfinders, the Hōkūle‘a Worldwide Voyage inspired actions of conservation across the Hawaiian Islands and beyond, resulting in the connection of a lei of aloha around the globe.
At the global level, the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, the World Conservation Congress Hawai‘i Commitments of 2016, and the Paris Climate Agreement have been adopted to guide global efforts. The sustainable development goals, otherwise known as the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which were born at the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development in Rio de Janeiro in 2012 and came into force in 2015, are a universal call to action to end poverty, protect the planet, and ensure that all people enjoy peace and prosperity. The seventeen sustainable development goals are interconnected and work in the spirit of partnership and pragmatism to make the right choices now to improve life in a sustainable way for future generations. They provide a clear framework for action to guide countries in accordance with their own priorities and the environmental challenges of the world at large. They also tackle the root causes of poverty and unite us together to make a positive change for both people and the planet.
Dealing with the threat of climate change impacts how we manage our fragile natural resources, achieving gender equality and better health helps eradicate poverty, and fostering peaceful and inclusive societies will reduce inequalities and help economies prosper. The sustainable development goals are voluntary commitments to make the world a better and more prosperous place.
During September 2016, over ten thousand leaders from government, civil society, indigenous communities, faith and spiritual traditions, the private sector, and academia gathered in Hawaii for a meeting of the International Union for Conservation of Nature World Conservation Congress. Delegates to the Congress adopted the World Conservation Congress Hawai‘i Commitments in order to achieve the transformation required to promote a "Culture of Conservation". The World Conservation Congress Hawai‘i Commitments consist of seven identified challenges and proposed solutions, including:
(1) Linking spirituality, religion, culture, and conservation;
(2) Engaging and empowering youth;
(3) The challenge of sustaining the global food supply and conserving nature;
(4) The challenge of preserving the health of the world oceans;
(5) The challenge of ending wildlife trafficking;
(6) The challenge of engaging with the private sector; and
(7) The challenge of climate change.
The World Conservation Congress Hawai‘i Commitments build on the Paris Climate Agreement and the sustainable development goals to allow different global voices to come together and find common ground in the spirit of partnership, collaboration, and sustainability.
In order for Hawaii to continue to serve as an example for the rest of the world in setting policies on sustainability and to serve as a global leader on issues of conservation and sustainability, it is essential that the State demonstrate its full commitment to its own policies and goals as well as the goals set on the international stage at United Nations conferences and summits on sustainability.
Therefore, the purpose of this Act is to codify the State's commitment to conservation and sustainability by including goal thirteen of the seventeen United Nations sustainable development goals and indicators, climate action, with references to existing state sustainability programs, if applicable, in the Hawaii Revised Statutes.
SECTION 2. Chapter 344, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by adding a new section to be appropriately designated and to read as follows:
"§344- Sustainable development goals; climate action. In pursuance of the State's sustainability goals, notwithstanding any law to the contrary, all agencies, insofar as practicable, shall assist the State in achieving the sustainable development goal of taking urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts by 2030 by:
(1) Strengthening resilience and adaptive capacity to climate-related hazards and natural disasters statewide in line with the Paris Climate Agreement and the World Conservation Congress Hawai‘i Commitments of 2016;
(2) Integrating climate change measures into state policies, strategies, and planning; and
(3) Improving education, awareness-raising, and human and institutional capacity on climate change mitigation, adaptation, impact reduction, and early warning, pursuant to the goals of the Aloha+ Challenge."
SECTION 3. New statutory material is underscored.
SECTION 4. This Act shall take effect on January 28, 2045.
Sustainable Development Goals; Goal 13; Climate Action
Codifies Goal 13 of the United Nations' 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development to take urgent action to combat climate change and its impact. (SB2674 HD1)
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