• The G20 Green Garden in Rome celebrates sustainability and biodiversity.
  • And it’s accessible via an app, for those who can’t make it in person.
  • Green spaces and technologies help to improve the health and well-being of people living in urban areas.
  • Healthcare, climate and food security challenges are key themes to be explored during the World Economic Forum’s Sustainable Development Impact Summit 2021.

Italy is inviting the world to visit an urban garden in the heart of its capital.

No need to book a flight, though – you can tour it from your smartphone or computer.

The G20 Green Garden in Rome is part of Italy’s presidency of the ‘G20’ – the forum of the world’s biggest economies – and celebrates sustainability and biodiversity.

Its features include a sacred wood, fruit orchard and a ‘cube meadow’ – an open-air installation of the United Nations’ 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Maurizio Martina,Deputy Director-General FAO, leaves a special message on the symbolic
Maurizio Martina, Deputy Director-General FAO, leaves a special message.
Image: ©FAO/Alessandra Benedetti

The SDGs – also known as the Global Goals – were adopted by the UN’s 193 member states in 2015 and include ending poverty, inequality and hunger, creating sustainable cities and combatting climate change by 2030.

Sustainable Rome

The G20 Green Garden is in Rome’s Appia Antica Park – a protected urban area that is home to many archaeological remains of ancient Rome.

For those who can’t tour the garden in person, the G20 Green Garden app allows for virtual visits; and either way, visitors are invited to “reflect on the future of the planet”.

New trees will be planted in the wood this October to symbolize the G20’s commitment to sustainability.

And opposite the garden’s Church of Saint Urban, which was originally a Roman temple, an “iconic tree” will be planted to symbolize the “values and objectives which must unite the international community and countries, commencing with the protection of biodiversity”.

Green spaces

Rome’s G20 Green Garden project links with the UN’s Decade of Ecosystem Restoration, which aims to halt and reverse environmental degradation and biodiversity loss, as well as the Green Cities Initiative, run by the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization.

The latter focuses on using green spaces and technologies to improve the health and well-being of people living in urban areas.

Towards a sustainable future

Healthcare, climate and food security challenges are key themes to be explored during the World Economic Forum’s Sustainable Development Impact Summit 2021.

Over four days from 20-23 September, the meeting will bring together leaders across sectors to accelerate progress towards the UN SDGs in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

What is the World Economic Forum’s Sustainable Development Impact summit?

It’s an annual meeting featuring top examples of public-private cooperation and Fourth Industrial Revolution technologies being used to develop the sustainable development agenda.

It runs alongside the United Nations General Assembly, which this year features a one-day climate summit. This is timely given rising public fears – and citizen action – over weather conditions, pollution, ocean health and dwindling wildlife. It also reflects the understanding of the growing business case for action.

The UN’s Strategic Development Goals and the Paris Agreement provide the architecture for resolving many of these challenges. But to achieve this, we need to change the patterns of production, operation and consumption.

The World Economic Forum’s work is key, with the summit offering the opportunity to debate, discuss and engage on these issues at a global policy level.

The event is being hosted virtually alongside the United Nations General Assembly and will feature working sessions, roundtables, dialogues and briefings on revitalizing economies, advancing an inclusive recovery, scaling up climate action and shaping future food systems.