The United Nations Millenium Development goals have been part of important changes over the last 12 years. Governments, the United Nations
family, the private sector and civil society have succeeded in saving many lives and improving conditions in the developing world. If the economies in the developing countries (China, Indonesia, India, Vietnam, African countries, South American countries) can continue and the gains against poverty, dirty water, public health, education and slum cities can continue then 30 million unnecessary deaths every year could be avoided. There must also be more gains against air pollution and traffic deaths.
Brookings Institute analysis of poverty has better numbers than the World Bank. Brookings institute indicated the 2015 the extreme poverty should be down to 10% or less of the world’s population. Down from 47 per cent in 1990 and 24 percent in 2008. It seems that a goal of getting extreme poverty down below 5% is easily possible for 2025. This would leave about 350 million people living with less than $1.25/day mainly in Africa. Nigeria is actually doing pretty well economically and is expected to account for 90-100 million of the extremely poor in 2015. If Nigeria continues to do well then they could make a lot of progress against poverty by 2020. A reachable positive scenario is to have less than 200 million living with less than $1.25/day. An extreme poverty rate of 2.5%.
Illiteracy a big problem for rapid progress against $2/day poverty
It is also conceivable to have less than 1 billion living on less than $2/day in 2020. However, this is a tougher area to make a lot of progress. The reason being is that there are high levels of illiteracy in India and Africa. Someone who is 15 or over now and is illiterate will be 25 or older in 2020 and will be illiterate. India likely has 30-40% illiteracy. Some who are considered literate only have to be able to write their name. This is not true literacy.
Extreme poverty is falling in every region
For the first time since poverty trends began to be monitored, the number of people living in extreme poverty and poverty rates fell in every developing region—including in sub-Saharan Africa, where rates are highest. The proportion of people living on less than $1.25 a day fell from 47 per cent in 1990 to 24 per cent in 2008—a reduction from over 2 billion to less than 1.4 billion.
Global Middle class at $10/day PPP could double from 2 billion to 4 billion by 2025
Continue progress on Child survival
The number of under-five deaths worldwide fell from more than 12.0 million in 1990 to 7.6 million in 2010. The goal should be to bring this down below 1 million by 2025.
Big progress has been made against extreme poverty, dirty water, slums, disease, basic education, basic public health
The progress in these areas is detailed in the MGD document and highlighted in the rest of this article. This work needs to continue and great achievements are possible as has been seen with the success that have already been produced.
Halving the 1990 poverty are target was met
Preliminary estimates indicate that the global poverty rate at $1.25 a day fell in 2010 to less than half the 1990 rate. If these results are confirmed, the first target of the MDGs—cutting the extreme poverty rate to half its 1990 level—will have been achieved at the global level well ahead of 2015.
Clean Water Target was met
The world has met the target of halving the proportion of people without access to improved sources of water. The target of halving the proportion of people without sustainable access to safe drinking water was also met by 2010, with the proportion of people using an improved water source rising from 76 per cent in 1990 to 89 per cent in 2010. Between 1990 and 2010, over two billion people gained access to improved drinking water sources, such as piped supplies and protected wells.
Improvements in the lives of 200 million slum dwellers exceeded the slum target
The share of urban residents in the developing world living in slums declined from 39 per cent in 2000 to 33 per cent in 2012. More than 200 million gained access to either improved water sources, improved sanitation facilities, or durable or less crowded housing. This achievement exceeds the target of significantly improving the lives of at least 100 million slum dwellers, well ahead of the 2020 deadline
The world has achieved parity in primary education between girls and boys
Driven by national and international efforts and the MDG campaign, many more of the world’s children are enrolled in school at the primary level, especially since 2000. The ratio between the enrollment rate of girls and that of boys grew from 91 in 1999 to 97 in 2010 for all developing regions. The gender parity index value of 97 falls within the plus-or-minus 3-point margin of 100 per cent, the accepted measure for parity.
Many countries facing the greatest challenges have made significant progress towards universal primary education
Enrollment rates of children of primary school age increased markedly in sub-Saharan Africa, from 58 to 76 per cent between 1999 and 2010. Many countries in that region succeeded in reducing their relatively high out-of-school rates even as their primary school age populations were growing.
Child survival progress is gaining momentum
Despite population growth, the number of under-five deaths worldwide fell from more than 12.0 million in 1990 to 7.6 million in 2010. And progress in the developing world as a whole has accelerated. Sub-Saharan Africa—the region with the highest level of under-five mortality—has doubled its average rate of reduction, from 1.2 per cent a year over 1990-2000 to 2.4 per cent during 2000-2010.
Access to treatment for people living with HIV increased in all regions
At the end of 2010, 6.5 million people were receivingantiretroviral therapy for HIV or AIDS in developing regions. This total constitutes an increase of over 1.4 million people from December 2009, and the largest one-year increase ever. The 2010 target of universal access, however, was not reached.
The world is on track to achieve the target of halting and beginning to reverse the spread of tuberculosis
Globally, tuberculosis incidence rates have been falling since 2002, and current projections suggest that the 1990 death rate from the disease will be halved by 2015.
Global malaria deaths have declined
The estimated incidence of malaria has decreased globally, by 17 per cent since 2000. Over the same period, malaria-specific mortality rates have decreased by 25 per
cent. Reported malaria cases fell by more than 50 per cent between 2000 and 2010 in 43 of the 99 countries with ongoing malaria transmission.
Vulnerable employment has decreased only marginally over twenty years
Vulnerable employment—defined as the share of unpaid family workers and own-account workers in total employment—accounted for an estimated 58 per cent of all employment in developing regions in 2011, down only moderately from 67 per cent two decades earlier. Women and youth are more likely to find themselves in such insecure and poorly remunerated positions than the rest of the employed population.
• Decreases in maternal mortality are far from the 2015 target
There have been important improvements in maternal health and reduction in maternal deaths, but progress is still slow. Reductions in adolescent childbearing and expansion of contraceptive use have continued, but at a slower pace since 2000 than over the decade before.
• Use of improved sources of water remains lower in rural areas
While 19 per cent of the rural population used unimproved sources of water in 2010, the rate in urban areas was only 4 per cent. And since dimensions of safety, reliability and sustainability are not reflected in the proxy indicator used to track progress towards the MDG target, it is likely that these figures overestimate the actual number of people using safe water supplies. Worse, nearly half of the population in developing regions—2.5 billion—still lacks access to improved sanitation facilities. By 2015, the world will have reached only 67 per cent coverage, well short of the 75 per cent needed to achieve the MDG target.
• Hunger remains a global challenge
The most recent FAO estimates of undernourishment set the mark at 850 million living in hunger in the world in the 2006/2008 period—15.5 per cent of the world population. This continuing high level reflects the lack of progress on hunger in several regions, even as income poverty has decreased. Progress has also been slow in reducing child undernutrition. Close to one third of children in Southern Asia were underweight in 2010.
• The number of people living in slums continues to grow
Despite a reduction in the share of urban populations living in slums, the absolute number has continued to grow from a 1990 baseline of 650 million. An estimated 863 million people now live in slum conditions.
Brian Wang is a Futurist Thought Leader and a popular Science blogger with 1 million readers per month. His blog Nextbigfuture.com is ranked #1 Science News Blog. It covers many disruptive technology and trends including Space, Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, Medicine, Anti-aging Biotechnology, and Nanotechnology.
Known for identifying cutting edge technologies, he is currently a Co-Founder of a startup and fundraiser for high potential early-stage companies. He is the Head of Research for Allocations for deep technology investments and an Angel Investor at Space Angels.
A frequent speaker at corporations, he has been a TEDx speaker, a Singularity University speaker and guest at numerous interviews for radio and podcasts. He is open to public speaking and advising engagements.