Latvia country profile – SDGs and the environment

Latvia country profile - SDGs and the environment

With regard to an innovative and eco-efficient economy, it aims to preserve biological diversity, together with the services of ecosystems and renewable energy resources (SDG 7) used in innovative ways. As regards nature as its future capital, Latvia prioritizes the use of location as capital, together with creating its image as a green country (Cross-Sectoral Coordination Centre – CSCC, 2018).

Latvia’s action towards SDGs with an environmental dimension focuses primarily on SDGs 7, 8, 9, 14, and 15.

In Latvia, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Consultative Council for Cooperation on Development are responsible for sustainable development cooperation and planning. Regular Council meetings constitute the main platform for the implementation of the 2030 Agenda (CSCC, 2018). The CSCC is the primary body for development planning in Latvia and the focal point for the SDGs. It is overseen by the prime minister (CSCC, 2018) and includes representatives from all line ministries, the Latvian Platform for Development Cooperation (LAPAS), the Latvian Association of Local and Regional Governments, the Latvian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Employers’ Confederation of Latvia, the Latvian Rectors’ Council, the European Affairs Committee of the Latvian Parliament, the State Chancellery, and the Latvian School of Public Administration. There are plans to strengthen the Council, expand its membership, and establish new working groups, as appropriate.

The CSCC created an informal advisory working group for the SDGs, comprising representatives from relevant line ministries, local governments, civil society associations, international partners, and other relevant stakeholders. In Latvia, planning and policy are decentralized, which means that local authorities are critical to SDG actions. All local governments in Latvia have adopted sustainable development strategies that identify key issues, goals, and plans. Many efforts at the local level are organized by the Latvian Association of Local and Regional Governments. The largest NGO umbrella organization in Latvia is Alliance-Latvia, which brings together organizations working on implementing the SDGs (CSCC, 2018).