Fukushima launching commendation system to promote SDGs

The Fukushima prefectural government is set to inaugurate a system to commend local organizations for their activities contributing to the promotion of the United Nations' Sustained Development Goals (SDGs), starting in fiscal 2022. The plan to launch the scheme was disclosed at a "Fukushima SDGs forum" held in the prefectural capital city of Fukushima on Feb. 17. Recognizing that efforts to achieve the SDGs help step up the development of Fukushima as envisaged by the prefecture's "overall program," the local government will offer regional communities opportunities to share good examples of activities via the commendation system. It hopes the new scheme will also work to enhance the local communities' capabilities to tackle varied problems and issues. The prefecture is considering setting up a framework, in which organizations and groups from various fields in Fukushima can take part and work together, in the new fiscal year beginning on April 1. It will then evaluate the activities of participants based on expert opinions and advice to present the honor, hoping that those honored will develop their activities further. By publicizing initiatives related to the SDGs among prefectural people through the commendation system, the prefectural government aims to forge understanding of such initiatives and broaden the scope of relevant activities as well. Details of the system have yet to be fixed. (Translated by Kyodo News)