Hijab Fatima, Green Bloggers

“Sustainability Is Here To Stay, Or We May Not Be.” - Niall FitzGerald.

The Earth's climate has been changed throughout the history. Just within the last 650,000 years there are seven cycles of glacial advance and retreat, with the sudden end of the last ice age. About 11,700 years ago marking the beginning of the climate and of human civilization of this era. Global climate change has been already resulted in a very wide range of effects across every region of the country and many sectors of the economy that are expected to grow in the coming years. These effects of climate change extend beyond an increase in the temperature, impact on ecosystems and communities around the world.

Since we can’t stop the climate change, Sustainable development (SD) has become a useful catchphrase in contemporary development discourse as a helpful and important step to conserving this planet. Sustainable development (SD) is the idea that our societies must live and fulfill their needs without compromising the ability of future generations and to meet their own needs. The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, given by United Nations Member States in 2015, it provides a shared plan for peace and prosperity for people and planet, now and into the future. This agenda consists of 17 Sustainable Development Goals which is abbreviated as SDGs, it is an urgent call for action by all countries - developed and developing - in a worldwide partnership. These SDGs are built on many years of hard work by countries and the UN, including the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs.

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are:

Goal 1. No Poverty

Over 700 million people or 10% of the world population is still live in extreme poverty today, struggling to fulfil the most basic needs. Sustainable development goal is to reduce hunger.

Goal 2. Zero Hunger

With more than a quarter of a billion people potentially are at starvation. Increasing agricultural productivity and sustainable food production can help to reduce hunger.

Goal 3: Good health and well-being

Good health is mandatory to sustainable development. Reducing rapid urbanization, threats to the climate and the environment can help.

Goal 4: Quality education

Since 2000, there has been enormous success in progress in universal primary education. The total enrolment rate in developing regions reached 91% in 2015. There has also been notable increase in literacy rates.

Goal 5: Gender equality

Ending all gender discrimination against women and girls is not only a basic human right, it’s important for sustainable future. UNDP has made gender equality central to its work and there is remarkable progress in the past 20 years.

Goal 6: Clean water and sanitation

Protecting and restoring water ecosystems is essential. Ensuring globally safe and affordable drinking water involves reaching over 800 million people who do not have basic services and improving accessibility.

Goal 7: Affordable and clean energy

Between 2000 and 2016, the number of people with electricity increased from 78 to 87% and the numbers without electricity dipped to just below one billion. Investing in solar, wind and thermal power, can improving energy productivity.

Goal 8: Decent work and economic growth.

Over the past 25 years the number of workers living in poverty has reduced dramatically, despite the long lasting impact of the 2008 economic crisis. 17 SDGs agenda will encourage growth and help the environment. 

Goal 9: Industry, innovation and infrastructure

Technological progress is main key to finding long lasting solutions to both economic and environmental challenges. Promoting sustainable industries and investing in scientific research are important ways to facilitate sustainable development.

Goal 10: Reduced inequalities

Income inequality is on the rise. The richest 10% have up to 40% of global income whereas the poorest 10% earn only between 2 to 7%. Income inequality requires global solutions and SDG will help in it.

Goal 11: Sustainable cities and communities

By 2050, two-thirds of all humanity 6.5 billion people will move to cities. The sudden growth of it has led to an increase in mega-cities especially in the developing world. Making cities sustainable is creating career and business opportunities.

Goal 12: Responsible consumption and production

There is no balance in resources we produce and consume. Having the per capita of global food wastage at the retailer and consumer levels is very important for creating more efficient production.

Goal 13: Climate action

There is no country that is not experienced the drastic change in climate change. Now Greenhouse gas emissions are more than 50% higher than in 1990. Actions must also go hand in hand with efforts to disaster risk management.

Goal 14: Life Below Water

Over 3 billion people depend on water ecosystem and coastal biodiversity for their livelihoods. Increasing conservation and the sustainable use of ocean-based resources through international law will help combating challenges.

Goal 15: Life on land

15 percent of land biodiversity is still at risk. Nearly 7,000 species of animals and plants have been illegally killed or traded. Urgent action must be taken to minimize the loss of natural habitats and biodiversity.

Goal 16: Peace, justice and strong institutions

Sustainable development without peace, stability, human rights and effective governance, based on the rule of law is nothing. The SDGs aim to significantly minimize all forms of violence, and work with governments and communities.

Goal 17: Partnerships for the goals

The SDGs can only be achieved with strong global partnerships. Promoting international trade, and help in developing countries to increase their exports is part of achieving.

Pakistan shows its commitment to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development by adopting the (SDGs) through its own national development agenda through a collective National Assembly Resolution in 2016. In 2018, the newly elected Government designed and approved a National SDGs Framework that envisages a national vision to localize SDGs.  

Along all plus points, 17 SDGs have some cross-cutting issues i.e Women and gender equality, Education and sustainable development, Gender education, Technology and SDG-driven investment but if we see overall, these SDGs help a lot in sustaining the global development.


About the Author: Hijab Fatima is a research student at LCWU, Lahore. She loves nature and animals so have done different projects, courses and many voluntary work for environment and nature conservation.