The Sustainable Development Goals, otherwise known as the Global Goals or SDGs, is a term that is often spoken about in Sustainability. But what do they mean? What are they? What do they mean for my business? These are all questions that many people think about when they hear about the Goals.
That’s why we are introducing a new series on our blog called ‘Understanding The Sustainable Development Goals’. One by one, we will be going through each goal in detail to help you to understand what they mean for people and the planet. We will also share how your business can work to be more sustainable by looking at these Goals as a framework.
The SDGs, in short, is a global partnership. It is a partnership between all United Nations Member States that advocates for action by all countries in bringing peace to the planet and its people.
In 2015 the 17 Sustainable Development Goals were founded:
- No Poverty
- Zero Hunger
- Good Health and Wellbeing
- Quality Education
- Gender Equality
- Clean Water and Sanitation
- Affordable and Clean Energy
- Decent Work and Economic Growth
- Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure
- Reduced Inequality
- Sustainable Cities and Communities
- Responsible Consumption and Production
- Climate Action
- Life Below Water
- Life on Land
- Peace, Justice, and Strong Institutions
- Partnerships For The Goals
The SDGs recognise that helping people and the planet are not separate matters, but deeply interconnected. They realise that to to have good health and wellbeing we must also have gender equality and decent work opportunities. For a thriving planet all aspects must be worked on, for when the planet is suffering, so are people. The 17 Goals are a way of seeing how everything is interconnected, and that we will not have peace and prosperity until we have worked on all of these Goals.
A Better Future By 2030
Completing these Goals is the greatest global challenge we face but it is critical that we all take part in creating a better future. The Goals are to stimulate action by all in making the planet a fairer, healthier place that can thrive and prosper in all aspects.
The aim of these Goals have been put into the 5 P’s: People, Planet, Prosperity, Peace, and Partnership.
The Goals are about ensuring that all humans can live healthily, with dignity, and equally. That the planet is protected so that it can support the needs of the future. That all people can prosper and lead fulfilled lives. That societies can live free from fear. That we can work on the SDGs through strengthened global solidarity.
The SDGs are a sign of hope and a call for action, by all, to make the world a better place by 2030.
What Do The Goals Mean For My Business?
In a recent study it was found that over 88% of consumers believe that companies should try to achieve their business goals while also improving society and the environment. People want the companies they buy from to be active in helping the planet and its people. Bringing sustainability to your business is a great way to engage in more sales and make a better future by 2030. Not only this, it gives more to the consumer. It helps them to also support these Goals, to be aware of them, and feel the heightened sense of wellbeing through giving back.
Being sustainable in your business doesn’t just have to be about being plastic free or recycling (though these things do help and are really great if you are doing them). Being sustainable can be about having one or a few of the SDGs in mind and working towards them. It is difficult to try and work towards them all, but selecting and choosing a few that relate the most to your company, brand, or product is a good way to start.
There are many ways we can work towards certain Goals, and one that businesses can do is donating some of their revenue to charities or projects that align with their SDG focus. One project you could be a part of is the ‘One Percent For the People and Planet’. This is one way you can work towards an SDG but also help the consumer to be sustainable, too.
In our next blog we will be focusing on Goal 1: No Poverty, and discussing in more depth what this Goal means and what we can do to take action.
If you would like to read more about the Sustainable Development Goals then you can do so here. If you would like to speak to Mark for more information about what sustainability can do for your business, then you can contact him here.