Let's Keep Moving Forward Together
Dec 20, 2021|13Climate Action
We have all learned different things this year. At home, at school, with friends and family. One year of growth, both academically and emotionally. But what have we learned from Climate Change?
Climate change affects everything at a local and global level. Climate change affects geopolitics, the economy, people's livelihood and jobs, people's wellbeing and access to education. It also affects animals, plants and our planet's overall health. And because of this, Climate Change is relevant to every person on the planet.
The 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals
Throughout the year, we have discovered each goal together. We have talked about how everything from small changes to big global strategies has to be considered to achieve climate neutrality and reverse environmental damages done by humans. But just as a quick reminder, The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), also known as the Global Goals, were proposed by the United Nations in 2015. Their goal is to serve as a collective call to action to end poverty, protect the planet, and ensure that by 2030 all people enjoy peace and prosperity.
The 17 goals are
Goal 1: No poverty
Goal 2: Zero hunger
Goal 3: Good health and wellbeing
Goal 4: Quality education
Goal 5: Gender equality
Goal 6: Clean water and sanitation
Goal 7: Affordable and clean energy
Goal 8: Decent work and economic growth
Goal 9: Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure
Goal 10: Reduced inequality
Goal 11: Sustainable cities and communities
Goal 12: Responsible consumption and production
Goal 13: Climate action
Goal 14: Life below water
Goal 15: Life on land
Goal 16: Peace, justice and strong institutions
Goal 17: Partnership for the goals
Some of these are very straightforward. However, it is important to remember that for each goal to be achieved, governments, organizations, citizens and in some cases, even children have to work together.
So we could say learning number one this year of sustainable development goals is: Together we are stronger.
Head over to our blog page and use the search bar to learn more about each SDG in more detail.
COP 26 - Steps in the Right Direction
Some say, slowly but surely wins the race. And the truth is that when it comes to sustainability, any win is a step forward. For example, this year, the COP26 conference took place in Glasgow, UK. The conference brings together leaders from all over the world to a "Conference of the Parties" in search of tangible long-term and short-term solutions to each UN Sustainable Development Goal. It creates unions and sometimes divisions but certainly stirs some governments in the right direction. COP26 creates accountability. It makes governments take action for their citizens and for the world.
This brings us to our second learning: Accountability is needed for progress. Accountability means that sometimes mistakes will happen. However, it is our responsibility to make amends and look for ways to improve.
Covid came to change everyone's lives. The way we socialize at work and the school changed dramatically. We even had to adapt to learn classes delivered online. It has been a challenging year for many, but we have also seen progress.
Scientists around the world work day and night together to develop vaccines in record time. We discovered we could work from anywhere and not only from an office. We discovered how hard it can be to apart. Still, we also learned how to appreciate being around our friends and family. We have adapted because that is what we do.
This brings us to our third learning: Humans learn and adapt even under the most challenging conditions.
Sadly COVID-19 has hurt development. Many of the proposed UN goals are not met yet and will take longer to achieve. As a result, poverty levels have increased, and access to health services is still a challenge in some countries. But it is a work in progress. As we continue to work together, learn, grow, and implement technologies of scale, we will be able to recuperate from Covid and its wave of devastation. In addition, climate finance provided by developed to developing countries has increased, reflecting an ongoing commitment to support the global transition to a low-emission and climate-resilient future.
To learn how COVID-19 has affected sustainable development, we invite you to visit the SDG Indicators website and download the 2021 report.
Cop26 also brought some results, such as:
Glasgow Leaders' Declaration on Forests and Land Use – a pledge to end and reverse deforestation by 2030, signed by over 100 countries, including Brazil and Indonesia.
Global Methane Pledge to reduce methane emissions by 30% by 2030 was signed by over 90 countries. China, India and Russia did not sign
The US and China have released a rare joint statement committing to cooperate in their efforts to maintain within 1.5ºC warming.
India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the country's intention to become net-zero by 2070.
Last but not least, we launched the 11th edition of our Drawing Contest. You took part and learned all about the UN Sustainable Development Goals. We grew a community together, and you submitted some fantastic art pieces. We wanted to take action from what we explored and learned for the past ten years; We took the first steps towards giant leaps to achieve a sustainable planet. But there's still so much more to do. So, let's Keep Moving Forward Together.