Six Transformations to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals

26/08/2019 - The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the Paris Agreement on Climate Change call for deep transformations that require complementary actions by governments, civil society, science, and business. While significant progress is being made on some goals, no country is currently on track towards achieving all SDGs. PIK Director Johan Rockström contributed to a paper published now in Nature Sustainability, outlining six major transformations that will be required to achieve these ambitious goals. Led by the United Nations Sustainable Development Network (UNSDSN), the research will be an input to the upcoming United Nations General Assembly Climate Summit on September 23 and 24 in New York City. Rockström will be a speaker at a number of events.
Six Transformations to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals
Change in six areas is necessary to enhance human prosperity and reduce inequalities. Photo: UNSDNS

"This is good news - by achieving change in six key areas, we can save both people and planet," says Rockström. "To deliver on both ambitious climate targets and meet all the Sustainable Development Goals, we identify very concrete levers that governments can pull. For instance, investing in agriculture with known technologies and management practices can enable both food security, human health and climate mitigation. Investing in young children's education is another example. It improves human wellbeing, increases economic development and stabilizes population growth."

"The six transformations in this paper have the ultimate goal of enhancing human prosperity and reduce inequalities", Rockström adds. "This is not easy of course. In fact it is the largest human endeavour of all time. And science is here to provide governments with a fact-based framework. If political leadership fails to act, however, we would face unprecedented risks for the stability of societies, and for our Earth system."

Article: Jeffrey D. Sachs, Guido Schmidt-Traub, Mariana Mazzucato, Dirk Messner,  Nebojsa Nakicenovic, Johan Rockström (2019): Six Transformations to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. Nature Sustainability [DOI 10.1038/s41893-019-0352-9]

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