What's the Problem?
Social and environmental ambitions
Over the past 50 years, the world has seen huge growth and, as a result, an unprecedented deterioration of the natural resources needed to fuel this growth. This has become known as The Great Acceleration as we have entered a new age, the Anthropocene.
It shouldn't be a surprise to learn that there are limits or Planetary Boundaries to this growth. At present, humans are using the equivalent of 1.6 planets to provide the resources necessary to produce goods and absorb waste. If we carry on like this, by the 2030s we will need the equivalent of 2 Earths to support human life. Something has to change!
These boundaries serve as an early-warning system, allowing us to act before a crisis level is reached. Business as usual is not an option - we need to transform the way we live, the way we consume the Earth's resources, and the way we do business!
Sustainable development is the only way forward.
Transforming the world seems a pretty daunting challenge. The seventeen Global Goals make it easier to understand. Fortunately, these can be condensed further into six themes:
- Basic Needs: Food, water, energy, shelter, sanitation, credit, communications, transport and health for all;
- Wellbeing: Enhanced health education, justice and equality of opportunity for all;
- Decent Work: Secure, socially inclusive jobs and working conditions for all;
- Resource Security: Preserve stocks of natural resources through efficient and circular use;
- Healthy Ecosystems: Maintain ecologically sound landscapes and seas for nature and people;
- Climate Stability:Limit Greenhouse Gas (GHG) levels to stabilise global temperature rise under 2 degrees Celsius.
Rewiring the Economy (CISL, 2015).