Closing the SDG Gap

Given the technology, knowledge, and resources now available, the gap between current progress toward the Sustainable Development Goals and what is achievable remains far too wide. Closing that gap will require smart politics, new partnerships, and bold campaigning. LAGOS – As global business and political leaders gather in Davos for the World Economic Forum’s annual meeting, they should ask themselves one big question: Will the world achieve the ambitious Sustainable Development Goals for 2030? Or will the SDGs – with their…

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Global Groundwater Is Threatened by Unsustainable Practices Amid Climate Crisis

As the planet’s thermometer continues to inch upwards, one sought-after resource is only going to increase in value: groundwater. Already, about one-third of the world’s freshwater is derived from aquifers locked away beneath our feet, and they serve more than 2 billion people, though rates of use differ drastically from country to country. Just a decade ago, these reserves provided 37 percent of the total public water supply for Americans. In the European Union, groundwater supplies 70 percent of…

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With technology and trust, we can move mountains

Also published in Revitalization, this feature story examines how science and trust came together to revive the environment – and the fortunes of a community on Ethiopia’s Yewol mountain. If you’re trying to win the trust of a community, you don’t start by building rat houses on their land. But that’s just what some residents living on Ethiopia’s Yewol mountain worried scientists were doing. They saw the slow construction of stone-pile terraces along their mountainside. And they were suspicious….

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Battling the damaging effects of ‘fast fashion’

The numbers are astronomical: to make one pair of jeans, it takes close to 8,000 litres of water—the amount a person drinks over seven years. Even a simple cotton shirt requires close to 3,000 litres of water. Within 10 uses, these jeans and shirts will be discarded for newer, trendier items, contributing to the 21 billion tons of textiles sent to landfills per year, according to the UN Economic Commission for Europe. The fashion industry is the second-most-polluting industry—coming…

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A World Without AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria

The global focus on ending AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria by 2030 has proven tremendously effective in rapidly scaling up access to treatment in developing countries. But if the world is to meet these ambitious goals, national governments and international development institutions must work together to build stronger health systems. PARIS – As part of the United Nations Agenda for Sustainable Development, the international community set itself the ambitious goal of eradicating HIV, tuberculosis, and malaria by 2030. Despite the extraordinary progress…

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Standing Up For Human Rights For Everyone

December 10 marks the Human Rights Day, a day designed by the U.N. to commemorate the U.N. General Assembly adopting, in 1948, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (the UDHR). The UDHR is a milestone human rights declaration affirming human dignity and inalienable rights of everyone. The UDHR inspired other international treaties, constitutions and human rights laws worldwide. It also continues to be the most translated international legal document in the world. The UDHR was a direct response to the Nazi atrocities…

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Reflections on farmers’ Day

Ghanaians from all walks of life are celebrating our farmers today. Over the years, our industrious farmers have not only relented in their efforts to feed the nation but have also contributed to national development and growth. As a sign of appreciation, today has been dedicated to them. Across the entire nation 24 farmers will be honoured in various categories at a ceremony in Ho in the Volta Region. Similar ceremonies will also be organised in the various regions…

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Why we need to achieve gender equality to achieve sustainable development goals by 2030

Since the United Nations formulated the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in September 2015, there has been a concerted effort to make each of the 17 goals beneficial and inclusive for all, so that no one is left behind. Equally, there needs to be an inclusive gender balance when it comes to achieving the goals. The 17 SDGs were conceptualised in 2015 when they were signed by 193-member states to ensure an end to global poverty, reduced inequalities and action…

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Goats Against Climate Change

Idai was not the first cyclone to upend the lives of farmers in southern Africa, and it won’t be the last. As climate change continues, such storms will become more frequent and intense, as will droughts, with which farmers in Mozambique already struggle. But there is a simple way to boost climate resilience for farmers in vulnerable regions: investment in goat markets. Goats are a relatively low-maintenance livestock. They do not require much up-front investment in housing or equipment. And they are hardy: goats…

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The SDGs Investments Africa Needs

Global discord represents another obstacle to Africa’s ability to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. But the continent can still play a major role in fulfilling the United Nations’ 2030 Agenda – especially if it makes further progress on tackling epidemics and strengthening national health-care systems. GENEVA – The late Michael Elliott, the former president and CEO of the anti-poverty advocacy organization ONE, described the year 2015 as the most pivotal since 1945 in terms of humanity coalescing in pursuit…

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