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Towards a sustainable future

Exploring the first 8 Sustainable Development Goals

On December 2015, the International Community subscribed the United Nations’ Agenda 2030, embracing the so-called Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by committing to formulate regional, national and global “sustainable” developmental policies.

Overall, the Agenda 2030 presents 17 Sustainable Development Goals. These are the first 8.

Goal 1: End poverty in all its forms everywhere


Even if in the last two decades the number of people living in poverty has been more than halved, roughly 836 million people still live in extreme poverty: about one in five persons in developing regions lives on less than $1.25 per day. Poverty goes beyond the lack of income and usable resources, to include hunger, malnutrition, lack of access to education and basic services, discrimination and social exclusion.


  • Eradicate extreme poverty for all people everywhere.
  • Reduce at least by half the proportion of men, women and children of all ages living in poverty in all its dimensions.
  • Implement nationally appropriate social protection systems and measures for all.
  • Ensure that all men and women, in particular the poor and the vulnerable, have equal rights to economic resources, as well as access to basic services.
  • Build the resilience of the poor and those in vulnerable situations.
  • Create sound policy frameworks at the national, regional and international levels, based on pro-poor and gender-sensitive development strategies. 

Goal 2: End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture.


Due to rapid environmental degradation a profound change of the global food and agriculture system is needed, if we are to meet the challenge of feeding the hungry.




  • End hunger and ensure access by all people to safe, nutritious and sufficient food.
  • End all forms of malnutrition.
  • Double the agricultural productivity and incomes of small-scale food producers.
  • Ensure sustainable food production systems and implement resilient agricultural practices.
  • Maintain the genetic diversity of seeds, cultivated plants and farmed and domesticated animals and their related wild species.

Goal 3: Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages


Despite successful and encouraging progresses, roughly 6 million children continue to die before reaching their fifth birthday. Health per se is not enough as other factors array into the promotion of well-being.




  • Reduce the global maternal mortality ratio and end preventable deaths of new-borns and children.
  • End all epidemics of AIDS, malaria, tuberculosis and all neglected tropical diseases.
  • Guarantee the treatment and foster prevention of substance abuse.
  • Guarantee universal access to sexual and reproductive health-care services.
  • Encourage R&D on vaccines and medicines for those diseases primarily affecting developing countries.

Goal 4: Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all


Quality education ensures the improvement of societal well-being and the fostering of sustainable forms of development. Despite an average primary school completion rate of 91% across developing countries, roughly 59 million children of primary-school age are left out of school every year.


  • Ensure that all boys and girls complete free, equitable and quality primary and secondary education leading to concrete and effective learning outcomes.
  • Guarantee equal access to all men and women to quality technical, vocational and tertiary education –including university education.
  • Abolish gender disparities in education while ensuring equal access to all levels of education and vocational trainings for the vulnerable.
  • Expand substantially the number of scholarships available to developing countries for enrolment in all forms of higher education.

Goal 5: Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls


Despite improvements in gender equality and women’s empowerment, women and girls continue to suffer discriminations and abuses worldwide.





  • End all forms of discrimination against all women and girls.
  • Eliminate all forms of violence against all women and girls.
  • Eliminate all harmful practices, such as child, early and forced marriages and female genital mutilation.
  • Recognize and value unpaid care and domestic work.
  • Ensure women’s full and effective participation and equal opportunities for leadership at all levels of decision-making.
  • Ensure universal access to sexual and reproductive health and reproductive rights.
  • Adopt and strengthen sound policies and enforceable legislation for the promotion of gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls. 

Goal 6: Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all.


Due to inadequate infrastructures and poor economic management, millions of people continue to perish for water-related illnesses, inadequate health services and wide-spared droughts, particularly targeting developing countries by driving famines and malnutrition.




  • Achieve universal and equitable access to safe and affordable drinking water.
  • Achieve universal access to adequate and equitable sanitation and hygiene.
  • Improve water quality by reducing pollution, eliminating dumping and minimizing release of hazardous chemicals and materials.
  • Increase water-use efficiency across all sectors.
  • Implement integrated water resources management at all levels.
  • Protect and restore water-related ecosystems, including mountains, forests, wetlands, rivers, aquifers and lakes.
  • Expand international cooperation and capacity-building support to developing countries in water and sanitation-related activities.

Goal 7: Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all


Energy is fundamental to address almost all major challenges and opportunities the world is currently facing. However, 1 in 5 people still lacks access to modern energy sources.





  • Guarantee universal access to affordable, reliable and modern energy services.
  • Increase substantially the share of renewable energy in the global energy mix.
  • Enhance international cooperation to facilitate access to clean energy.
  • Expand infrastructure and upgrade technology for supplying modern and sustainable energy services for all in developing countries.

Goal 8: Promote inclusive and sustainable economic growth, employment and decent work for all


As of 2016, about half of the world’s population continues to live on the equivalent of US$2 per day and, even where employment opportunities have been created, many households have not managed to escape from poverty.



  • Sustain per capita economic growth in accordance with national circumstances and, in particular, at least 7 per cent gross domestic product growth per annum in the least developed countries.
  • Achieve higher levels of economic productivity through diversification, technological upgrading and innovation.
  • Promote development-oriented policies that support productive activities, decent job creation, entrepreneurship, creativity and innovation, and encourage the formalization and growth of micro-, small- and medium-sized enterprises, including through access to financial services.
  • Improve progressively, through 2030, global resource efficiency in consumption and production and endeavour to decouple economic growth from environmental degradation.
  • Achieve full and productive employment and decent work for all women and men.
  • Take immediate and effective measures to eradicate forced labour, end modern slavery and human trafficking and secure the prohibition and elimination of the worst forms of child labour.
  • Protect labour rights and promote safe and secure working environment.
  • Devise and implement policies to promote sustainable tourism that creates jobs and promotes local culture and products.
  • Strengthen the capacity of domestic financial institutions to encourage and expand access to banking, insurance and financial services for all.
  • Increase Aid for Trade support for developing countries, in particular least developed countries, including through the Enhanced Integrated Framework for Trade-Related Technical Assistance to Least Developed Countries.
  • Develop and operationalize a global strategy for youth employment and implement the Global Jobs Pact of the International Labour Organization.