You’ve heard the letters S, D, and G being used a lot lately, but what do they mean? In this week’s PATA Sustain’s green tips, we are passing along our top tips that can help you do your part to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.
1. Knowledge is power
The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development aims to shift the world onto a sustainable and resilient path. The United Nations have set a supremely ambitious and transformational vision to realize the human rights of all and balance the three dimensions of sustainable development: the economic, social and environmental. Therefore, the first step for us to be involved is to read and understand as much we as can. We understand that most people do not have the patience to read reports that are over 40 pages long. So here is an article by The Guardian on Sustainable development goals: all you need to know. If that is still too much for you, watch a short clip about the SDGs here.
Don’t stop there though, follow the UN Sustainable Development Goals platform on Facebook here. PATA also has a free publication available for download: The Olive Tree, which explores how the SDGs and travel and tourism are interlinked. Educate yourself on the problems that happen all over the world and learn from the best practices!
2. Support your government and companies in your country
The UN provides substantive support and capacity building for the SDGs and their related thematic issues, including water, energy, climate, oceans, urbanization, transport, science and technology, and many more. It won’t take you long to realise that these issues may already be impacting your neighborhood. In order to make the 2030 agenda a reality, we need the commitment from all stakeholders, especially the ones that are closest to us.
This brings us back to tip #1: Knowledge. Start by finding out if your government has integrated the SDGs into the country development plan. See this full list of countries that are involved in the UN’s Voluntary National Reviews (VNRs). TheVNRs aim to facilitate the sharing of experiences between nations, including success, challenges and lessons learned. If your country is listed, chances are your government or local organisations already have events planned in efforts to support the SDGs. For example, Green Fins Thailand, an initiative by United Nations and Reef-World Foundation, contributes to the Sustainable Development Goals 14 (Life Below Water) and 12 (Sustainable Consumption and Production) by carrying out regular beach and coastal clean-ups. This is also a great opportunity for local communities to be involved.
3. The time is now
If you don’t already work for an organisation that fully supports the SDGs, you can still do your part by volunteering! Join the Scholars of Sustenance Foundation team to go on food runs to contribute to Goal 2 (Zero Hunger). If you simply cannot find the time to do, you may be surprised at just how easy it is for you to make a change. Contribute to Goal 13 (Climate Action) by reducing food waste to landfill.
If gender equality is of big importance to you, contribute to Goal 2 (Gender Equality) by supporting the rights of domestic workers in your home and community. Did you know that tens and millions of women and girls are employed in a private household? Despite their important roles, they are among the most exploited and abused workers in the world. Visit “My Fair Home” to take a pledge!
Did you know?
Every year, the UN SDG Action Award recognises individuals, civil society organizations, subnational governments, foundations, networks, private sector leaders who are advancing the global movement for the Sustainable Development Goals in the most transformative, impactful and innovative way. The winners will be announced at a special SDG Action Awards ceremony, at the Global Festival of Action on 2 May.
Keep a look out for award nominees by following their facebook page.
In a nutshell, the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are the blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all. We must continue to address the global challenges that the world is currently facing. We need to wake up and realise that human behaviour is the main reason for our increasingly volatile planet. Together, we can make a change.
Read more of #PATASustain green tips here.