Sustainable Development Goals
“We don’t have a plan B because there is no planet B”
Ban Ki Moon, former UN Secretary General.
The 193 member states of the United Nations, spearheaded by Ban Ki Moon, have established 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). These goals cover a broad range of sustainable development issues. Among the issues to be tackled are putting an end to poverty and hunger, improving health and education, making cities more sustainable, combating climate change, and protecting oceans and forests.
EcoMatcher is committed to helping its partners to meet these goals. The initial focus for those planting trees with Ecomatcher is on the following SDGs: goal 10 (inequality), goal 13 (climate change), goal 15 (life on land) and goal 17 (partnerships). This article describes the goals more in detail, what we do and how you can help.
GOAL 10: INEQUALITY
Significant progress has been made lifting people out of poverty. The least developed countries continue to make inroads into poverty reduction. It must be said, however, that inequality still persists, especially in regard to access to health and education services and other assets. There is growing consensus that economic growth is not sufﬁcient to reduce poverty if it is not inclusive and if it does not involve the three dimensions of sustainable development – economic, social and environmental.
Tree planting in countries like Indonesia, Philippines, and Uganda not only helps the environment, it also supports local farmers to improve their style of living. The trees can help to improve the soil quality, increase shade and provide biomass, all of which can help in growing food crops in the future. Improving land through tree planting can re-enfranchise local people and give them some autonomy.
GOAL 13: CLIMATE ACTION
Climate change is challenging many communities. Those on the front lines of the changing weather patterns, rising sea levels, and more extreme weather events are already often beginning to struggle. The greenhouse gas emissions from human activities are driving climate change and continue to rise.
Climate change is a global challenge that does not respect national borders. Emissions anywhere affect people everywhere and carbon sequestration somewhere affects climate change anywhere. All too often it is those who have least, who are less able to adapt, who suffer the most.
Trees are the lungs of the world absorbing carbon dioxide and breathing oxygen. Studies suggest that trees planted in the tropics are most effective in cooling our planet, since the trees not only sequester carbon when planted near the equator but also store water and, when that water evaporates, create cloudiness above them which reflects more solar radiation back into space. Planting trees in the tropics, then, is the best way to combat our global problem.
Goal 15: LIFE ON LAND
Forests are key to combating climate change, protecting biodiversity and the homes of the indigenous population. Thirteen million hectares of forests are lost every year while the persistent degradation of drylands has led to the desertification of 3.6 billion hectares.
Deforestation and desertification – caused by human activities and climate change – pose major challenges to sustainable development and have affected the lives and livelihoods of millions of people as well as degrading important ecosystems.
It should go without saying that tree planting is a key activity in tackling deforestation and desertification.
Goal 17: PARTNERSHIPS
No man is an island. A successful sustainable development agenda requires partnerships between governments, the private sector, and civil society. Urgent action is needed to mobilize, redirect and unlock the transformative power of trillions of dollars of private resources to deliver on sustainable development objectives.
EcoMatcher has designed a concept that can scale. Of course, we can not do things in splendid isolation and look actively for partnerships. We reach out to companies, other e-commerce platforms, airlines, hotels and impact investors and work in concert with them to do good to work towards our common goals and become part of a global solution rather than a global problem… trying to have a little bit of fun along the way.
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