What are the Sustainable Development Goals?
The United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), also known as the Global Goals, are a universal blueprint designed to stimulate peace, success, and well-being for all people and the planet through achieving defined goals and targets. Building on the previous Millenium Development Goals (MDGs), the SDGs were adopted by all UN Member States in 2015 to further global action that supported sustainable development. The SDGs promote global awareness, discussion, and action between people, societies, and businesses to work towards reducing issues to create and sustain a better world.
The Global Goals & Their Relationship With Business
The SDGs are not the responsibility of one country, but of all countries and all people to work together to address major worldwide issues. Businesses and industries of all types and sizes also have a significant responsibility to contribute to achieve the SDGs by 2030. The SDGs help to shift businesses from operating with only a “profit” lens to include a “purpose” lens that fulfills global priorities. While this may be a challenging opportunity, the collective idea of the SDGs is to make sustainable development the new approach to “business as usual”.
Throughout their operations, which contribute to local and global environmental, social, and economic impacts on a daily basis, businesses have the ability to develop inventive business-lead solutions for the issues in which the SDGs aim to address.
Benefits of Aligning to The SDGs
At MapleGreen, we are presently working on aligning our operations to the SDGs which will not only help to achieve the goals by 2030 but this also holds many business-related benefits. There is strong evidence that businesses will experience the following results if they incorporate the SDGs into their business models:
- Discover new growth & profitability opportunities
- Reduce costs
- Identify and lessen business & reputation risks
- Retain & attract talented employees
- Strengthen stakeholder relationships
- Attract capital investment based on sustainability commitments & performance
- Become recognized as industry leaders & innovators
- Influence others to realize the value of corporate sustainability
- Keep pace & get ahead of future legislative developments
- Support the evolution & stability of societies and markets
- Contribute to a global method of sustainability-centered communication & action
Exploring The Goals
The 17 SDGs can be broken down into 3 categories:
While the focus of certain SDGs may be to address issues within a specific category, it is crucial that all SDGs are addressed simultaneously as they are greatly interrelated and interdependent on each other.
MapleGreen’s Alignment to the Goals
In the next blog, we will explore the Goals that MapleGreen is currently aligned to, our efforts that support each Goal, and those that we plan to contribute to more, as well as the process for how the aligned Goals were identified.
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- SDG Compass: The guide for business action on the SDGs (GRI, United Nations Global Compact, World Business Council for Sustainable Development) – https://sdgcompass.org/
- From My World to Our World: What the Sustainable Business Goals Mean for Business – https://corporate-citizenship.com/wp-content/uploads/From-My-World-to-Our-World-What-the-SDGs-Mean-For-Business2.pdf
- The Sustainable Development Goals Report 2020 (United Nations) – https://unstats.un.org/sdgs/report/2020/The-Sustainable-Development-Goals-Report-2020.pdf