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Ruth Williams DipCAM FCIM

17 Goals for People and Planet

The 17 Global Goals are designed to end poverty, protect the planet and improve the lives and prospects of everyone, everywhere. Today, progress is being made in many places, but how do we all manifest these goals in our own lives and businesses we work in?

May 2021

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) or Global Goals are a collection of 17 interlinked global goals designed to be a "blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all". The SDGs were set in 2015 by the United Nations General Assembly and are intended to be achieved by the year 2030.


The Sustainable Development Goals are a universal call to action to end poverty, protect the planet and improve the lives and prospects of everyone, everywhere.


Today, progress is being made in many places, but how do we all manifest these goals in our own lives and indeed in the businesses that we work in?


Between things you can do at home to things you can do at work, there are easy ways to start saving the planet.


Things you can do at home

  • Air dry. Let your hair and clothes dry naturally instead of running a machine. If you do wash your clothes, make sure the load is full.
  • Take short showers. Bathtubs require gallons more water than a 5-10 minute shower.
  • Eat less meat, poultry, and fish. More resources are used to provide meat than plants
  • Freeze fresh produce and leftovers if you don’t have the chance to eat them before they go bad. You can also do this with take-away or delivered food, if you know you will not feel like eating it the next day. You will save food and money.
  • Compost—composting food scraps can reduce climate impact while also recycling nutrients.
  • Recycling paper, plastic, glass & aluminium keeps landfills from growing.
  • Buy minimally packaged goods.
  • Avoid pre-heating the oven. Unless you need a precise baking temperature, start heating your food right when you turn on the oven.
  • Plug air leaks in windows and doors to increase energy efficiency
  • Adjust your thermostat, lower in winter, higher in summer
  • Replace old appliances with energy efficient models and light bulbs
  • If you have the option, install solar panels in your house. This will also reduce your electricity bill!
  • Get a rug. Carpets and rugs keep your house warm and your thermostat low.
  • Don’t rinse. If you use a dishwasher, stop rinsing your plates before you run the machine.
  • Choose a better diaper option. Swaddle your baby in cloth diapers or a new, environmentally responsible disposable brand.
  • Shovel snow manually. Avoid the noisy, exhaust-churning snow blower and get some exercise.

 

Things you can do at work

  • If you have a fruit or snack that you don’t want, don’t throw it out. Give it away to someone who needs and is asking for help.
  • Does everyone at work have access to healthcare? Find out what your rights are to work. Fight against inequality.
  • Mentor young people. It’s a thoughtful, inspiring and a powerful way to guide someone towards a better future.
  • Women earn 10 to 30 per cent less than men for the same work. Pay inequality persists everywhere. Voice your support for equal pay for equal work.
  • 4 billion people lack access to basic sanitation services. Lend your voice to talk about the lack of toilets in many communities around the world!
  • Make sure your company uses energy efficient heating and cooling technology, and adjust the thermostat, lower in winter, higher in summer.
  • Stay informed. Read about workers in other countries and business practices. Talk to your colleagues about these issues.
  • Does your company invest in clean and resilient infrastructure? It’s the only way to keep workers safe and protect the environment.
  • Raise your voice against any type of discrimination in your office. Everyone is equal regardless of their gender, race, sexual orientation, social background and physical abilities.
  • Bike, walk or take public transport to work. Save the car trips for when you’ve got a big group.
  • Speak up! Ask your company and Government to engage in initiatives that will not harm people or the planet. Voice your support for Paris Agreement!
  • Try to reduce waste, since most waste ends up in our oceans.
  • Examine and change everyday decisions. Can you recycle at your workplace? Is your company buying from merchants engaging in harmful ecological practices?
  • Know your workplace rights to ensure your access to justice.
  • Corporate social responsibility counts! Encourage your company to work with civil society and find ways to help local communities achieve the goals.
  • Invest in your workforce skills by running short awareness courses designed to give your workers a basic understanding of sustainability.

Workforce Sustainability Skills

IEMA have launched a one-day workforce sustainability skills course. The sustainability training course provides learners with a practical introduction to environmental sustainability, ensuring learners are equipped with the knowledge, understanding and motivation to make a positive difference within their organisation. This course is perfect for those working in any job role across all sectors, to ensure that environmental sustainability is embedded in to all job roles of a company.

Please click below to look at more information surrounding the IEMA Environmental Sustainability Skills for the Workforce course! 

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