Let’s make the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) our own

By Jose Luis Gallego. Environmental promoter (@ecogallego)

The start of a new year is a good time to take stock of our personal ambitions and try to align them with the goals we must work towards together, as a society.

 

In the same spirit, in autumn 2015 the United Nations (UN) called on world leaders to adopt a set of common goals for the next 15 years. With this pact a common agenda was created, the so-called ‘2030 Agenda’, which includes the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG).

 

Los 17 objetivos de desarrollo sostenible. Fuente: ONU

The 17 Sustainable Development Goals. Source: UN

 

 

From working together against poverty and hunger and in favour of peace and justice, to protecting life below water and in terrestrial ecosystems; from reinventing cities by making them healthier and more sustainable, to joining forces to ensure access for all to safe drinking water and sanitation, the SDGs represent humanity’s roadmap for moving towards a better future on a better planet.

 

In order to achieve these results, the SDGs urge world leaders to promote clean and renewable energies, reduce inequalities, increase action to combat climate change and help us all to adapt to changes. To achieve industry that’s more innovative and committed to the environment and to drive more responsible consumption.

 

But for this final entry of the year I’d like to focus on the last of those seventeen challenges: number 17, which is about the collaborative effort it will take to fulfil this plan of action.

 

With this SDG, the UN encourages us to forge partnerships and align goals, emphasising that, ‘For the goals to be met, everyone needs to do their part: governments, the private sector, civil society and the general public: people like you’.

 

And that ‘you’ implies all the citizens of the world. The lengths we go to in order to achieve them don’t matter, because as the famous environmental saying goes, ‘small changes are powerful’. And in them, in the sum of these small gestures, lies the success of the global improvements gathered in that colourful, ambitious mosaic of good intentions that is the 17 SDGs.

 

There will likely be many who believe that certain goals are missing, and that this or that one should be added. Personally, I would only add one more: that of regaining optimism and the joy of living as a society.

 

The COVID-19 pandemic has been playing out for too long, leaving us worn out and exhausted. That’s why we need to include, particularly after the lessons we’ve learned from these unprecedented times, a goal with which to appreciate being in the here and now. It’s up to us to really cherish the fact that we live on this beautiful planet, look after it as if it were our own home (because it really is) and make the SDGs our own.

 

This is a task that companies cannot and should not ignore. That’s why it’s so important that, from large multinational companies down to small family businesses, we all adopt these goals as our own, something which Familia Torres has done with its extensive catalogue of good practices for complying with the SDGs.

 

A long list of actions that includes installing treatment and reuse systems for the wastewater generated by its production processes (goal 6), building its own renewable energy facilities (with 5,438 KW of installed power) and supporting sustainable mobility (82% of commercial vehicles are hybrids and electric), part of goal 7.

 

All this comes within the framework of the company’s firm commitment to contributing to mitigating and adapting to the climate crisis (goal 13). Indeed, with this commitment Familia Torres already managed to reduce its CO2 emissions by -34% in 2020, and is continuing to make fixed progress towards a -60% reduction in emissions by 2030 and reaching its goal of becoming a carbon neutral winery by 2050.

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