Changing technology and financial crisis is affecting sustainability says a UN report


  • Business’ contribution to the Sustainable Development Goals is still not aligned, finds a corporate sustainability study from the United Nations Global Compact and Accenture.
  • Over 200 companies surveyed are taking action towards climate change and said that they will reduce their greenhouse gas emissions to net-zero by 2050.
  • The UN’s Sustainable Development Goals laid out in 2015, which was aimed to end extreme poverty, human rights for all, and a low carbon economy over the next decade.
  • In the present scenario, nearly 700 million people still live in extreme poverty while over 170 million remain jobless, globally.
In the last four year, the world has seen many socio-economic, geopolitical and technological uncertainties. They have distracted CEOs from their sustainability efforts, says a study by the United Nations Global Compact and Accenture.

According to the study titled ‘ ‘The Decade to Deliver: A Call to Business Action,’merely one-fifth of the chief executives believe that businesses are contributing enough to achieve global goals.

This is despite the fact that almost half of the businesses have looped in sustainability in their business operations. Over 200 companies surveyed are taking action towards climate change and said that they will reduce their greenhouse gas emissions to net-zero by 2050.

According to the report, 87 companies including Bharti Airtel, Reliance Jio Infocomm, Ericsson Group, Nokia and Wipro announced that they are moving towards ‘1.5°C future’. This means that they will limit operations that have negative impact on climate change.

“To accelerate progress, CEOs identify three critical requirements. First, an urgent need to prioritize action against the 17 SDGs. Second, the need for business, governments, regulators and non-governmental organizations to come together to shape realistic, science-based solutions. And third, redefining responsible leadership to help business to be a leading driver of g global goals,” the report said.

The UN laid out Sustainable Development Goals in 2015, with an aim to end extreme poverty, human rights for all, and a low carbon economy over the next decade.

However, nearly 700 million people still live in extreme poverty while over 170 million remain jobless, globally. This is due to the extreme climate events, overpopulation, water scarcity, and gender-based violence.

“With less than 4,000 days remaining until the 2030 target, business leaders are not content with current progress and are calling for their sectors and peers to step-up and turn commitment into action,” said Lise Kingo, CEO and Executive Director of the United Nations Global Compact.

The study surveyed over 1,000 CEOs from global organisations from over 1,600 companies across 100 nations to study the business contribution to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

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