addressalign-toparrow-leftarrow-rightbackbellblockcalendarcameraccwcheckchevron-downchevron-leftchevron-rightchevron-small-downchevron-small-leftchevron-small-rightchevron-small-upchevron-upcircle-with-checkcircle-with-crosscircle-with-pluscontroller-playcredit-cardcrossdots-three-verticaleditemptyheartexporteye-with-lineeyefacebookfolderfullheartglobe--smallglobegmailgooglegroupshelp-with-circleimageimagesinstagramFill 1launch-new-window--smalllight-bulblinklocation-pinm-swarmSearchmailmessagesminusmoremuplabelShape 3 + Rectangle 1ShapeoutlookpersonJoin Group on CardStartprice-ribbonprintShapeShapeShapeShapeImported LayersImported LayersImported Layersshieldstartickettrashtriangle-downtriangle-uptwitteruserwarningyahoo

The Melbourne Environmental & Sustainability Group Message Board › Millenium Goals and why do they matter? Article from Engineers Australia

Millenium Goals and why do they matter? Article from Engineers Australia

A former member
Post #: 8
What are the "Millennium Development Goals" & Why do they matter?

In September 2000, 189 nations gathered to place sustainable development as a global priority, through the adoption of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). These goals set clear targets for the reduction of poverty, hunger, disease, illiteracy, environmental degradation and discrimination against women by 2015[8] . These goals are summarised below.

Why reaching the Environmental Goals is so important for the other Millennium Goals.

1. Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger
The livelihood and food security of the poor often depends on ecosystem goods and services. The poor often have insecure rights to environmental resources and inadequate access to markets, decision-making and environmental information, limiting their ability to protect the environment and improve their livelihoods and wellbeing.

2. Achieve universal primary education
Time spent by children collecting water and fuel wood reduces the time available for schooling. In addition, the lack of energy, water and sanitation services in rural areas discourages qualified teachers from working in poor villages.

3. Promote gender equality
Women and girls are especially burdened by water and fuel collection, reducing their time and opportunities for education, literacy and income-generating activities.

4. Reduce child mortality
Diseases (such as diarrhoea) tied to unclean water and inadequate sanitation, and respiratory infections related to pollution are among the leading killers of children under five. Lack of fuel for boiling water also contributes to preventable waterborne diseases.

5. Improve maternal health
Inhaling polluted indoor air and carrying heavy loads of water and fuel wood impacts significantly on women's health. This can make them less fit to bear children and place them at greater risk of complications during pregnancy.

6. Combat major diseases
Up to 20 percent of the disease burden in developing countries may be due to environmental risk factors (as with malaria and parasitic infections).

7. Develop a global partnership
Many global environmental problems, such as climate change, loss of species diversity and depletion of global fisheries, can be solved only through partnerships between rich and poor countries.

Source: Hargroves & Smith (2005) The Natural Advantage of Nations, Earthscan, London.

The UN Millennium Goals Committee has made it clear that meeting the environmental MDGs is vital for the achievement of the other goals of poverty reduction and improved health outcomes. So what does this mean for the engineering profession? Engineers Australia believes that the Engineering profession is an integral part of the solution to addressing these millennium goals and improving conditions for all life on this planet. Engaging with governments, business and local communities to provide appropriate infrastructure and technical solutions is second nature to engineers. It is our responsibility to rise to the challenge presented by the United Nations and to play our part in facilitating the transition to a more sustainable world.

Engineers Australia believes that the Engineering profession is an integral part of the solution to addressing these millennium goals and improving conditions for all life on this planet.

If we reflect on a significant time of change in human development history - the Industrial Revolution - we can clearly see that almost no attention was paid to development impact on 'systems' (ecosystems) required for the planet's survival. Bill McDonough Time Hero of the Planet (1999) puts it like this, 'If someone were to present the Industrial Revolution as a retroactive design assignment, it might sound like this: Design a system of production that:

• puts billions of kilograms of toxic material into the air, water and soil every year;
• measures prosperity by activity, not legacy;
• requires thousands of complex regulations to keep people and natural systems from being poisoned too quickly;
• produces materials so dangerous that they will require constant vigilance from future generations;
• results in gigantic amounts of waste;
• puts valuable materials in holes all over the planet, where they can never be retrieved; and
• erodes the diversity of biological species and cultural practices.

Obviously, we cannot sustain this approach forever! The recent publication Natural Advantage of Nations makes the point that no matter how determined a company or a nation is to change, these changes will take time to implement. So we have no time to waste. Very simply, the sooner we start, the longer we have to phase changes in, the less disruptive and more beneficial this will be to business and society and the best chance we have of long-term success.

Engineers Australia believes that the Engineering profession is an integral part of the solution to addressing these millennium goals and improving conditions for all life on this planet.

So we have no time to waste.
Powered by mvnForum

People in this
Meetup are also in:

Sign up

Meetup members, Log in

By clicking "Sign up" or "Sign up using Facebook", you confirm that you accept our Terms of Service & Privacy Policy