We face great challenges in a globalized and modern world that we, humanity, have built. The fulfillment of the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in 2030 is essential to make a planet with a viable future. Achieving them not only depends on the will of governments, institutions or people. The application of technologies that, with their multiplying effect, allow achieving the goals is extremely important. Technological innovation plays a decisive role in the evolution of changes towards a new model that involves improving development, without leaving anyone behind, and with the focus on avoiding inequality and injustice, ensuring better protection of the environment.
We will work together to foster global economic growth, while harnessing the power of technological innovation, in particular digitalization, and its application for the benefit of all. We are resolved to build a society capable of seizing opportunities, and tackling economic, social and environmental challenges, presented today and in the future, including those of demographic change. This recovery is supported by the continuation of accommodative financial conditions and stimulus measures taking effect in some countries. However, growth remains low and risks remain tilted to the downside. Most importantly, trade and geopolitical tensions have intensified. We will continue to address these risks, and stand ready to take further action. Fiscal policy should be flexible and growth-friendly while rebuilding buffers where needed and ensuring debt as a share of GDP is on a sustainable path. Monetary policy will continue to support economic activity and ensure price stability, consistent with central banks' mandates. Central bank decisions need to remain well communicated.
"I will not sell the future for instant profit!" Werner von Siemens, 1884 In Atlas Shrugged (1957), by Ayn Rand, the system falls apart to the point that the remaining producers choose to simply withdraw rather than proliferate and disrupt the society from within. "In 1995, Fukuyama argued that only those societies with a high degree of social trust would be able to create the kind of flexible, large-scale business organizations that are needed for successful competition in the global economy." Carrying proudly the responsibility of its 170 years history and legacy, a Tech Giant, an Atlas of the modern era of turbulent markets and exponentially growing challenges, the largest industrial manufacturing company in Europe with its footprint in 180 countries around the globe, the German conglomerate company Siemens AG (German pronunciation: [ˈziːmɛns]) is shaping the future – the digital future. "With its Vision 2020, Siemens has recently once again clearly answered these questions: a company faces up to its responsibilities, furnishes lasting benefit and generates added value from a position of strength – for its shareholders, employees, customers, business partners and societies all over the world. Joe Kaeser, President and Chief Executive Officer of Siemens AG, puts it like this: "Only the strong can help the weak, take responsibility and then fulfill it.
As the human population has grown, we have taken and modified more and more land, leaving less and less for nonhuman species. This is clearly unsustainable, and the amount of land we protect for nature needs to be increased and preserved. However, this still leaves vast regions of the world unprotected and modified. Such landscapes do not have to be a lost cause. Kremen and Merenlender review how biodiversity-based techniques can be used to manage most human-modified lands as "working landscapes." These can provide for human needs and maintain biodiversity not just for ecosystem services but also for maintenance and persistence of nonhuman species. Biodiversity is under siege, with greatly enhanced rates of local and global extinction and the decline of once-abundant species. How do we handle the Anthropocene's triple challenge of preventing biodiversity loss, mitigating and adapting to climate change, and sustainably providing resources for a growing human population? The answer is in how we manage Earth's "working lands"; that is, farms, forests, and rangelands. These lands must be managed both to complement the biodiversity conservation goals of protected areas and to maintain the diverse communities of organisms, from microbes to mammals, that contribute to producing food, materials, clean water, and healthy soils; sequestering greenhouse gases; and buffering extreme weather events, functions that are essential for all life on Earth. Protected areas are the cornerstone of biodiversity conservation.
Sometimes the news about our environment can feel a little monotonous. We read the same old headlines about how important the environment is, how the situation is getting worse, and how'we' (whoever that is) need to do something about it. On World Environment Day 2018, it's time to inject some hope and inspiration into the mix. It's time to'go big' and work together to transform current thinking and operating models, especially since it's now clear these models have not worked well enough, and have often only produced incremental change. In that spirit, here are 6 big ideas that could create a more sustainable relationship between our economic markets, natural environment, and communities.