Major development banks are funding logging, mining and infrastructure projects that are having enormous impacts on nature. Here, forests are being razed along a newly constructed road in central Amazonia.
Big new investors such as the Asian Infrastructure Development Bank are key players in a worldwide infrastructure, and that could be bad news for the environment.
Traffic jams in major African cities such as Lagos, pictured here, as well as Uganda’s Kampala, are a major drain on productivity.
Kampala generates about 60% of Uganda's GDP. In the coming decade urbanisation is the single largest opportunity to spur economic growth in the coming decade.
The Open Government Partnership can play an important part by increasing trust among citizens and public accountability in Africa.
The Open Government Partnership promotes transparency, public accountability and civic participation in government to combat corruption. It is hoped South Africa will help it grow in Africa.
Road development for logging in the Congo Basin.
More than thirty gigantic infrastructure projects threaten Africa's environment without offering economic benefits.
Newly built toilets at Harper transit site in Liberia.
While everyone needs access to proper sanitation to stay healthy, for girls and women it is also an issue of safety and equal participation in society.
Traffic in Accra, Ghana. With more people moving into cities, careful town planning is critical for sustainable development.
Urban planning and development in Africa has been fraught with many challenges. A study of Accra and Nairobi provides some lessons on what needs to improve.
An Egyptian engineer at work on a project to upgrade the Suez Canal. Engineers will be crucial in making the sustainable development goals a reality.
If we want the Sustainable Development Goals to be more than just big dreams, Africa will need well trained engineers who can put their skills to good use in their own communities.
Projects are underway to address sustainable energy transitions in cities like Uganda’s Kasese.
Sustainable energy is crucial for smaller African cities which are generally overlooked. These cities receive much less research and funding focus.
Proper management of Africa’s savanna regions is crucial for the continent’s climate and food security future.
Africa's savannas provide high potential for farming development but this needs to be done in a smart manner to not worsen climate change.
Solar panels are installed at a project in South Africa’s Northern Cape province.
Copyright Droogfontein Solar Power
Renewable energy programmes in South Africa need stronger policies to ensure that communities benefit.
Low carbon choices such as solar power are essential for the African continent, if it intends to stop the harmful global warming effects.
For the sake of mitigating climate change, the African continent needs to make low carbon energy choices.
Now comes the hard part.
After two years of negotiations, the UN Sustainable Development goals will be adopted today. How can society and government actually end poverty and achieve other lofty goals?
Businesses should definitely be involved in sustainable development, but watch out for ‘greenwash’.
Have the Sustainable Development Goals been co-opted by big business?
Australians are major offenders when it comes to wasting food.
Food waste image from www.shutterstock.com
By promoting more sustainable development we can improve the quality of life and opportunity here in Australia, while also promoting prosperity in the many developing countries in our region.
The Sustainable Development Goals include targets to end child marriages and female genital mutilation. Tahani (in pink) married when she was 6 - nearly half of all women in Yemen were married as children.
Stephanie Sinclair/VII Agency/EPA
The 17 Sustainable Development Goals explained in charts.
Improving maternal mortality and ending preventable deaths in children are some of the health targets in the Sustainable Development Goals.
Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade/Flickr
Health has secured its place as one of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals. But without clear mechanisms to report, finance or engage other sectors, could more end up as less?
Here’s a goal: no new coal mines.
Coal mine image from www.shutterstock.com
By championing economic growth, the Sustainable Development Goals are a barely disguised defence of the market fundamentalism that underpins business-as-usual. But in an age of planetary limits, sustained economic growth is not the solution to our social and environmental ills, but their cause.
Good governance is a foundation for sustainable development under the new goals.
Later this week, world leaders will gather at the United Nations in New York and adopt a set of Sustainable Development Goals to guide global development.
Australia’s prodigious coal output is one of the factors that count against it in a new appraisal of sustainability among OECD nations.
John Englart/Wikimedia Commons
A survey of OECD nations puts Australia 18th out of 34 on progress towards the world's new sustainability goals. It scores well on quality of life, but lets itself down on - you guessed it - climate.
What a waste.
Landfill via www.shutterstock.com
The 'linear economy' that drove 20th-century leaps in wealth is no longer sustainable, and our standard of living will not survive without a dramatic redesign.