A sustainable development pathway for climate action within the UN 2030 Agenda

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Abstract

Ambitious climate policies, as well as economic development, education, technological progress and less resource-intensive lifestyles, are crucial elements for progress towards the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). However, using an integrated modelling framework covering 56 indicators or proxies across all 17 SDGs, we show that they are insufficient to reach the targets. An additional sustainable development package, including international climate finance, progressive redistribution of carbon pricing revenues, sufficient and healthy nutrition and improved access to modern energy, enables a more comprehensive sustainable development pathway. We quantify climate and SDG outcomes, showing that these interventions substantially boost progress towards many aspects of the UN Agenda 2030 and simultaneously facilitate reaching ambitious climate targets. Nonetheless, several important gaps remain; for example, with respect to the eradication of extreme poverty (180 million people remaining in 2030). These gaps can be closed by 2050 for many SDGs while also respecting the 1.5 °C target and several other planetary boundaries.

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Soergel, B., Kriegler, E., Weindl, I., Rauner, S., Dirnaichner, A., Ruhe, C., … Popp, A. (2021). A sustainable development pathway for climate action within the UN 2030 Agenda. Nature Climate Change, 11(8), 656–664. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41558-021-01098-3

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