While criticism of all the SDGs and questioning their effectiveness seems like a piece of cake, It’s time we consider the possibility of success for once in our lives. So here is a to a day that may be some time be the present.
Flash forward to 2030. All sustainable development goals are fulfilled, the world is at peace.
“Utopia (/juːˈtoʊpiə/ yoo-TOH-pee-ə) is an imagined community or society that possesses highly desirable or nearly perfect qualities for its citizens.”
The word is now not just an imagination but a reality, how does that make you feel? (Good? Great? content?) While all of the Sustainable development goals are well thought of and are the need of the hour the question in my head remains what happens after?
Because the current situation we are surviving in is because no one ever does ask this question.
The people do what is needed but they never think of what after that. We win wars and eradicate diseases but we never see what we will lose.
NO POVERTY. (sounds absolutely lovely, doesn’t it?) But to be clear let’s go to the book shall we?
Fun fact: The UN has categorised poverty into 2 types i.e absolute poverty and overall poverty.
Absolute poverty was defined as: a condition characterised by severe deprivation of basic human needs, including food, safe drinking water, sanitation facilities, health, shelter, education and information. It depends not only on income but also on access to services.
Overall poverty takes various forms, including: Lack of income and productive resources to ensure sustainable livelihoods; hunger and malnutrition; ill health; limited or lack of access to education and other basic services; increased morbidity and mortality from illness; homelessness and inadequate housing; unsafe environments and social discrimination and exclusion.
But again in 2030 these things will not exist, so does that mean that the whole concept of poverty will just vanish? Or will we create new dimensions for the poor and unprivillged in that present?
QUALITY EDUCATION. (This ought to be good,eh?) 2030 everyone has the means to access ad achieve all the academic success they desire. Let’s see what the book says “A good quality education is one that provides all learners with capabilities they require to become economically productive, develop sustainable livelihoods, contribute to peaceful and democratic societies and enhance individual well-being.”
But listen to this, all of the people in utopia have gotten a quality education if everyone is a skilled labour working high-end jobs, who will waiter you in restaurants? Chauffeur you around in public transport? Clean your house? (it’s not like you can do that on your own?)
And what will we do when these goals collide with each other, who decides which goal hold more importance? For instance goals like ZERO HUNGER and RESPONSIBLE PRODUCTION AND CONSUMPTION require food security but Biodiversity i.e LIFE ON LAND could be threatened if forests are cut down to expand agricultural production and intensive agriculture could threaten water security i.e LIFE BELOW WATER along with CLEAN WATER AND SANITATION. So when we these conflicts arise who decides what happens? (Do you? Do I? Does Trump?)
And even if none of this happens and all of us live peacefully in utopia and global warming is just a word, equality, peace and justice are achieved what will we do when the one thing we neglected all this while happens? What I mean is what happens when the sun expands into a red giant during the throes of death?
Perhaps not the story you were hoping for, but there’s no need to start buying star-death insurance yet because what do I know I’m just a girl with a laptop right? (or an old resentful man)