The UN Has 17 Sustainable Goals To Help Us All Work Toward World Peace

September 21, 2016

The United Nations has a set of 17 core goals for sustainable development. In honor of International Day of Peace, we broke them down step by step. There's a long way to go on each of them. But don't worry, there's good news, too.

Facts and images from United Nations Development Programs.

1. NO POVERTY

More than 800 million people live on less than $1.25 a day.

The good news: Bill Gates thinks chickens could alleviate poverty in Africa, so he's giving away 100,000 of them.

2. ZERO HUNGER

An estimated 795 million people were chronically undernourished in 2014, and 90 million children younger than 5 years old were significantly underweight.

The good news: Volunteers in India and Pakistan have fed more than 1 million people with their "Robin Hood Army."

3. GOOD HEALTH AND WELL-BEING

Preventable deaths of children are down by more than half since 1990, but 16,000 children worldwide still die every day from preventable diseases like measles and tuberculosis.

The good news: A new software program may reduce childbirth deaths in areas that need it the most.

4. QUALITY EDUCATION

The number of children out of school has dropped by almost half since 2000, and there are far more girls with access to education than before.

The bad news: Even the U.S. is expected to miss the U.N.'s goal of universal primary and secondary education by 2030.

5. GENDER EQUALITY

Sexual and domestic violence, unequal pay, and discrimination in (and out) of the workplace still prevent gender equality worldwide.

The good news: If we ended gender inequality overnight, it could pay off globally in the trillions.

6. CLEAN WATER AND SANITATION

Water is scarce for more than 40 percent of people around the world, and climate change is expected to make that number climb.

The good news: The small town of Matheny Tract is a test case for water as a human right. A new California law makes clean water the responsibility of the state.

7. AFFORDABLE AND CLEAN ENERGY

About 1 in 5 people worldwide still don't have access to electricity, but there has been significant growth since 1990. As more people use electricity, the increase in greenhouse gasses continues to grow and contribute to climate change.

The good (and bad) news: Solar power is a good financial investment… but only in some areas.

8. DECENT WORK AND ECONOMIC GROWTH

The global economy is growing, but the growth has slowed and inequality is on the rise.

The good news: The shea butter in your lotion is "gold" for some African women.

9. INDUSTRY, INNOVATION AND INFRASTRUCTURE

More than half the world's population now lives in cities, which makes infrastructure, including energy and public transportation, more important than ever.

The good news: This South Side bike shop is working to revitalize Chicago's old "Black Metropolis."

10. REDUCED INEQUALITIES

Income inequality is rising. The wealthiest 10 percent of the world's population earn 40 percent of the global income.

The bad news: Two decades later and apartheid still lingers in South Africa — these drone pictures prove it.

11. SUSTAINABLE CITIES AND COMMUNITIES

Cities, and especially "mega-cities" (cities with 10 million people or more), have been growing rapidly. This results in added pressure to improve the conditions and environmental effects of cities around the world.

The good news: Building cities around public transit could make urban life greener — and more fun.

12. RESPONSIBLE CONSUMPTION AND PRODUCTION

Wasteful consumption habits have serious long-term economic and ecological repercussions.

The good news: Major fashion brands are investing in recycled clothing.

13. CLIMATE ACTION

Higher levels of carbon dioxide, warmer global temperatures, and increases in natural disasters like earthquakes, tsunamis and flooding caused by climate change continue to take a massive global toll.

The good news: The U.S., Mexico and Canada are teaming up to fight climate change.

14. LIFE BELOW WATER

Littering and growing levels of greenhouse gasses are harming the crucial ecosystems of our oceans.

The good news: Our oceans are littered with millions of tons of trash, but this nonprofit has ambitious plans to clean them up.

15. LIFE ON LAND

Drought, air and water pollution, deforestation and poaching combine to put the land that humans rely on at risk.

The bad news: It only took us 20 years to destroy 10 percent of the Earth's wilderness.

16. PEACE, JUSTICE AND STRONG INSTITUTIONS

"Without peace, stability, human rights and effective governance, based on the rule of law — we cannot hope for sustainable development." - United Nations Development Programs

The good news: There are things you can do right now to improve policing in your city.

17. PARTNERSHIPS FOR THE GOALS

The U.N. works with partners ranging from national governments to nonprofits and private sector businesses. See more about how they work in tandem to achieve these goals.