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Solutions: Micro meets Macro

Sustainable development is supported by three pillars: economic development, social inclusion and environmental sustainability, to which Jeffrey Sachs adds good governance. From these, the 193 UN General Assembly countries reached the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in September 2015, for which "Governments should drive implementation with the active involvement of all relevant stakeholders, as appropriate."[1]


In short, the 17 goals (SDGs) are as follows:[2]

1. End extreme poverty;

2. End hunger and promote sustainable agriculture;

3. Ensure healthy lives for all;

4. Ensure quality education and lifelong education;

5. Achieve gender equality and empower women and girls;

6. Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation;

7. Ensure access to affordable, sustainable modern energy;

8. Promote sustainable economic growth and decent work for all;

9. Build resilient infrastructure and promote sustainable industrialization;

10. Reduce inequalities within and among countries;

11. Make cities and human settlements sustainable;

12. Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns;

13. Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts;

14. Conserve the oceans and marine resources;

15. Protect and restore terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, and halt biodiversity loss;

16. Promote peaceful and inclusive societies;

17. Strengthen the means of implementation of the SDGs.


Similarly to the "Declaration of Human Rights", despite their violation in many countries still today, the SDGs seek to establish clear criteria that can be followed by all.

A global network is set up to solve sustainable development problems. Extreme nationalisms are deleterious to this structure, since our biggest problems are global.

Government participation is indispensable for the generation, distribution and management of centralized systems, such as large hydroelectric dams, wind farms or arrays of photoelectric modules in desert areas, as well as incentives for long-term research and private enterprise.

On the other hand, this top-down approach becomes fragile when it depends on the initiative of governments that are inefficient, unrepresentative of the governed, or even contaminated by corruption and private interests. In those cases, decentralized initiatives of the populations themselves become even more important.

Therefore, local or regional solutions should be stimulated and multiplied, such as municipal selective waste collection, transformation of organic waste into fertilizer by composting, the direct  planting system, fertigation associated with fish farming or wastewater treatment, the use of mini hydroelectric and tidal power plants, the collection of recyclable materials by the humble population and their use by small businesses, the green entrepreneurship for clothing in the use of materials and processes, the bioclimatic approach,  the construction with light-color or green roofs, use of rainwater and renewable energy resources.

These last topics are present in CasaE, whose solutions meet most of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), directly or indirectly, have the potential to be multiplied on a large scale, with low additional cost to that of traditional housing when properly constructed, and in a decentralized way.

[1] Jeffrey D. Sachs, The Age of Sustainable Development. NY: Columbia University Press (2015).