Infographics Project – Sustainable Development Goals | Issue III

The new Infographics Project concerns the Sustainable Development Goals, as set out in Agenda 2030. Agenda 2030 was agreed in 2015 by all UN member states, and consists of 17 goals, 169 subsections and 231 individual indicators. The Sustainable Development Goals are divided into three (3) pillars: the Social, the Environmental and the Economic. In the “Infographics Project – Sustainable Development Goals” will be developed in six issues both the 3 pillars of sustainability and the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (hereinafter SDGs from the English terminology Sustainable Development Goals), using individual indicators. The analysis will focus on both the comparative position and the course of Greece in these indicators in relation to the 27 countries of the European Union. The purpose of this project is to highlight the position of Greece among the other member states of the European Union, as well as the margins for further improvement in terms of sustainability.

Following the previous issues that analyzed the social and economic pillar, in the third issue will be analyzed the Environmental Pillar. More specifically the goals are Climate Action [SDG 13], Life Below Water [SDG 14], from 2015 to 2019 and finally Life on Land [SDG 15], from 2006 to 2018. The goal “Climate Action” will be examined through the indicator “Greenhouse gas emissions by source sector”, respectively the goal “Life on Land” through the “Soil sealing index” and finally the goal “Life below Water” through the indicator “Bathing sites with excellent water quality by locality”.

Per capita greenhouse gas emissions across the European Union in 2019 were estimated at 7,8 tonnes, ranging from 1,8 tonnes in Sweden to 19,7 tonnes in Luxembourg. In Greece in the same year the per capita greenhouse gas emissions were recorded at 8 tons, ranking it as the 13th most polluting state among the other Member States of the Union. The most significant reduction of per capita greenhouse gas emissions was presented by Germany, as the emissions during the period 2015 – 2019 decreased by 10,81%. Also, for all EU countries and for Greece, per capita greenhouse gas emissions decreased by 4,88% and 8,05% respectively between 2015 and 2019.

Regarding the “Soil sealing” index, the percentage for the EU, in 2018, was 1,76%. In the same year, this index ranged from 0,41% in Latvia to 17,08% in Malta. Greece’s percentage for this index was 1,03%, increased by 9,57% since 2006.

Finally, regarding the “Life in Water” index, in 2019, 88,6% of the bathing areas of the EU, were having excellent water quality. The percentage in Greece for the same year was 95,77%. Between EU countries with coastlines, Greece recorded the 6th highest percentage in this index. The index, in all EU countries, reached small fluctuations from 2015 to 2019.

In conclusion, Greece in these Sustainable Development Goals related to the Environment is close to the European Union average with small deviations, showing a gradual improvement over the years under review. The next issue, which will be published on February 23, will further analyze the social pillar.

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