At the UN in September 2015, governments of 193 nations committed1 to move to a pathway of sustainability, adopting 17 Sustainable Development Goals2(SDGs) to be achieved by 2030. The vision of the SDGs is to end poverty, protect the planet, and ensure prosperity for all through participation and shared responsibility.

UN Sustainable Development Goals for 2030:

Goal 1: End poverty in all its forms everywhere

Goal 2: End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture

Goal 3: Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages

Goal 4: Ensure inclusive and quality education for all and promote lifelong learning

Goal 5: Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls

Goal 6: Ensure access to water and sanitation for all

Goal 7: Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all

Goal 8: Promote inclusive and sustainable economic growth, employment and decent work for all

Goal 9: Build resilient infrastructure, promote sustainable industrialization and foster innovation

Goal 10: Reduce inequality within and among countries

Goal 11: Make cities inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable

Goal 12: Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns

Goal 13: Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts

Goal 14: Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources

Goal 15: Sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, halt and reverse land degradation, halt biodiversity loss

Goal 16: Promote just, peaceful and inclusive societies

Goal 17: Revitalize the global partnership for sustainable development

As the authors of ‘One-World Chemistry’ have argued, chemistry’s capacity for innovation and ability to serve as the basis of a wide range of technologies mean that it can make a pivotal contribution to meeting the SDGs.3,4 The chemical sciences can be drivers for poverty reduction and inclusive, sustainable economic growth and industrialization (Goals 1,8,9). They can help reduce inequalities and make urban environments resilient and sustainable (Goals 10,11) and help avert and mitigate climate change and its impacts. They canassist in addressing environmental damage to air, sea and land (Goals 13,14,15), furnishing new agricultural and pharmaceutical processes and products (Goals 2,3) and developing more efficient and more sustainable processes for providing clean water, sanitation, energy and sustainable production (Goals 6,7,12).

The chemical sciences can play a role in the delivery of quality education and lifelong learning that is based in gender equality and empowerment (Goal 4); assist in countering military uses of chemical warfare and promoting disarmament and the peaceful uses of technology (Goal 16); and across all these areas operate through global partnerships and alliances that work for collective benefit to the health, well-being and sustainable development of all people (Goal 17).