In 2015, all United Nation member states agreed on 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) aimed at resolving the social, economic, and environmental challenges of today’s world. Now, what has that to do with your socks and my t-shirt? Well, the goals are addressing the root cause of poverty and pledge to leave no one behind the goals also put emphasis on the need to tackle climate change urgently and protect the environment through a shift to sustainable consumption and production. Facing widespread poverty, overpopulation and extremely vulnerable to climate change Bangladesh is also emerging as a potential new global economy as the worlds second largest garment exporter. If we really want to contribute to a more sustainable, intelligent and fair future and to support countries like Bangladesh in its transition to grow sustainably we need to create awareness about the consequences of our garment consumption patterns, the massive environmental impacts and lack of basic workers rights that is present as you read this.
Ida Peters Ginsborg holds a Master in Sociology from Copenhagen University, Denmark. From Ivy league Universities she is trained in environmental diplomacy practice and human rights. For more than five years Ida has worked with the social aspects of climate change and advocated for the inclusion of human rights both as an academic researcher and as an advisor. Having followed the negotiations of the SDGs in the United Nations Ida has great insight about the SDGs potentials and pitfalls, government and UN-agencies’ priorities.
The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are predicted to be one of this decade’s greatest opportunities to reduce environmental impacts of industries and promote human rights. If the fashion industry taps into the SDGs when creating their business models they will be able to change their manufacturing patterns so they become more sustainable. We want to encourage to higher standards are set for how much water and chemicals can be wasted in the rivers where people live, that infrastructure is improved so that production is prosperous and most importantly that garment workers rights are adhered to so that they can go to work without fearing their safety and health.