Watch a new video series on sustainable development

Graphic: United Nations
Videos explore the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals through interviews with experts at the Inter-American Institute for Global Change Research.

The Inter-American Institute (IAI) for Global Change Research has released a video series to inspire new thinking and discussions around the United Nations’ 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). In the short clips, which are available online, leading researchers at the IAI talk about topics ranging from poverty to clean water and sustainable cities. The IAI acts as the Future Earth Regional Centre for Latin-America and the Caribbean, which facilitates sustainability research throughout the region.

The United Nations adopted the Sustainable Development Goals – which include “Ensure sustainable production and consumption patterns” and “Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts” – in 2015. They are benchmarks that nations can use as they work toward building a more sustainable planet. 

The recent series of videos from the IAI come as leaders in sustainability from around the world meet in New York for the UN’s High Level Political Forum for Sustainable Development. The forum seeks to follow-up on the adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals and lay groundwork for their implementation.

IAI is part of the Scientific and Technology Community Major Group attending the forum. The Major Group will “provide governments, policy makers and Society with knowledge on what is scientifically and technologically feasible and what technological tools we have available for achieving sustainable development.”

You can learn more about IAI’s involvement in the High Level Political Forum here

Speakers in the new video series are made up of top researchers in North, Central and South America who explore issues like tropical cyclones, ocean biodiversity and pediatric health. They include Sandra Díaz, of the Universidad Nacional de Córdoba, Argentina, and a member of Future Earth’s Science Committee. Interviews are in English and Spanish.

Watch the videos here

Here is a sample of what you’ll hear in these short interviews:

On “Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources” (Goal 14):

“Now we may get excited when see something that is alive in the ocean – when we get a good fish. But there are so many more species in the ocean. There are corals. There are sponges. There are microbes. There are phytoplankton. In truth, we don’t really even know how many species there are in the ocean... And yet our life on Earth depends on this diversity of life.”

—Frank Müller-Karger, University of South Florida

On “Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages” (Goal 3):

“We can be the first generation to proudly live in a world where no child has to die from diseases we know how to cure.”

—Michelle Grunauer, Universidad San Francisco de Quito, Ecuador

On “Sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, halt and reverse land degradation, halt biodiversity loss” (Goal 15):

“Now we have the historic opportunity to start thinking that poverty is not natural. That it is something deeply unfair that has to be changed, and the underpinning consumption model also has to be changed. And in this process, we can claim back essential human rights, including the right we all have to enjoy the fabric of life.”

—Sandra Díaz, Universidad Nacional de Córdoba, Argentina