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SDG TAXONOMY

We believe that companies which contribute to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are capable of creating positive social and environmental impacts – and are also exposed to the drivers of future growth. We created the Hermes SDG Taxonomy to find investment opportunities directly connected to the goals by identifying impactful businesses poised to be the growth champions of tomorrow.

At their inception, the 17 SDGs were designed to appeal to the broadest audience possible rather than being a framework for sustainable investment. The Hermes SDG Taxonomy therefore seeks to prove clear links between the 169 targets within the SDGs and potential investments in a logical and transparent way. It is a living body of research, enabling us to highlight clear opportunities today and adapt our findings as new information comes to light.

Please find the Hermes SDG Taxonomy below. To start exploring, click on an SDG icon.

Back to the SDGs
1 No
poverty
SDG icon - No poverty
1.1
By 2030, eradicate extreme poverty for all people everywhere, currently measured as people living on less than $1.25 a day arrow
1.2
By 2030, reduce at least by half the proportion of men, women and children of all ages living in poverty in all its dimensions according to national definitions arrow
1.3
Implement nationally appropriate social protection systems and measures for all, including floors, and by 2030 achieve substantial coverage of the poor and the vulnerable arrow
1.4
By 2030, ensure that all men and women, in particular the poor and the vulnerable, have equal rights to economic resources, as well as access to basic services, ownership and control over land and other forms of property, inheritance, natural resources, appropriate new technology and financial services, including microfinance arrow

Product or service solution

Micro-lending

Theory of change

Issue - Only 27% of people aged 15 plus have formal savings, and 11% have formal borrowing, according to the World Bank. Financial account ownership is lower among young adults, those with less education, women and poorer adults.

Contribution - Micro-lending focuses on expanding access to banking services to previously unbanked populations. While evidence of impact is context-dependent, there seems to be positive impacts on household consumption and women's health.

Impact risks

Evidence risks

  • There is still academic debate on the evidence of positive impact from micro-lending on poverty reduction in some countries.

Execution risks

  • Excessively-high interest rates may undermine the impact of lending.
  • Aggressive bad debt collection practices may lead to negative social outcomes.
  • Lending to companies involved in controversial industries may create negative impacts.

Impact theme

Impact theme iconFinancial inclusion

Product or service solution

Mobile financial services in developing countries

Theory of change

Issue - Only 27% of people aged 15 plus have formal savings, and 11% have formal borrowing, according to the World Bank. Financial account ownership is lower among young adults, those with less education, women and poorer adults.

Contribution - Research in Kenya shows that M-Pesa (mobile phone based money transfer) users were able to fully absorb large negative income shocks (such as job loss, livestock death, harvest or business failure, or poor health) without any reduction in household income, whereas statistically-comparable non-users saw consumption fall on average 7%.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Privacy and data security risk may materialise if not addressed with suitable policies and processes.
  • Lack of regulation by financial regulators may induce business behaviour issues.
  • Excessive transaction fees would reduce affordability.

Impact theme

Impact theme iconFinancial inclusion

Product or service solution

Affordable housing

Theory of change

Issue - Affordable housing is usually defined as households who can afford to pay using no more than 30% of income. The number of low-income urban households affected today by lack of access is 330m, which could grow to 440m by 2025, according to McKinsey. The lack of affordable housing has many negative effects. Recruitment and retention problems can particularly affect lower-paid employees, such as key workers, with implications for the delivery of essential public services. High house prices can lead to longer commutes and increased congestion, which can have a negative impact on quality of life, with long-term implications for economic growth and sustainability.

Contribution - Loans targeted at low-income groups can help accelerate access to property ownership at an affordable cost. Affordable housing can also be offered through rental models, making it accessible at a reasonable monthly rate without the need for upfront capital.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Excessively-high interest rates for buying properties, or excessively-high rents may undermine the impact of lending.
  • Aggressive bad debt collection practices may lead to negative social outcomes.
  • Lending to companies involved in controversial industries may create negative impacts.

Impact theme

Impact theme iconFinancial inclusion

1.5
By 2030, build the resilience of the poor and those in vulnerable situations and reduce their exposure and vulnerability to climate-related extreme events and other economic, social and environmental shocks and disasters arrow

Product or service solution

Micro-irrigation

Theory of change

Issue - The majority of the world's poor work in small-scale agriculture. Of the 75% of the worldÕs poor that live in rural areas, 80% directly or indirectly depend on agriculture as their main source of income and employment according to the International Finance Corporation (IFC). Agriculture contributes 4.6% of global GDP and provides work to 27% of the labour force.

Contribution - Micro-irrigation substantially increases agricultural productivity and therefore farmers' income, by between 30-100%, according to the World Bank.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Use of fossil-fuel based plastics in pipes
  • Use of irrigation equipment to use aquifers beyond their natural renewal rate

Impact theme

Impact theme iconFood security

1.A
Ensure significant mobilization of resources from a variety of sources, including through enhanced development cooperation, in order to provide adequate and predictable means for developing countries, in particular least developed countries, to implement programmes and policies to end poverty in all its dimensions arrow

Directly investable

1.B
Create sound policy frameworks at the national, regional and international levels, based on pro-poor and gender-sensitive development strategies, to support accelerated investment in poverty eradication actions arrow

Directly investable

arrow Back to the SDGs
2 Zero
hunger
SDG icon - No poverty
2.1
By 2030, end hunger and ensure access by all people, in particular the poor and people in vulnerable situations, including infants, to safe, nutritious and sufficient food all year round arrow

Product or service solution

Access to consumer staples

Theory of change

Issue - The proportion of undernourished people worldwide declined from 15% in 2000-2002 to 11% in 2014-2016. Yet about 793m people are still undernourished globally. Food poverty touches many developing countries, but also the lower income groups in developed countries.

Contribution - Companies can help make safe and nutritious food cheaper and more widely-available across geographies, reducing the relative weight of spending on basic staples within a total household budget. While the lowest-income countries spend more than half of the household budget on food, this share drops to less than 20% for higher-income countries.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Poor nutritional quality.
  • Pressure on farmers to keep costs down.
  • Environmental impact of intensive farming.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Food security

2.2
By 2030, end all forms of malnutrition, including achieving, by 2025, the internationally agreed targets on stunting and wasting in children under 5 years of age, and address the nutritional needs of adolescent girls, pregnant and lactating women and older persons arrow

Directly investable

2.3
By 2030, double the agricultural productivity and incomes of small-scale food producers, in particular women, indigenous peoples, family farmers, pastoralists and fishers, including through secure and equal access to land, other productive resources and inputs, knowledge, financial services, markets and opportunities for value addition and non-farm employment arrow

Product or service solution

Smart irrigation

Theory of change

Issue - The majority of the world's poor work in small-scale agriculture. Of the 75% of the worldÕs poor that live in rural areas, 80% directly or indirectly depend on agriculture as their main source of income and employment, according to the International Finance Corporation (IFC). Agriculture contributes 4.6% of global GDP and provides work to 27% of the labour force.

Contribution - Micro-irrigation substantially increases agricultural productivity and therefore farmers' income, by between 30-100%, according the the World Bank. Micro-irrigation reduces reliance on seasonal rainfall and weather-related shocks.

Impact risks

Contribution risks

  • Use of fossil-fuel based plastics in pipes.
  • Use of irrigation equipment may extract from aquifers beyond their natural renewal rate.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Food security

Product or service solution

Micro-lending

Theory of change

Issue - Only 27% of people aged 15 plus have formal savings, and 11% have formal borrowing, according to the World Bank. Financial account ownership is lower among young adults, those with less education, women and poorer adults.

Contribution - Micro-lending focuses on expanding access to banking services to previously unbanked populations. While evidence of impact is context-dependent, there seems to be positive impacts on household consumption and women's health.

Impact risks

Evidence risks

  • There is still academic debate on the evidence linking micro-lending to poverty-reduction in some countries.

Execution risks

  • Excessively-high interest rates may undermine the impact of lending.
  • Aggressive bad debt collection practices may lead to negative social outcomes.
  • Lending to companies involved in controversial industries may create negative impacts.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Financial inclusion

2.4
By 2030, ensure sustainable food production systems and implement resilient agricultural practices that increase productivity and production, that help maintain ecosystems, that strengthen capacity for adaptation to climate change, extreme weather, drought, flooding and other disasters and that progressively improve land and soil quality arrow

Product or service solution

Organic food production

Theory of change

Issue - Agricultural production will need to increase by 70% to meet global demand in 2050, according to the OECD. But yield gains have been consistently declining over the last decades. Crop yields have been progressing at slightly more than 1% since the 1990s. At the same time, agriculture's environmental impact has been vast and needs to be addressed: land-use change, as well as nitrogen fertilisation is a major contributor to greenhouse gas emissions - the latter also contributing to deterioration in water quality. Ecosystem degradation is also leading to loss of biodiversity, especially as crops focus on a small number of species.

Contribution - Systematic reviews of academic studies show strong evidence that organic agriculture improves soil quality, biodiversity, and some evidence that it also improves water quality, reduces greenhouse gas emissions and reduces farmers' pesticide exposure.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Execution risks

  • Food safety issues with food-borne disease.

Evidence risks

  • Lack of conclusive evidence regarding health benefits of organic v non-organic food.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Food security

Product or service solution

Organic food retail

Theory of change

Issue - Agricultural production will need to increase by 70% to meet global demand in 2050, according to the OECD. But yield gains have been consistently declining over recent decades. Crop yields have been progressing at slightly more than 1% since the 1990s. At the same time, agriculture's environmental impact has been vast and needs to be addressed; land-use change, as well as nitrogen fertilisation is a major contributor to greenhouse gas emissions - the latter also contributing to deterioration in water quality. Ecosystem degradations is also leading to loss of biodiversity, especially as crops focus on a small number of species.

Contribution - Systematic reviews of academic studies show strong evidence that organic agriculture improves soil quality, biodiversity, and some evidence that it also improves water quality, reduces greenhouse gas emissions and reduces farmers' pesticide exposure.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Execution risks

  • Food safety issues with food-borne disease.

Evidence risks

  • Lack of conclusive evidence regarding health benefits of organic vs non-organic food.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Food security

Product or service solution

Precision agriculture

Theory of change

Issue - Agricultural production will need to increase by 70% to meet global demand in 2050, according to the OECD. But yield gains have been consistently declining over the recent decades. Crop yields have been progressing at slightly more than 1% since the 1990s. Technology adoption is very low in agriculture, leading to low productivity gains. Farmers typically favour 'tried-and-tested' techniques.

Contribution - Research reports indicate that there could be an 18% crop yield increase thanks to precision fertiliser application, 13% with precision planting, 13% with compaction reduction via fleets of smaller tractors, 4% with precision spraying (Goldman Sachs). This means that less land and chemicals would be required to produce the same amount of food.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability for farmers would reduce the breadth of positive impacts.

Contribution risks

  • Loss of biodiversity in intensive farming has historically been a major issue for ecosystems.
  • Groundwater contamination in intensive farming has historically been a major issue for ecosystems.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Food security

Product or service solution

Plant-based foods

Theory of change

Issue - Population-growth places increasing pressure on scarce natural resources. Agriculture accounts for 92% of the freshwater footprint of humanity; almost one third relates to animal products. Mekonnen and Hoekstra (2012) show that animal products have a large water footprint relative to crop products.

More than 80% of farmland is used for livestock but it produces just 18% of food calories (Poore & Nemecek, Science Journal 2018).

Contribution - There is strong evidence supporting plant-based diets as a sustainable solution to helping to reduce food shortages, land-degradation and fresh water intake (Webber, 2017).

The lower land-use footprint also means that fewer chemicals are necessary to produce the same amount of protein, thus reducing the risk of contamination of rivers etc.

Execution risks

  • Negative externalities of intensive crop farming.
  • There are potential nutritional deficiencies from strict vegan diets.

Contribution risks

  • Some forms of animal farming, such as silvopasture and managed grazing, can have positive environmental impacts including climate change mitigation.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Food security

Product or service solution

Sustainable aquaculture

Theory of change

Issue - Animal farming is a highly-inefficient way of creating proteins for human consumption. Beef production in particular requires 10-times more land use and greenhouse gas emissions than farmed fish.

Contribution - According to the Food and Agriculture Organisation, sustainable aquaculture is among the most sustainable of animal protein production systems. It does not use land, and has a much lower carbon footprint than any kind of animal protein. Sustainable aquaculture does not use antibiotics and other chemicals that could be harmful to the marine ecosystem.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Disease e.g. sealice infection is a major risk.

Contribution risks

  • Pollution of oceans from feed and other chemicals, as well as biosecurity, are an issue.
  • Excessive use of antibiotics leading to antimicrobial resistance has been common.
  • Contribution to overfishing if wild stock of smaller fish are used as feed.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Food security

Product or service solution

Sustainable food ingredients

Theory of change

Issue - Excessive practices in food processing are linked to negative health effects such as the over-use of sugar contributing to diabetes, or artificial sweeteners with potentially carcinogenic effects, etc.

Contribution - Food products can be reformulated into healthier versions that contain, for instance, less sugar or more nutritious elements. The addition of iodine in salt, for example, has been a major contributor to reducing iodine deficiency.

Impact risks

Contribution risks

  • Potential side effects from ingredient formulations.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Food security

2.5
By 2020, maintain the genetic diversity of seeds, cultivated plants and farmed and domesticated animals and their related wild species, including through soundly managed and diversified seed and plant banks at the national, regional and international levels, and promote access to and fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from the utilization of genetic resources and associated traditional knowledge, as internationally agreed arrow

Directly investable

2.A
Increase investment, including through enhanced international cooperation, in rural infrastructure, agricultural research and extension services, technology development and plant and livestock gene banks in order to enhance agricultural productive capacity in developing countries, in particular least developed countries arrow

Directly investable

2.B
Correct and prevent trade restrictions and distortions in world agricultural markets, including through the parallel elimination of all forms of agricultural export subsidies and all export measures with equivalent effect, in accordance with the mandate of the Doha Development Round arrow

Directly investable

arrow Back to the SDGs
3 Good health
and well-being
SDG icon - No poverty
3.1
By 2030, reduce the global maternal mortality ratio to less than 70 per 100,000 live births arrow

Product or service solution

Hospitals in developing countries

Theory of change

Issue - In 2010, 800m people spent over 10% of their household budget on healthcare and 97m were pushed into extreme poverty by health spending (World Health Organisation).

In 2016 alone, 7,000 newborn babies died every day. Newborn deaths made up 46% of all child deaths, an increase from 41% in 2000. Children in the poorest households are nearly twice as likely to die before the age of five than those from the richest. Most of these deaths are entirely preventable (UNICEF).

Contribution - Better-staffed health systems are linked with improved health outcomes. Better access to healthcare is closely correlated with higher scores in the Human Development Index.

Prematurity, complications during labour and birth, and infections like sepsis, pneumonia, tetanus and diarrhoea are among the leading causes of death Ð all of which can be treated or prevented with simple, affordable solutions (UNICEF).

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Lack of skilled staff may limit the ability to deliver services.
  • Working conditions of healthcare professionals can be an issue.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Health & Well-being

3.2
By 2030, end preventable deaths of newborns and children under 5 years of age, with all countries aiming to reduce neonatal mortality to at least as low as 12 per 1,000 live births and under-5 mortality to at least as low as 25 per 1,000 live births arrow

Product or service solution

Hospitals in developing countries

Theory of change

Issue - In 2010, 800m people spent over 10% of their household budget on healthcare, and 97m were pushed into extreme poverty by health spending (World Health Organisation).

In 2016 alone, 7,000 newborn babies died every day. Newborn deaths made up 46% of all child deaths, an increase from 41% in 2000. Children in the poorest households are nearly twice as likely to die before the age of five than those from the richest. Most of these deaths are entirely preventable (UNICEF).

Contribution - Better-staffed health systems are linked with improved health outcomes. Better access to healthcare is closely correlated with higher scores in the Human Development Index.

Prematurity, complications during labour and birth, and infections like sepsis, pneumonia, tetanus and diarrhoea are among the leading causes of death Ð all of which can be treated or prevented with simple, affordable solutions (UNICEF).

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Lack of skilled staff may limit the ability to deliver services.
  • Working conditions of healthcare professionals can be an issue.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Health & Well-being

3.3
By 2030, end the epidemics of AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria and neglected tropical diseases and combat hepatitis, water-borne diseases and other communicable diseases arrow

Product or service solution

AIDS medicine

Theory of change

Issue - HIV is the 14th largest cause of death globally, representing 1.9% of deaths and disproportionally affects low income countries (World Health Organisation).

Contribution - Most people who are treated for HIV take three or more drugs. This is called antiretroviral therapy (ART) or highly-active antiretroviral therapy (HAART). Combination therapy is the most effective treatment for HIV but it remains a therapeutic area in need of medical innovation. Life expectancy is getting better: between 1996 and 2010, life expectancy in 20-year-old patients starting ART increased by about nine years in women and 10 years in men.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Lack of skilled staff may limit the ability to deliver services.
  • Working conditions of healthcare professionals can be an issue.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Efficiency risks

  • Non-pharmaceutical interventions may be more cost-effective, especially in preventing disease.

Evidence risks

  • Medical evidence on the effectiveness of a drug may be disputed.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Health & Well-being

Product or service solution

Tropical disease medicine

Theory of change

Issue - Malaria is the 16th largest cause of death globally, representing 1.3% of deaths (World Health Organisation). Yet it is an under-researched and under-developed area. 16 out of 1,393 new chemical entities were approved for neglected and tropical diseases (NTDs) between 1975 and 1999 (~1%).

The WHO estimates that 1bn people are afflicted by NTDs.

Contribution - Many tropical diseases are not seeing the research attention that they deserve. The World Health Organisation has developed a list of neglected tropical disease as priority areas for research and development of treatments in those areas.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Evidence risks

  • Medical evidence on the effectiveness of a drug may be disputed.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Health & Well-being

Product or service solution

Vaccines providers

Theory of change

Issue - Infectious disease remains a major cause of avoidable mortality globally. This is even more so in developing countries. Communicable diseases represent nearly 20% of deaths worldwide and 30% of disability-adjusted life years (Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation).

Contribution - Because they are relatively inexpensive, and focus on prevention, vaccines are a highly cos- effective health intervention. The effect of vaccines in the history of medicine has been dramatic. For example, more than 15,000 Americans died from diphtheria in 1921 before there was a vaccine. Only two cases of diphtheria have been reported to the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention between 2004 and 2014. According to the World Health Organisation: "Vaccination has greatly reduced the burden of infectious diseases. Only clean water, also considered to be a basic human right, performs better".

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Lack of skilled staff may limit the ability to deliver services.
  • Working conditions of healthcare professionals can be an issue.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Efficiency risks

  • Non-pharmaceutical interventions may be more cost-effective, especially in preventing disease.

Evidence risks

  • Medical evidence on the effectiveness of a drug may be disputed.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Health & Well-being

Product or service solution

Food testing

Theory of change

Issue - Pathogens can be transmitted by food contaminated by infected persons. Food supply chains thus play an important role in spreading communicable diseases.

Contribution - Testing of food allows for the detection of pathogens and their removal, thus limiting the spread of a disease and decreasing its likely impact.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Use of chemicals that are unsafe for humans or the environment.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Health & Well-being

Product or service solution

Cleaning and hygiene products and services

Theory of change

Issue - While non-communicable diseases are making up an increasing share of disease burden worldwide, communicable diseases still represent a major source of health problems, with 20% of deaths and 30% of quality-adjusted life years liked to communicable disease.

Contribution - Cleaning and sanitation products and services help improve hygiene, removing pathogens that may otherwise contribute to the spread of communicable diseases.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Use of chemicals that are unsafe for humans or the environment.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Health & Well-being

3.4
By 2030, reduce by one third premature mortality from non-communicable diseases through prevention and treatment and promote mental health and well-being arrow

Product or service solution

Prevention, diagnosis & treatment for diabetes

Theory of change

Issue - "The number of people with Type 2 Diabetes has grown rapidly. Diabetes 2 is highly-correlated to obesity and physical inactivity. The International Diabetes Foundation estimates that between 2014 and 2035, the number of people living with diabetes globally will rise from 387m to 592m (a 53% increase), with the largest regional increases coming in Africa (109%) and 96% inMENA (Middle East and North Africa).

"People with Type 1 diabetes require insulin for survival Ð without insulin, even for a short time, these individuals may face life-threatening consequences. Yet an array of international and national barriers interact to hamper access to insulin, and many in low- and middle-income countries do not receive this essential treatment" (World Health Organisation, 2016).

Contribution - Current treatment of diabetes is still inadequate; good glucose regulation is difficult to achieve, and current drugs are linked to increased risk of cardiovascular disease and weight gains. Innovation in diabetes treatment shows early evidence of superior cardio-vascular, hypoglycemia and weight-loss outcomes.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Lack of skilled staff may limit the ability to deliver services.
  • Working conditions of healthcare professionals can be an issue.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Efficiency risks

  • Non-pharmaceutical interventions may be more cost-effective, especially in preventing disease.

Contribution risks

  • Medical side effects that are unexpected or worse than expected may undermine a medical intervention's effectiveness.

Evidence risks

  • Medical evidence on the effectiveness of a drug may be disputed.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Health & Well-being

Product or service solution

Prevention, diagnosis & treatment for cardiovascular disease

Theory of change

Issue - Cardiovascular disease is the largest cause of death in the OECD, representing 31% of deaths. It is also the largest cause of death globally, at 32% of the total (Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation).

Contribution - Raised blood pressure is a major risk factor for cerebrovascular disease, coronary heart disease, and cardiac and renal failure. Treating raised blood pressure has been associated with a 35Ð40% reduction in the risk of stroke and at least a 16% reduction in the risk of myocardial infarction. (World Health Organisation)

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Lack of skilled staff may limit the ability to deliver services.
  • Working conditions of healthcare professionals can be an issue.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Efficiency risks

  • Non-pharmaceutical interventions may be more cost-effective, especially in preventing disease.

Evidence risks

  • Medical evidence on the effectiveness of a drug may be disputed.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Health & Well-being

Product or service solution

Prevention, diagnosis & treatment for cancer

Theory of change

Issue - Cancer is the second-largest cause of death in the OECD, representing 26% of deaths. It is also the second-largest cause of death globally, at 17% of the total (Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation).

Contribution - There are three exciting new areas for the treatment of cancer:
- immunotherapy;
- gene-sequencing and editing (particularly liquid biopsy);
- more-targeted radiotherapy.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Lack of skilled staff may limit the ability to deliver services.
  • Working conditions of healthcare professionals can be an issue.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Contribution risks

  • Medical side effects that are unexpected or worse than expected may undermine a medical intervention's effectiveness.

Evidence risks

  • Medical evidence on the effectiveness of a drug may be disputed.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Health & Well-being

Product or service solution

Prevention, diagnosis & treatment of chronic respiratory diseases

Theory of change

Issue - Respiratory disease is the fourth-largest cause of death in the OECD, representing 9.6% of deaths. It is also the third cause of death globally, at 13% of the total. Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, asthma, acute lower respiratory tract infections, tuberculosis and lung cancer are among the most-common causes of severe illness and death worldwide. Lower respiratory tract infection kills more people than (HIV), tuberculosis and malaria combined (Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation).

Contribution - More than 90% of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease deaths occur in low-income and middle-income countries. A large part could be prevented with access to adequate treatment.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Lack of skilled staff may limit the ability to deliver services.
  • Working conditions of healthcare professionals can be an issue.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Contribution risks

  • Medical side effects that are unexpected or worse than expected may undermine a medical intervention's effectiveness.

Evidence risks

  • Medical evidence on the effectiveness of a drug may be disputed.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Health & Well-being

Product or service solution

Healthy food producers

Theory of change

Issue - 39% of adults aged 18 years and over were overweight in 2016, and 13% were obese. The worldwide prevalence of obesity nearly tripled between 1975 and 2016. Most of the world's population live in countries where obesity kills more people than being underweight does. Raised body mass index is a major risk factor for noncommunicable diseases such as cardiovascular diseases and some cancers (World Health Organisation).

Contribution - Obesity and related noncommunicable diseases are largely preventable. As Kumanyika et al reported in the International Journal of Obesity: "Genes are important in determining a personÕs susceptibility to weight gain, but societal changes are driving the epidemic; the rapid rises in obesity rates around theworld have occurred in too short a time for there to have been any evolutionary genetic changes within populations". Supportive environments and communities are fundamental in shaping peopleÕs choices, by making the choice of healthier foods and regular physical activity the easiest.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Poor labour and safety practices due to reliance of low-skilled labour.

Evidence risks

  • Challenges in implementing effective weight-reduction programmes.

External risks

  • Obesity is a complex, multi-dimensional issue, so interventions in one area may be undermined by lack of progress in other areas.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Health & Well-being

Product or service solution

Sports equipment and services

Theory of change

Issue - 39% of adults aged 18 years and over were overweight in 2016, and 13% were obese. The worldwide prevalence of obesity nearly tripled between 1975 and 2016. Most of the world's population live in countries where obesity kills more people than being underweight does. Raised body mass index is a major risk factor for noncommunicable diseases such as cardiovascular diseases and some cancers (World Health Organisation).

Contribution - Physical activity has significant health benefits and contributes to prevent noncommunicable diseases. Globally, one in four adults is not active enough. According to McKinney et all in British Columbia Medical Journal, 2016: "High levels of physical activity and cardiorespiratory fitness are associated with lower all-cause and cardiovascular mortality. Furthermore, physical activity can reduce the development of chronic diseases such as hypertension, diabetes, stroke, and cancer. Additionally, physical activity can promote healthy cognitive and psychosocial function."

Impact risks

Evidence risks

  • While physical activity is associated with a lot of positive health outcomes, there is limited evidence that it helps with weight reduction and obesity.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Health & Well-being

Product or service solution

Mental health medicine/services

Theory of change

Issue - According to estimates from the World Health Organisation (WHO), over 800,000 people die by suicide every year. Yet suicides are preventable with timely, evidence-based interventions. In high-income countries, mental disorders are present in up to 90% of people who die by suicide. Alcohol and other substance use disorders contribute to 25?50% of all suicides, and suicide risk is further increased if alcohol or substance use is co-morbid with other psychiatric disorders.

Contribution - Quality mental healthcare centres and products dealing with substance use disorders, while not the only solution to mental health disorders, can play an important role in treatment.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Lack of skilled staff may limit the ability to deliver services.
  • Working conditions of healthcare professionals can be an issue.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Health & Well-being

3.5
Strengthen the prevention and treatment of substance abuse, including narcotic drug abuse and harmful use of alcohol arrow

Product or service solution

Mental health medicine/services

Theory of change

Issue - According to estimates from the World Health Organisation (WHO), over 800,000 people die by suicide every year. Yet suicides are preventable with timely, evidence-based interventions. In high-income countries, mental disorders are present in up to 90% of people who die by suicide. Alcohol and other substance use disorders contribute to 25?50% of all suicides, and suicide risk is further increased if alcohol or substance use is co-morbid with other psychiatric disorders.

Contribution - Quality mental healthcare centres and products dealing with substance use disorders, while not the only solution to mental health disorders, can play an important role in treatment.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Lack of skilled staff may limit the ability to deliver services.
  • Working conditions of healthcare professionals can be an issue.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Health & Well-being

3.6
By 2020, halve the number of global deaths and injuries from road traffic accidents arrow

Product or service solution

Car safety equipment

Theory of change

Issue - Road accidents are the ninth source of death globally, representing 2.2% of deaths, or 1.3m cases every year (Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation). In the UK, 94% of car accidents are thought to be caused by human error (Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents).

Contribution - Certain technological innovations can have a dramatic effect on safety. Seat belts, for instance, have dramatically reduced the risk of death and serious injury. Among drivers and front-seat passengers, seat belts reduce the risk of death by 45%, and cut the risk of serious injury by 50% (Centre for Disease Control and Prevention).

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Poor product quality leading to product failure may undermine safety.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Future mobility

Product or service solution

Vehicle safety

Theory of change

Issue - Road accidents are the ninth source of death globally, representing 2.2% of deaths, or 1.3m cases every year (Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation). In the UK, 94% of car accidents are thought to be caused by human error (Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents).

Contribution - Active safety products (as opposed to passive safety products such as seat belts, brakes etc) are gaining critical importance as cars become more autonomous. As cars transition along the automated vehicle spectrum, the responsibility for road safety will shift from the human driver towards full systems responsibility. The quality of sensors (such as cameras and radars) as well as underlying software will be become key to road safety. Autonomous vehicles can also play a role; so far pilot tests have shown that autonomous vehicles have a much better safety performance than human-driven vehicles.

Impact risks

External risks

  • Data security and privacy issues may occur especially as vehicles get more digitally connected.

Execution risks

  • Poor product quality leading to product failure may undermine safety.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Future mobility

3.7
By 2030, ensure universal access to sexual and reproductive health-care services, including for family planning, information and education, and the integration of reproductive health into national strategies and programmes arrow

Product or service solution

Contraceptives

Theory of change

Issue - Worldwide in 2017, only 63% of women aged 15-49 were using some form of contraception. At least one in 10 married or in-union women in most regions of the world have an unmet need for family planning; that is to say, they want to stop or delay childbearing but are not using any method of contraception to prevent pregnancy - 214m women of reproductive age in developing countries who want to avoid pregnancy are not using a modern contraceptive method (UN).

Contribution - According to the World Health Organisation: "A womanÕs ability to choose if and when to become pregnant has a direct impact on her health and well-being. Family planning allows spacing of pregnancies and can delay pregnancies in young women at increased risk of health problems and death from early childbearing. It prevents unintended pregnancies, including those of older women who face increased risks related to pregnancy. Family planning enables women who wish to limit the size of their families to do so. Evidence suggests that women who have more than four children are at increased risk of maternal mortality." Also, family planning and contraception reduce the need for abortion, which can be unsafe due to lack of service provision in some countries.

Impact risks

Contribution risks

  • Medical side effects that are unexpected or worse than expected may undermine a medical intervention's effectiveness.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Evidence risks

  • Medical evidence on the effectiveness of a drug may be disputed.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Health & Well-being

3.8
Achieve universal health coverage, including financial risk protection, access to quality essential health-care services and access to safe, effective, quality and affordable essential medicines and vaccines for all arrow

Product or service solution

Affordable private health insurance

Theory of change

Issue - In 2010, 800m people spent over 10% of their household budget on healthcare, and 97m were pushed into extreme poverty by health spending (World Bank).

Contribution - Public financing plays a dominant role in expanding financial coverage. The more pressing challenge is how to deliver universal healthcare (UHC) in practice, expanding coverage of high-quality services and developing capacity throughout health systems. The financing gap for UHC is substantial. Chatham House estimates that a basic healthcare system costs $86 per capita per year.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Lack of skilled staff may limit the ability to deliver services.
  • Working conditions of healthcare professionals can be an issue.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Financial inclusion

Product or service solution

Healthcare Information Technology

Theory of change

Issue - Healthcare systems in developed countries are under increasing financial pressure due to rising health costs as a percentage of GDP. At the same time, in developing countries a large part of health spending is out of pocket, which decreases access and reinforces inequalities.

Contribution - Better collection, management and analysis of health data has the potential to improve the cost-effectiveness of healthcare delivery.

Impact risks

External risks

  • Data security and privacy issues may occur especially as vehicles become more digitally connected.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Health & Well-being

Product or service solution

Telemedicine

Theory of change

Issue - There is a global shortage of medical staff. Health systems are also under increasing financial pressure.

Contribution - Telemedicine can help broaden access to medical staff to a wider population, regardless of location. It can also be more cost-effective than visits to physical health centres.

Impact risks

External risks

  • Data security and privacy issues may occur especially as vehicles become more digitally connected.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Health & Well-being

Product or service solution

Hospitals in developing countries

Theory of change

Issue - "In 2010, 800m people spent over 10% of their household budget on healthcare, and 97m were pushed into extreme poverty by health spending" (World Health Organisation).

"In 2016 alone, 7,000 newborn babies died every day. Newborn deaths made up 46% of all child deaths, an increase from 41% in 2000. Children in the poorest households are nearly twice as likely to die before the age of five than those from the richest. Most of these deaths are entirely preventable" (UNICEF).

Contribution - Better-staffed health systems are linked with improved health outcomes. Better access to healthcare is closely correlated with higher scores in the Human Development Index.

"Prematurity, complications during labour and birth, and infections like sepsis, pneumonia, tetanus and diarrhoea are among the leading causes of death Ð all of which can be treated or prevented with simple, affordable solution" (UNICEF).

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Lack of skilled staff may limit the ability to deliver services.
  • Working conditions of healthcare professionals can be an issue.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Health & Well-being

Product or service solution

Vaccine providers

Theory of change

Issue - Infectious disease remains a major cause of avoidable mortality globally. This is even more prevalent in developing countries. Infectious disease represent nearly 30% of deaths worldwide (Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation).

Contribution - Because they are relatively inexpensive, and focus on prevention, vaccines are a highly cost-effective health intervention. Their effect in the history of medicine have been dramatic. For example, more than 15,000 Americans died from diphtheria in 1921 before there was a vaccine. Only two cases of diphtheria have been reported to the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention between 2004 and 2014. According to the World Health Organisation: "Vaccination has greatly reduced the burden of infectious diseases. Only clean water, also considered to be a basic human right, performs better."

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Lack of skilled staff may limit the ability to deliver services.
  • Working conditions of healthcare professionals can be an issue.
  • Biological drugs are harder to produce than traditional drugs, and thus may encounter product safety issues.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Contribution risks

  • Medical side effects that are unexpected or worse than expected may undermine a medical intervention's effectiveness.

Evidence risks

  • Medical evidence on the effectiveness of a drug may be disputed.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Health & Well-being

Product or service solution

Generic drug providers

Theory of change

Issue - Healthcare systems in developed countries are under increasing financial pressure due to rising health costs as a percentage of GDP. At the same time, in developing countries a large part of health spending is out of pocket, which decreases access and reinforces inequalities.

Contribution - In the UK, according to the Kings Fund, "increasing generic prescribing has saved the NHS around £7.1bn since 1976 and allowed 490m more items to be prescribed without an increase in total spending".

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Biological drugs are harder to produce than traditional drugs, and thus may encounter product safety issues.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Contribution risks

  • Medical side effects that are unexpected or worse than expected may undermine a medical intervention's effectiveness.

Evidence risks

  • Medical evidence on the effectiveness of a drug may be disputed.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Health & Well-being

Product or service solution

Biosimilar drug providers

Theory of change

Issue - Healthcare systems in developed countries are under increasing financial pressure due to rising health costs as a percentage of GDP. At the same time, in developing countries a large part of health spending is out of pocket, which decreases access and reinforces inequalities.

Contribution - Similar to generics, although to a lesser extent, increased prescription of biosimilars can help reduce healthcare costs while maintaining standards of care.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Lack of skilled staff may limit the ability to deliver services.
  • Working conditions of healthcare professionals can be an issue.
  • Biological drugs are harder to produce than traditional drugs, and thus may encounter product safety issues.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Contribution risks

  • Medical side effects that are unexpected or worse than expected may undermine a medical intervention's effectiveness.

Evidence risks

  • Medical evidence on the effectiveness of a drug may be disputed

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Health & Well-being

3.9
By 2030, substantially reduce the number of deaths and illnesses from hazardous chemicals and air, water and soil pollution and contamination arrow

Product or service solution

Environmental services

Theory of change

Issue - Local governments and municipalities are often faced with multiple, complex environmental issues to tackle: local pollution, road congestion, waste management, etc. Companies, too, may not have the internal expertise and ability to analyse and address environmental issues.

Contribution - Companies with strong expertise in analysing and acting on environmental issues can help public authorities and private companies find better solutions to manage their environmental impacts.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Poor business behaviour in interacting with public authorities may lead to negative system impacts.

Evidence risks

  • It may be hard to assess and measure the contribution of environmental services due to their wide-ranging nature.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Circular economy

Product or service solution

Water treatment

Theory of change

Issue - Only 71% of people have access to safely-managed water. In low- and middle-income countries, 38% of healthcare facilities lack an improved water source, 19% do not have improved sanitation, and 35% lack water and soap for handwashing (World Health Organisation).

Contribution - Water treatment is one of the most straightforward, cost-effective ways of improving public health, because it greatly decreases the risk of communicable diseases. It also helps improve re-use of water, which reduces the burden on aquifers.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • The environmental impact of chemicals used in water treatment may be uncertain.

Contribution risks

  • Greenhouse gas emissions relating to energy use in water treatment are substantial and contribute to climate change.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Circular economy

Product or service solution

Organic food production

Theory of change

Issue - "Agricultural production will need to increase by 70% to meet global demand in 2050, according to the OECD. At the same time, agriculture's use of chemicals may lead to negative health effects. According to Nicolopoulou-Stamati (2016), the numerous negative health effects that have been associated with chemical pesticides include dermatological, gastrointestinal, neurological, carcinogenic, respiratory, reproductive, and endocrine effects. Furthermore, high occupational, accidental, or intentional exposure to pesticides can result in hospitalization and death.

Contribution - Systematic reviews of academic studies provide strong evidence that organic agriculture improves soil quality, biodiversity, and some evidence that it also improves water quality, reduces greenhouse gas emissions and reduces farmers' pesticide exposure.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Execution risks

  • Food safety issues with food-borne disease.

Evidence risks

  • Lack of conclusive evidence regarding health benefits of organic v non-organic food.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Circular economy

Product or service solution

Waste management

Theory of change

Issue - Growing population, rising standards of living, industrialisation, and production and consumption of new products are acting in concert to generate greater quantities of solid wastes. And this in turn is creating serious problems for management and proper disposal of waste. Without waste management there is an increased likelihood of disease spreading, which has a negative impact on people's health.

Contribution - Waste management ensures recycling and re-use are possible, supporting a circular economy and hazardous materials can be dealt with appropriately, reducing the negative impact on population health from the spread of disease.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of geographical coverage may limit access and impact.

Contribution risks

  • Some waste management process, like waste-to-energy, have high carbon intensity.
  • Disposal of non recyclable material may be problematic if not handled proprely.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Circular economy

3.A
Strengthen the implementation of the World Health Organization Framework Convention on Tobacco Control in all countries, as appropriate arrow

Directly investable

3.B
Support the research and development of vaccines and medicines for the communicable and non-communicable diseases that primarily affect developing countries, provide access to affordable essential medicines and vaccines, in accordance with the Doha Declaration on the TRIPS Agreement and Public Health, which affirms the right of developing countries to use to the full the provisions in the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights regarding flexibilities to protect public health, and, in particular, provide access to medicines for all arrow

Directly investable

3.C
Substantially increase health financing and the recruitment, development, training and retention of the health workforce in developing countries, especially in least developed countries and small island developing States arrow

Directly investable

3.D
Strengthen the capacity of all countries, in particular developing countries, for early warning, risk reduction and management of national and global health risks arrow

Directly investable

arrow Back to the SDGs
4 Quality
education
SDG icon - No poverty
4.1
By 2030, ensure that all girls and boys complete free, equitable and quality primary and secondary education leading to relevant and effective learning outcomes arrow

Product or service solution

Affordable private primary education providers

Theory of change

Issue - Half of countries failed to meet the UN Millenium Development Goals of universal primary education by 2015. Only 12 out of 157 countries are currently on track to meet the 2030 Sustainable Development Goal on inclusive and equitable education; 10% of people globally have no education, not even primary (UN).

Contribution - The World Bank estimates that globally, each year of additional schooling is associated with a 9% increase in wages for men, and 11% for women. It even has positive impacts on health, showing a lower probability of chronic health conditions, and longer life expectancy. But quality is important. The World Bank also shows that in a country like South Africa, learning-adjusted schooling is almost half that of the actual official years, due to poor learning outcomes.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Lack of skilled staff may limit the ability to deliver services.
  • Appropriate education outcomes - for instance, as measured by the OECD's Programme for International Student Assessment (or PISA) - may not be achieved.
  • Privacy and data security risk may materialise if not addressed with suitable policies and processes.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Education

4.2
By 2030, ensure that all girls and boys have access to quality early childhood development, care and pre-primary education so that they are ready for primary education arrow

Product or service solution

Private childcare services

Theory of change

Issue - Access to childcare remains low. Within the OECD, only about 35% of children aged up to two years participate in formal childcare services.

Contribution - Wider provision of childcare is linked to a better-skilled, more employable and more productive population, and less waste of the human potential of women and underprivileged groups. Early-years childcare can lead to real economic returns to investments from 7% to 13% in better skills development, higher employment and other benefits. Affordability is important though - in the OECD, parents earning the average wage spend 12% of their family's net income on childcare.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Lack of skilled staff may limit the ability to deliver services.
  • Appropriate education outcomes - for instance, as measured by the OECD's Programme for International Student Assessment (or PISA) - may not be achieved.
  • Privacy and data security risk may materialise if not addressed with suitable policies and processes.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Education

4.3
By 2030, ensure equal access for all women and men to affordable and quality technical, vocational and tertiary education, including university arrow

Product or service solution

Educational publishers

Theory of change

Issue - Economies are faced with the growing challenge of integrating people in the workforce at a time when new technologies may make some of those jobs disappear - and others emerge. According to McKinsey: "Unemployment and underemployment are high around the world. In the United States and the 15 core European Union countries, there are 285m adults who are not in the labour force - and at least 100m of them would like to work more. Some 30-45 % of the working-age population around the world is underutilized - that is, unemployed, inactive, or underemployed. This translates into some 850m people in the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, Japan, Brazil, China, and India alone."

Contribution - Publishing of quality educational materials may help broaden access to education beyond the boundaries of schools and/or universities. Higher levels of education are also associated with higher wages at the individual level and, at the macro level, better economic prospects.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Focus on publishing volumes may lead to a trade-off with quality and impact on educational outcomes.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Education

Product or service solution

Continuing education

Theory of change

Issue - Economies are faced with the growing challenge of integrating people in the workforce at a time when new technologies may make some of those jobs disappear - and others emerge. According to McKinsey: "Unemployment and underemployment are high around the world. In the United States and the 15 core European Union countries, there are 285m adults who are not in the labor force - and at least 100m of them would like to work more. Some 30-45 % of the working-age population around the world is underutilised - that is, unemployed, inactive, or underemployed. This translates into some 850m people in the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, Japan, Brazil, China, and India alone."

Contribution - Availability of continuing education programmes can help improve skills and increase individuals' ability to adapt to economic changes leading to changes in job structures. Higher levels of education are also associated with higher wages at the individual level and, at the macro level, better economic prospects.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Lack of skilled staff may limit the ability to deliver services.
  • Appropriate education outcomes - for instance, as measured by the OECD's Programme for International Student Assessment (or PISA) - may not be achieved.
  • Privacy and data security risk may materialise if not addressed with suitable policies and processes.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Education

Product or service solution

Post-secondary education providers

Theory of change

Issue - There will be a shortfall in the number of workers educated to Ôcollege levelÕ or beyond across the world of 38-40m by 2030 (McKinsey Global Institute, 2012).

Contribution - Participation in post-secondary education leads to better health, greater civic participation and increased happiness (Global Access to Postsecondary Education).

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Lack of skilled staff may limit the ability to deliver services.
  • Appropriate education outcomes - for instance, as measured by the OECD's Programme for International Student Assessment (or PISA) - may not be achieved.
  • Privacy and data security risk may materialise if not addressed with suitable policies and processes.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Education

4.4
By 2030, substantially increase the number of youth and adults who have relevant skills, including technical and vocational skills, for employment, decent jobs and entrepreneurship arrow
4.5
By 2030, eliminate gender disparities in education and ensure equal access to all levels of education and vocational training for the vulnerable, including persons with disabilities, indigenous peoples and children in vulnerable situations arrow

Directly investable

4.6
By 2030, ensure that all youth and a substantial proportion of adults, both men and women, achieve literacy and numeracy arrow

Product or service solution

Affordable private primary education providers

Theory of change

Issue - Half of countries failed to meet the UN Millenium Development Goals of universal primary education by 2015. Only 12 out of 157 countries are currently on track to meet the 2030 Sustainable Development Goal on inclusive and equitable education; 10% of people globally have no education, not even primary. (UN)

Contribution - The World Bank estimates that globally, each year of additional schooling is associated with a 9% increase in wages for men, and 11% for women. It even has positive impacts on health, showing a lower probability of chronic health conditions, and longer life expectancy. But quality is important. The World Bank also shows that in a country like South Africa, learning-adjusted schooling is almost half that of the actual official years, due to poor learning outcomes.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Lack of skilled staff may limit the ability to deliver services.
  • Appropriate education outcomes - for instance, as measured by the OECD's Programme for International Student Assessment (or PISA) - may not be achieved.
  • Privacy and data security risk may materialise if not addressed with suitable policies and processes.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Education

4.7
By 2030, ensure that all learners acquire the knowledge and skills needed to promote sustainable development, including, among others, through education for sustainable development and sustainable lifestyles, human rights, gender equality, promotion of a culture of peace and non-violence, global citizenship and appreciation of cultural diversity and of cultureÕs contribution to sustainable development arrow

Directly investable

4.A
Build and upgrade education facilities that are child, disability and gender sensitive and provide safe, non-violent, inclusive and effective learning environments for all arrow

Directly investable

4.B
By 2020, substantially expand globally the number of scholarships available to developing countries, in particular least developed countries, small island developing States and African countries, for enrolment in higher education, including vocational training and information and communications technology, technical, engineering and scientific programmes, in developed countries and other developing countries arrow

Directly investable

4.C
By 2030, substantially increase the supply of qualified teachers, including through international cooperation for teacher training in developing countries, especially least developed countries and small island developing States arrow

Directly investable

arrow Back to the SDGs
5 Gender
equality
SDG icon - No poverty
5.1
End all forms of discrimination against all women and girls everywhere arrow

Directly investable

5.2
Eliminate all forms of violence against all women and girls in the public and private spheres, including trafficking and sexual and other types of exploitation arrow

Directly investable

5.3
Eliminate all harmful practices, such as child, early and forced marriage and female genital mutilation arrow

Directly investable

5.4
Recognize and value unpaid care and domestic work through the provision of public services, infrastructure and social protection policies and the promotion of shared responsibility within the household and the family as nationally appropriate arrow

Directly investable

5.5
Ensure womenÕs full and effective participation and equal opportunities for leadership at all levels of decision-making in political, economic and public life arrow

Directly investable

5.6
Ensure universal access to sexual and reproductive health and reproductive rights as agreed in accordance with the Programme of Action of the International Conference on Population and Development and the Beijing Platform for Action and the outcome documents of their review conferences arrow

Product or service solution

Contraceptives

Theory of change

Issue - Worldwide in 2017, only 63% of women aged 15-49 were using some form of contraception. At least one in 10 married or in-union women in most regions of the world have an unmet need for family planning; that is to say, they want to stop or delay childbearing but are not using any method of contraception to prevent pregnancy - 214m women of reproductive age in developing countries who want to avoid pregnancy are not using a modern contraceptive method (UN).

Contribution - According to the World Health Organisation: "A womanÕs ability to choose if and when to become pregnant has a direct impact on her health and well-being. Family planning allows spacing of pregnancies and can delay pregnancies in young women at increased risk of health problems and death from early childbearing. It prevents unintended pregnancies, including those of older women who face increased risks related to pregnancy. Family planning enables women who wish to limit the size of their families to do so. Evidence suggests that women who have more than four children are at increased risk of maternal mortality." Also, family planning and contraception reduce the need for abortion, which can be unsafe due to lack of service provision in some countries.

Impact risks

Contribution risks

  • Medical side effects that are unexpected or worse than expected may undermine a medical intervention's effectiveness.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Evidence risks

  • Medical evidence on the effectiveness of a drug may be disputed.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Health & Well-being

5.A
Undertake reforms to give women equal rights to economic resources, as well as access to ownership and control over land and other forms of property, financial services, inheritance and natural resources, in accordance with national laws arrow

Directly investable

5.B
Enhance the use of enabling technology, in particular information and communications technology, to promote the empowerment of women arrow

Directly investable

5.C
Adopt and strengthen sound policies and enforceable legislation for the promotion of gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls at all levels arrow

Directly investable

arrow Back to the SDGs
6 Clean water
and sanitation
SDG icon - No poverty
6.1
By 2030, achieve universal and equitable access to safe and affordable drinking water for all arrow

Product or service solution

Public utilities in developing countries

Theory of change

Issue - In 2015, nearly 3bn people used a safely-managed sanitation service: 60% of these people lived in urban areas, with the other 40% living in rural areas. This means that two out of five people used safely-managed sanitation services in 2015. About 2bn people still lacked even a basic sanitation service; 70% of these live in rural areas (UN).

Contribution - Every dollar spent on water and sewage infrastructure can have a multiplier effect of up to $5 (Institute of Civil Engineers). Three out of four jobs are directly or indirectly dependent on water security. In 80% of households in the developing world, women and girls collect water. This restricts their access to education and other economic opportunities. As such, improving access to water can be a contributory factor in female empowerment in those countries (UN).

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • The environmental impact of chemicals used in water treatment may be uncertain.

Contribution risks

  • Greenhouse gas emissions relating to energy use in water treatment are substantial and contribute to climate change.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Water

6.2
By 2030, achieve access to adequate and equitable sanitation and hygiene for all and end open defecation, paying special attention to the needs of women and girls and those in vulnerable situations arrow

Product or service solution

Water testing & diagnostics

Theory of change

Issue - Almost 60% of all domestic wastewater flows is collected and safely treated. The untreated 41% presents risks to the environment and public health. (UN)

Contribution - Improved water treatment helps reduce the use of primary water resources, in particular from deep aquifers. It has positive public health implications as water quality is associated with better health outcomes.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Product safety issues may occur in case of poor manufacturing standards.
  • Data security may be a problem when using digital monitoring technology.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Water

6.3
By 2030, improve water quality by reducing pollution, eliminating dumping and minimizing release of hazardous chemicals and materials, halving the proportion of untreated wastewater and substantially increasing recycling and safe reuse globally arrow

Product or service solution

Flow efficiency

Theory of change

Issue - Efficiency in water use is increasingly critical to the sustainability of economy activities. Global water demand for the manufacturing industry is expected to increase by 400% from 2000 to 2050. Energy production is generally water-intensive. Meeting ever-growing demands for energy will generate increasing stress on freshwater resources with repercussions on other users, such as agriculture and industry.

Contribution - Increasing water-use efficiency over time means decoupling economic growth from water use across the main water-using sectors of agriculture, industry, energy and municipal water supply. This has strong synergies with sustainable food production (Sustainable Development Goal 2 - or SDG 2), economic growth (SDG 8), infrastructure and industrialisation (SDG 9), cities and human settlements (SDG 11) and consumption and production (SDG 15).

Impact risks

Contribution risks

  • Carbon emissions linked to manufacturing of flow efficiency products may contribute to global anthropogenic forcing.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Water

6.4
By 2030, substantially increase water-use efficiency across all sectors and ensure sustainable withdrawals and supply of freshwater to address water scarcity and substantially reduce the number of people suffering from water scarcity arrow

Product or service solution

Water treatment

Theory of change

Issue - About 60% of all domestic wastewater flows is collected and safely treated. The untreated 41% presents risks to the environment and public health. (UN)

Contribution - Improved water treatment helps reduce the use of primary water resources, in particular from deep aquifers. It has positive public health implications as water quality is associated with better health outcomes.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • The environmental impact of chemicals used in water treatment may be uncertain.

Contribution risks

  • Greenhouse gas emissions relating to energy use in water treatment are substantial and contribute to climate change.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Water

Product or service solution

Water testing & diagnostics

Theory of change

Issue - About 60% of all domestic wastewater flows is collected and safely treated. The untreated 41% presents risks to the environment and public health. (UN)

Contribution - Improved water treatment helps reduce the use of primary water resources, in particular from deep aquifers. It has positive public health implications as water quality is associated with better health outcomes.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Product safety issues may occur in case of poor manufacturing standards.
  • Data security may be a problem when using digital monitoring technology.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Water

Product or service solution

Water re-use

Theory of change

Issue - More than 2bn people globally are living in countries with excess water stress, defined as the ratio of total freshwater withdrawn to total renewable freshwater resources above a threshold of 25%. Northern Africa and Western Asia experience water stress levels above 60%, which indicates the strong probability of future water scarcity. (UN)

Contribution - Increasing water-use efficiency over time means decoupling economic growth from water use across the main water-using sectors of agriculture, industry, energy and municipal water supply. This has strong synergies with sustainable food production (Sustainable Development Goal 2 - or SDG 2), economic growth (SDG 8), infrastructure and industrialization (SDG 9), cities and human settlements (SDG 11) and consumption and production (SDG 15).

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • The environmental impact of chemicals used in water treatment may be uncertain.

Contribution risks

  • Greenhouse gas emissions relating to energy use in water treatment are substantial and contribute to climate change.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Water

Product or service solution

Leak detection

Theory of change

Issue - 2.1tn gallons of drinking water, or 15% of total water supply, is lost to leaks in the US annually. (Chicago-based Center for Neighborhood Technology)

Contribution - Increasing water-use efficiency over time means decoupling economic growth from water use across the main water-using sectors of agriculture, industry, energy and municipal water supply. This has strong synergies with sustainable food production (Sustainable Development Goal 2 - or SDG 2), economic growth (SDG 8), infrastructure and industrialization (SDG 9), cities and human settlements (SDG 11) and consumption and production (SDG 15).

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Product safety issues may occur in case of poor manufacturing standards.
  • Data security may be a problem when using digital monitoring technology.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Water

Product or service solution

Desalination

Theory of change

Issue - Population growth and increasing socio-economic pressures have reduced the availability of freshwater resources. In the Middle East, availability dropped from 921 m3 per capita per year in 2002 to 727 m3 per capita per year a decade later, with 16 of the 22 Arab countries falling below the water scarcity level of 1,000 m3 per capita per year and able to withdraw on average only 292 m3 per capita per year in 2011. (UN)

Contribution - Desalination increases the availability of freshwater without exploiting existing freshwater reserves.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • High production costs affecting affordability.

Contribution risks

  • High power needs which may be met using fossil fuel based energy.
  • Discharge of brine with high salt, biocide and antifouling chemicals may end up in oceans.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Water

Product or service solution

Micro-irrigation

Theory of change

Issue - Agriculture is responsible for the largest use of water globally, representing 70% of total freshwater use (World Bank). Most fields are still irrigated using flood-based techniques, which are highly inefficient: more than half of water is typically evaporated in the process.

Contribution - According to the Alliance for Water Efficiency: "Drip irrigation is arguably the most efficient method of providing water to trees, crops, gardens and landscapes. The efficiency of overhead irrigation, such as rotors, and pop-up sprayheads is typically 50% and rarely exceeds 70%. The efficiency of a well-designed drip irrigation system can reach nearly 100%."

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • High production costs affecting affordability.

Contribution risks

  • Power needs for pumping water may be met using fossil fuel based energy, leading to greenhouse gas emissions.
  • Manufacturing of irrigation products involves the use of plastics, derived from fossil fuels.
  • Higher efficiency in resource use may lead to a rebound effect in total consumption.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Water

6.5
By 2030, implement integrated water resources management at all levels, including through transboundary cooperation as appropriate arrow

Directly investable

6.6
By 2020, protect and restore water-related ecosystems, including mountains, forests, wetlands, rivers, aquifers and lakes arrow

Directly investable

6.A
By 2030, expand international cooperation and capacity-building support to developing countries in water- and sanitation-related activities and programmes, including water harvesting, desalination, water efficiency, wastewater treatment, recycling and reuse technologies arrow

Directly investable

6.B
Support and strengthen the participation of local communities in improving water and sanitation management arrow

Directly investable

arrow Back to the SDGs
7 Affordable and
clean energy
SDG icon - No poverty
7.1
By 2030, ensure universal access to affordable, reliable and modern energy services arrow

Product or service solution

Utilities with high share of generation from renewable energy

Theory of change

Issue - Electricity and heat generation represents 25% of global greenhouse gas emissions and is the largest-emitting economic sector (Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change).

Contribution - Renewables and fuel-switching would contribute to 38% of the necessary carbon dioxide emissions savings to reach the International Energy Agency's Sustainable Development Scenario.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Labour, human rights standards and pollution in the minerals supply chain that renewable energies rely on (3TGs - or Tungsten, Tantalum, Tin, and Gold - cobalt, lithium, rare earth) may be problematic.

Contribution risks

  • Poorly-managed intermittancy may lead to the use of fossil fuel power sources to deal with peak power.
  • High levels of development of renewable energies may lead to land-use issues.
  • Higher deployment of renewable energies may lead to a rebound effect, with higher consumption levels undermining the improvements in energy efficiency of the grid.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Energy transition

7.2
By 2030, increase substantially the share of renewable energy in the global energy mix arrow

Product or service solution

Wind Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM)

Theory of change

Issue - Annual offshore wind installations are set to nearly double in the 2020s. With a yearly run-rate of around 9.5 gigawatts (GW) compared to 4GW in 2018, global capacity is forecast to reach 129GW in 2030. (Bloomberg New Energy Finance)

Contribution - On average, wind generation today will avoid approximately 0.70 metric tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) for every megawatt hour produced. A typical new wind turbine will avoid over 4,300 metric tons of CO2 production annually, nearly 900 cars' worth of CO2 emissions. Overall wind turbines have the potential to reduce CO2 emissions by 85 gigatonnes (Gt) for onshore and 14Gt for offshore. (Wind Solar Alliance)

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Labour, human rights standards and pollution in the minerals supply chain that renewable energies rely on (3TGs - or Tungsten, Tantalum, Tin, and Gold - cobalt, lithium, rare earth) may be problematic.

Contribution risks

  • Poorly-managed intermittancy may lead to the use of fossil fuel power sources to deal with peak power.
  • High levels of development of renewable energies may lead to land-use issues.
  • Higher deployment of renewable energies may lead to a rebound effect, with higher consumption levels undermining the improvements in energy efficiency of the grid.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Energy transition

Product or service solution

Wind developers

Theory of change

Issue - Annual offshore wind installations are set to nearly double in the 2020s. With a yearly run-rate of around 9.5 gigawatts (GW) compared to 4GW in 2018, global capacity is forecast to reach 129GW in 2030. (Bloomberg New Energy Finance)

Contribution - On average, wind generation today will avoid approximately 0.70 metric tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) for every megawatt hour produced. A typical new wind turbine will avoid over 4,300 metric tons of CO2 production annually, nearly 900 cars' worth of CO2 emissions. Overall wind turbines have the potential to reduce CO2 emissions by 85 gigatonnes (Gt) for onshore and 14Gt for offshore. (Wind Solar Alliance)

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Labour, human rights standards and pollution in the minerals supply chain that renewable energies rely on (3TGs - or Tungsten, Tantalum, Tin, and Gold - cobalt, lithium, rare earth) may be problematic.

Contribution risks

  • Poorly managed intermittancy may lead to the use of fossil fuel power sources to deal with peak power.
  • High levels of development of renewable energies may lead to land-use issues.
  • Higher deployment of renewable energies may lead to a rebound effect, with higher consumption levels undermining the improvements in energy efficiency of the grid.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Energy transition

Product or service solution

Solar Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM)

Theory of change

Issue - Electricity and heat generation represents 25% of global greenhouse gas emissions and is the largest-emitting economic sector (Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change).

Contribution - Solar farms have the potential to reduce carbon emissions by 37 gigatonnes (Gt) by 2050, with a further 25Gt for rooftop solar and 11Gt for concentrated solar, according to Drawdown.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Labour, human rights standards and pollution in the minerals supply chain that renewable energies rely on (3TGs - or Tungsten, Tantalum, Tin, and Gold - cobalt, lithium, rare earth) may be problematic.

Contribution risks

  • Poorly-managed intermittancy may lead to the use of fossil fuel power sources to deal with peak power.
  • High levels of development of renewable energies may lead to land-use issues.
  • Higher deployment of renewable energies may lead to a rebound effect, with higher consumption levels undermining the improvements in energy efficiency of the grid.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Energy transition

Product or service solution

Solar developers

Theory of change

Issue - Electricity and heat generation represents 25% of global greenhouse gas emissions and is the largest-emitting economic sector (Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change).

Contribution - Solar farms have the potential to reduce carbon emissions by 37 gigatonnes (Gt) by 2050, with a further 25Gt for rooftop solar and 11Gt for concentrated solar, according to Drawdown.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Labour, human rights standards and pollution in the minerals supply chain that renewable energies rely on (3TGs - or Tungsten, Tantalum, Tin, and Gold - cobalt, lithium, rare earth) may be problematic

Contribution risks

  • Poorly managed intermittancy may lead to the use of fossil fuel power sources to deal with peak power.
  • High levels of development of renewable energies may lead to land-use issues.
  • Higher deployment of renewable energies may lead to a rebound effect, with higher consumption levels undermining the improvements in energy efficiency of the grid.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Energy transition

Product or service solution

Smart grid infrastructure

Theory of change

Issue - Electricity and heat generation represents 25% of global greenhouse gas emissions and is the largest-emitting economic sector (Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change).

Contribution - Renewables and fuel-switching would contribute to 38% of the necessary carbon dioxide emissions savings to reach the International Energy Agency's Sustainable Development Scenario. Smart grids with batteries create the conditions for higher penetration of renewables in the power grid thanks to higher flexibility.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Labour, human rights standards and pollution in the minerals supply chain that renewable energies rely on (3TGs - or Tungsten, Tantalum, Tin, and Gold - cobalt, lithium, rare earth) may be problematic.

Contribution risks

  • Poorly-managed intermittancy may lead to the use of fossil fuel power sources to deal with peak power.
  • High levels of development of renewable energies may lead to land-use issues.
  • Higher deployment of renewable energies may lead to a rebound effect, with higher consumption levels undermining the improvements in energy efficiency of the grid.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Energy transition

Product or service solution

Energy storage

Theory of change

Issue - Renewable energy has the potential to greatly reduce the carbon footprint of economies. The increased deployment of renewables into power grids is challenging because most of them - especially wind and solar - produce energy intermittantly. This can create a mistmatch in supply and demand of energy that is difficult to manage - especially as today power grids operate mostly on a flow basis, with very limited, if any, energy storage.

Contribution - Renewables and fuel-switching would contribute to 38% of the necessary carbon dioxide emissions savings to reach the International Energy Agency's Sustainable Development Scenario. Smart grids with batteries create the conditions for higher penetration of renewables in the power grid thanks to higher flexibility. Wind and solar power produce intermitant energy output, leading to an inconsistent supply of energy. Energy storage will therefore be crucial to overcoming the biggest limitation to renewable power.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Labour, human rights standards and pollution in the minerals supply chain that renewable energies rely on (3TGs - or Tungsten, Tantalum, Tin, and Gold - cobalt, lithium, rare earth) may be problematic.

Contribution risks

  • Poorly-managed intermittancy may lead to the use of fossil fuel power sources to deal with peak power.
  • High levels of development of renewable energies may lead to land-use issues.
  • Higher deployment of renewable energies may lead to a rebound effect, with higher consumption levels undermining the improvements in energy efficiency of the grid.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Energy transition

Product or service solution

Electric vehicles

Theory of change

Issue - Transport represents 14% of global greenhouse gas emissions. In the EU, road transport contributes about one-fifth of the EU's total emissions of carbon dioxide. While these emissions fell by 3.3% in 2012, they are still 20.5% higher than in 1990. Transport is the only major sector in the EU where greenhouse gas emissions are still rising.

Contribution - Electric vehicles are on average 30% cleaner than the most efficient internal-combustion engines (International Council on Clean Transportation). Carbon reductions are even more significant in countries where the power grid has a heavy fossil fuel content, like India or China. Electric vehicles have the potential to reduce carbon emissions by 10 gigatonnes.

Impact risks

Evidence risks

  • With electric vehicle technology changing rapidly, a wide range of vehicle electrification approaches and big differences between car manufacturers, the results of lifecycle analyses can vary greatly. Some studies point to higher environmental impact of some electric vehicles especially when the power grid has high share of coal.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Labour, human rights standards and pollution in the minerals supply chain that most batteries rely on (3TGs - or Tungsten, Tantalum, Tin, and Gold - cobalt, lithium, rare earth) may be problematic.

Contribution risks

  • Higher deployment of electric vehicles may lead to a rebound effect, with higher consumption levels undermining the improvements in energy efficiency of the grid.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Future mobility

Product or service solution

Renewable energy financing

Theory of change

Issue - Electricity and heat generation represents 25% of global greenhouse gas emissions and is the largest-emitting economic sector (Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change).

Contribution - New Climate Energy estimates that at least $1tn of investment in low-carbon power supply and (non-transport) energy efficiency a year from 2015-2030 is needed to keep global warming below 2 degrees.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Labour, human rights standards and pollution in the minerals supply chain that renewable energies rely on (3TGs - or Tungsten, Tantalum, Tin, and Gold - cobalt, lithium, rare earth) may be problematic.

Contribution risks

  • Poorly-managed intermittancy may lead to the use of fossil fuel power sources to deal with peak power.
  • High levels of development of renewable energies may lead to land-use issues.
  • Higher deployment of renewable energies may lead to a rebound effect, with higher consumption levels undermining the improvements in energy efficiency of the grid.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Energy transition

Product or service solution

Fuel-cell vehicles

Theory of change

Issue - Transport represents 14% of global greenhouse gas emissions. In the EU, road transport contributes about one-fifth of the EU's total emissions of carbon dixoide. While these emissions fell by 3.3% in 2012, they are still 20.5% higher than in 1990. Transport is the only major sector in the EU where greenhouse gas emissions are still rising.

Contribution - The first commercially available hydrogen-powered fuel cell car, the Hyundai Tucson Fuel Cell SUV, produces zero carbon dioxide combined emissions versus the diesel-powered version, which produces 125 grams per kilometer.

Impact risks

Evidence risk

  • There are ongoing debates on whether the full life-cycle emissions of hydrogen is positive in terms of environmental impact.

Contribution risks

  • Hydrogen, to be truly low-carbon, needs to be produced from renewable energy, while today it is manufactured mostly from natural gas.

Execution risks

  • Scalability may be constrained due to capital expenditure considerations for hydrogen refuelling infrastructure.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Future mobility

Product or service solution

Advanced Biofuels

Theory of change

Issue - Transport represents 14% of global greenhouse gas emissions. In the EU, road transport contributes about one-fifth of the EU's total emissions of carbon dixoide. While these emissions fell by 3.3% in 2012, they are still 20.5% higher than in 1990. Transport is the only major sector in the EU where greenhouse gas emissions are still rising.

Contribution - Renewable diesel produced from used vegetable oil or waste animal fats could reduce lifecycle carbon dioxide emissions by as much as 85%.

Impact risks

Evidence risks

  • Many advanced biofuels from waste products are mixed with biofuels from crops, which have a negative full life-cycle carbon footprint, including crop production and emissions from land-use change.

Contribution risks

  • While advanced biofuels utilise a resource that would have gone to landfills, their use still leads to greenhouse gas and fine particules emissions.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Future mobility

Product or service solution

LED lighting

Theory of change

Issue - Lighting accounts for nearly 6% of global carbon dioxide emissions.

Contribution - LED lighting has the potential to reduce carbon emissions by 7.8 gigatonnes (Gt) in households and 5Gt in commercial buildings. A global switch to energy-efficient LED technology could save over 1,400m tons of carbon dixoide and avoid the construction of 1,250 power stations (Project Drawdown).

Impact risks

Contribution risks

  • Better efficiency may improve relative energy use, but those gains may be more than offset by increased consumption overall, with a rebound effect.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Energy transition

7.3
By 2030, double the global rate of improvement in energy efficiency arrow

Product or service solution

Efficiency in industrial processes

Theory of change

Issue - About a fifth of US greenhouse gas emissions come directly from industrial sources, such as manufacturing, food processing, mining, and construction (US EPA).

Contribution - Efficiency improvements would contribute to 44% of the necessary carbon dioxide emissions savings to reach the International Energy Agency's Sustainable Development Scenario. It is the largest improvement area for achieving low-carbon scenarios, above even renewable energies. For example, shifting from basic oxygen blast furnaces to electric arc furnaces in the production of iron-ore steel contributed to a 37% reduction in the energy intensity of US crude steel production from 1991Ð2010 (Center for Climate and Energy Solutions).

Impact risks

Contribution risks

  • Better efficiency may improve relative energy use, but those gains may be more than offset by increased consumption overall, with a rebound effect.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Impact enablers

Product or service solution

Measurement equipment

Theory of change

Issue - About a fifth of US greenhouse gas emissions come directly from industrial sources, such as manufacturing, food processing, mining, and construction. (US EPA)

Contribution - Efficiency improvements would contribute to 44% of the necessary carbon dioxide emissions savings to reach the International Energy Agency's Sustainable Development Scenario. It is the largest improvement area for achieving low-carbon scenarios, above even renewable energies.

Impact risks

Contribution risks

  • Better efficiency may improve relative energy use, but those gains may be more than offset by increased consumption overall, with a rebound effect.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Impact enablers

Product or service solution

Building insulation

Theory of change

Issue - Cities account for up to 75% of greenhouse gas emissions and energy use, with the latter expected to rise to 80% in 2040.

Contribution - Better cavity wall and loft insulation has the potential to reduce carbon emissions by 8 gigatonnes by 2050, according to Drawdown.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Some building insulation materials have in the past showed large-scale health hazards.

Contribution risks

  • Construction is one of the largest generators of waste globally. Upgrading buildings to better insulation would lead to generation of waste.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Impact enablers

Product or service solution

Internal Combustion Engine (ICE) efficiency

Theory of change

Issue - Transport represents 14% of global greenhouse gas emissions. In the EU, road transport contributes about one-fifth of the EU's total emissions of carbon dioxide. While these emissions fell by 3.3% in 2012, they are still 20.5% higher than in 1990. Transport is the only major sector in the EU where greenhouse gas emissions are still rising.

Contribution - Efficiency improvements would contribute to 44% of the necessary carbon dioxide emissions savings to reach the International Energy Agency's Sustainable Development Scenario. It is the largest improvement area for achieving low-carbon scenarios, above even renewable energies.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Faster-than-expected shift to pure battery electric vehicles may make internal combustion engine efficiency (ICE) obsolete.

Contribution risks

  • Life-cycle emissions of high-efficiency ICE vehicles may not be attractive enough compared to electric vehicles, although they may be interesting as a bridging technology or in specific applications where electrification is more difficult.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Some ICE efficiency products use minerals that may have labour and human rights risks in the supply chain.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Impact enablers

Product or service solution

Refrigerant management

Theory of change

Issue - Refrigerant management has a major role in climate change. According to the UN: Ò328m Americans consume approximately the same amount of electricity for air conditioning alone than the total electricity used for all needs by 1.1bn people in Africa.Ó The International Energy Agency also estimates that increases in air conditioning could capture nearly 80% of the increase in power generation from renewable energies.

Contribution - According to Drawdown, refrigerant management has the largest potential of all climate-related solutions, with the potential for a 90 gigatonne reduction in carbon dioxide by 2050.

Impact risks

Evidence risks

  • Life-cycle emissions of new refrigerant management is still an emerging research field.

Execution risks

  • New chemical compounds introduce safety risks.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Energy transition

Product or service solution

Sustainable materials

Theory of change

Issue - Industrial activities represent about 20% of global greenhouse gas emissions. Within this, steel represents 25%, cement 19%, paper 4%, plastic 4%, aluminium 3%. These are the five priority materials for carbon reductions in materials used. (Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership)

Contribution - Dramatic changes can be made to materials we use. According to Drawdown, 90% of plastics could be derived from plants instead of fossil fuels.

Impact risks

Evidence risks

  • It may be difficult measure the impact of new materials especially in niche applications.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Impact enablers

7.A
By 2030, enhance international cooperation to facilitate access to clean energy research and technology, including renewable energy, energy efficiency and advanced and cleaner fossil-fuel technology, and promote investment in energy infrastructure and clean energy technology arrow

Directly investable

7.B
By 2030, expand infrastructure and upgrade technology for supplying modern and sustainable energy services for all in developing countries, in particular least developed countries, small island developing States, and land-locked developing countries, in accordance with their respective programmes of support arrow
arrow Back to the SDGs
8 Decent work and
economic growth
SDG icon - No poverty
8.1
Sustain per capita economic growth in accordance with national circumstances and, in particular, at least 7 per cent gross domestic product growth per annum in the least developed countries arrow

Directly investable

8.2
Achieve higher levels of economic productivity through diversification, technological upgrading and innovation, including through a focus on high-value added and labour-intensive sectors arrow

Product or service solution

Internet of Things

Theory of change

Issue - Many economic assets are underutilised or used in a sub-optimal way, leading to waste of resources.

Contribution - The Internet of Things could contribute to sustainable economic growth in a myriad of ways: remote monitoring of infrastructure enabling preventive maintenance; smart cities; optimising traffic; precision irrigation boosting yields, among others.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Macro-impact on job creation and speed of adjustment from jobs destroyed to new jobs created.

Execution risks

  • Privacy and data security risk may materialise if not addressed with suitable policies and processes.

Evidence risks

  • It may be difficult to clearly measure the impact profile due to their diffuse nature and second-order effects.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Impact enablers

Product or service solution

Automation

Theory of change

Issue - Productivity improvements have slowed down, especially in developed economies. There is a productivity challenge to overcome to make sure that per capita growth is maintained or continues to grow.

Contribution - Researchers have found that the use of robots within manufacturing raised the annual growth of labour productivity and GDP by 0.36% and 0.37%, respectively, between 1993 and 2007. This represents 10% of total GDP growth in the countries studied and 16% of labour productivity growth over that time period (Brookings Institution).

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Macro-impact on job creation and speed of adjustment from jobs destroyed to new jobs created.

Evidence risks

  • It may be difficult to clearly measure the impact profile due to their diffuse nature and second-order effects.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Impact enablers

8.3
Promote development-oriented policies that support productive activities, decent job creation, entrepreneurship, creativity and innovation, and encourage the formalization and growth of micro-, small- and medium-sized enterprises, including through access to financial services arrow

Product or service solution

Micro and SME lending

Theory of change

Issue - Only 27% of people aged 15 plus have formal savings, and 11% have formal borrowing, according to the World Bank. Financial account ownership is lower among young adults, those with less education, women and poorer adults

Contribution - Micro-lending focuses on expanding access to banking services to previously unbanked populations. While evidence of impact is context-dependent, there seems to be positive impacts on household consumption and women's health.

Impact risks

Evidence risks

  • There is still academic debate on the evidence of positive impact from micro-lending on poverty reduction in some countries.

Execution risks

  • Excessively-high interest rates may undermine the impact of lending.
  • Aggressive bad debt collection practices may lead to negative social outcomes.
  • Lending to companies involved in controversial industries may create negative impacts.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Financial inclusion

8.4
Improve progressively, through 2030, global resource efficiency in consumption and production and endeavour to decouple economic growth from environmental degradation, in accordance with the 10-year framework of programmes on sustainable consumption and production, with developed countries taking the lead arrow

Product or service solution

Sharing economy

Theory of change

Issue - Many assets are underutilised, which is a wasteful use of resources. A prime example of this is light vehicles, they are unused 95% of the time (RAC Foundation).

Contribution - One shared car could replace approximately four to 13 personal cars. Accounting for potential increases in new car sales to car-sharing fleets and more heavy utilisation of shared cars, carbon dioxide emissions could be reduced by roughly 40 to 140 kg per household per year from reduced production and maintenance of cars.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Privacy and data security risk may materialise if not addressed with suitable policies and processes.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Working conditions of contractual staff may not be sufficient, especially when excessively using short-term contracts.

Evidence risks

  • It may be difficult to clearly measure the impact due to their diffuse nature and second-order effects.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Circular economy

Product or service solution

Waste collection, recycling and re-use

Theory of change

Issue - Should the global population reach 9.6bn by 2050, the equivalent of almost three planets could be required to provide the natural resources needed to sustain current lifestyles (UN). In the OECD, recycling rates have been improving but are still at only about 25%.

Contribution - Recycling allows for a closed-loop system where less virgin resources are taken from the environment, thus limiting environmental degradation. If managed sustainably scarce natural resources can benefit current and future generations. While the OECD recycling average is only 25%, countries like Germany or Taiwan are able to achieve the highest recycling rates of above 55%.

Impact risks

Efficiency risks

  • Some recycling processes have a high environmental impact, especially when factoring in energy needs, which may be less attractive than using virgin materials in some cases.

Execution risks

  • Disposal of non-recyclable materials needs to be handled carefully in order to not generate pollution.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Working conditions of staff and contractors may be problematic, especially in terms of health and safety.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Circular economy

Product or service solution

Testing, inspection & certification services

Theory of change

Issue - Supply chains lack transparency. A survey of chief procurement officers in 2018 found that 65% declared having limited to no visibility beyond their tier 1 suppliers (Deloitte). This can lead to poor understanding of supply chains, and thus suboptimal allocation of resources.

Contribution - Testing and certification enables companies and customers to understand supply chain sustainability, which improves transparency and should lead to more-informed decisions.

Impact risks

Evidence risks

  • It may be difficult to clearly measure the impact profile of testing, inspection and certification.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Impact enablers

8.5
By 2030, achieve full and productive employment and decent work for all women and men, including for young people and persons with disabilities, and equal pay for work of equal value arrow

Directly investable

8.6
By 2020, substantially reduce the proportion of youth not in employment, education or training arrow

Directly investable

8.7
Take immediate and effective measures to eradicate forced labour, end modern slavery and human trafficking and secure the prohibition and elimination of the worst forms of child labour, including recruitment and use of child soldiers, and by 2025 end child labour in all its forms arrow

Directly investable

8.8
Protect labour rights and promote safe and secure working environments for all workers, including migrant workers, in particular women migrants, and those in precarious employment arrow

Directly investable

8.9
By 2030, devise and implement policies to promote sustainable tourism that creates jobs and promotes local culture and products arrow

Directly investable

8.10
Strengthen the capacity of domestic financial institutions to encourage and expand access to banking, insurance and financial services for all arrow

Directly investable

8.A
Increase Aid for Trade support for developing countries, in particular least developed countries, including through the Enhanced Integrated Framework for Trade-Related Technical Assistance to Least Developed Countries arrow

Directly investable

8.B
By 2020, develop and operationalize a global strategy for youth employment and implement the Global Jobs Pact of the International Labour Organization arrow

Directly investable

arrow Back to the SDGs
9 Industry, innovation
and infrastructure
SDG icon - No poverty
9.1
Develop quality, reliable, sustainable and resilient infrastructure, including regional and transborder infrastructure, to support economic development and human well-being, with a focus on affordable and equitable access for all arrow

Product or service solution

Transport infrastructure

Theory of change

Issue - Inadequate infrastructure leads to a lack of access to crucial services and markets, jobs and information, creating a major barrier for economic development. For example, there is a direct link between lack of access to good roads and poverty. In Mozambique, fewer than one in 20 people have access to good roads in the counties of Mandera and Wajir, where 80% of the population lives below the national poverty line (World Bank Sustainable Development Goal Atlas 2018). In some low-income African countries, infrastructure constraints cut business productivity by around 40% (UN Development Programme).

Contribution - Improved infrastructure increases the productivity of a country, improves employment prospects and leads to higher GDP/capita. For example, in 2015, the estimated global economic impact (both direct and indirect) of air transport was $2.7tn, equivalent to 3.5% of global GDP (UN).

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Infrastructure provision in itself is not sufficient, access needs to be affordable and equitable.

Execution risks

  • Working conditions of staff and contractors in construction projects may be not good enough.

Contribution risks

  • The environmental impact of large infrastructure project in terms of biodiversity and carbon emissions may be negative.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Future Mobility

Product or service solution

Education providers

Theory of change

Issue - Education and health care are underserved services in many developing countries. Over 265m children are currently out of school and 22% of them are of primary school age (UN). Only 10% of adults reach post secondary education globally. Several studies have demonstrated that low levels of education and healthcare hamper economic growth, which in turn accelerates poverty (UNESCO).

Contribution - Education and healthcare are important investments into the human capital of an economy. For example, research suggests increasing the years of schooling among adults (15 years old and over) by two years would help to lift nearly 60m people out of poverty. Achieving universal primary and secondary attainment in the adult population would help to lift more than 420m out of poverty, thus reducing the number of poor worldwide by more than half (UNESCO).

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Lack of skilled staff may limit the ability to deliver services.
  • Appropriate education outcomes - for instance, as measured by the OECD's Programme for International Student Assessment (or PISA) - may not be achieved.
  • Privacy and data security risk may materialise if not addressed with suitable policies and processes.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Education

Product or service solution

Water treatment & distribution

Theory of change

Issue - 2.5bn people worldwide lack access to basic sanitation and 748m people lack access to safe water (World Health Organisation). The main cause is lack of water distribution infrastructure and waste-water treatment.

Contribution - Access to clean water and good health are inextricably linked. About half of the developing worldÕs hospital beds are occupied by people with water-related illness (UN Development Programme).

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • The environmental impact of chemicals used in water treatment may be uncertain.

Contribution risks

  • Greenhouse gas emissions relating to energy use in water treatment are substantial and contribute to climate change.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Water

Product or service solution

Waste management

Theory of change

Issue - Growing population, rising standards of living, industrialisation, and production and consumption of new products are acting together to generate increasingly greater quantities of solid waste. And that growing pile of waste is creating serious managment and disposal problems. Without waste management there is an increased likelihood of disease spreading, which has a negative impact on population health.

Contribution - Waste management ensures recycling and re-use are possible, supporting a circular economy where hazardous materials can be dealt with appropriately, reducing the negative impact on population health from the spread of disease.

Impact risks

Efficiency risks

  • Some recycling processes have a high environmental impact, especially when factoring in energy needs, which may be less attractive than using virgin materials in some cases.

Execution risks

  • Disposal of non-recyclable materials needs to be handled carefully in order to not generate pollution.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Working conditions of staff and contractors may be problematic, especially in terms of health and safety.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Circular economy

Product or service solution

Electric vehicle charging points

Theory of change

Issue - Transport represents 14% of global greenhouse gas emissions. In the EU, road transport contributes about one-fifth of the EU's total emissions of carbon dioxide. While these emissions fell by 3.3% in 2012, they are still 20.5% higher than in 1990. Transport is the only major sector in the EU where greenhouse gas emissions are still rising.

2.6bn people in developing countries do not have access to constant electricity (UNDP).

Highly-polluting energy generation leads to air-quality issues impacting on population health, particularly in urban environments.

Contribution - Electric vehicles on average reduce carbon emissions by 30% globally (International Council on Clean Transportation). Carbon reductions are even more significant in countries where the power grid has a heavy fossil fuel content, like India or China. Electric vehicles have the potential to reduce carbon emissions by 10 gigatonnes.

Cleaner fuels and vehicles can have a significant impact on both climate change and health. A study by Harvard's Center for Health and the Global Environment showed the climate change and health benefits are on par with each other.

Impact risks

Evidence risks

  • Full-cycle energy consumption needs to be examined to determine the full impact. For exampl,e coal-powered electricity plants supporting access to power need to be understood versus more sustainable renewable generation.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • There may be issues with labour, human rights standards and pollution in the minerals supply chain (3TGs - or Tungsten, Tantalum, Tin, and Gold - cobalt, lithium, rare earth).

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Energy transition

Product or service solution

Utilities with high share of generation from renewable energy

Theory of change

Issue - Electricity and heat generation represents 25% of global greenhouse gas emissions and is the largest-emitting economic sector (Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change).

Contribution - Renewables and fuel-switching would contribute to 38% of the necessary carbon dioxide emissions savings to reach the International Energy Agency's Sustainable Development Scenario.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Labour, human rights standards and pollution in the minerals supply chain that renewable energies rely on (3TGs - or Tungsten, Tantalum, Tin, and Gold - cobalt, lithium, rare earth) may be problematic.

Contribution risks

  • Poorly-managed intermittancy may lead to the use of fossil fuel power sources to deal with peak power.
  • High levels of development of renewable energies may lead to land-use issues.
  • Higher deployment of renewable energies may lead to a rebound effect, with higher consumption levels undermining the improvements in energy efficiency of the grid.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Energy transition

Product or service solution

Wind Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM)

Theory of change

Issue - Annual offshore wind installations are set to nearly double in the 2020s. With a yearly run-rate of around 9.5 gigawatts (GW) compared to 4GW in 2018, global capacity is forecast to reach 129GW in 2030 (Bloomberg New Energy Finance).

Contribution - On average, wind generation today will avoid approximately 0.70 metric tons of carbon dioxide production for every megawatt hour of generation. A typical new wind turbine will avoid over 4,300 metric tons of carbon dioxide production annually - or nearly 900 cars' worth of emissions. Overall, wind turbines have the potential to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 85 gigatonnes (Gt) for onshore and 14Gt for offshore (Wind Solar Alliance).

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Labour, human rights standards and pollution in the minerals supply chain that renewable energies rely on (3TGs - or Tungsten, Tantalum, Tin, and Gold - cobalt, lithium, rare earth) may be problematic.

Contribution risks

  • Poorly-managed intermittancy may lead to the use of fossil fuel power sources to deal with peak power.
  • High levels of development of renewable energies may lead to land-use issues.
  • Higher deployment of renewable energies may lead to a rebound effect, with higher consumption levels undermining the improvements in energy efficiency of the grid.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Energy transition

Product or service solution

Wind developers

Theory of change

Issue - Annual offshore wind installations are set to nearly double in the 2020s. With a yearly run-rate of around 9.5 gigawatts (GW) compared to 4GW in 2018, global capacity is forecast to reach 129GW in 2030 (Bloomberg New Energy Finance).

Contribution - On average, wind generation today will avoid approximately 0.70 metric tons of carbon dioxide production for every megawatt hour of generation. A typical new wind turbine will avoid over 4,300 metric tons of carbon dioxide production annually - or nearly 900 cars' worth of emissions. Overall, wind turbines have the potential to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 85 gigatonnes (Gt) for onshore and 14Gt for offshore (Wind Solar Alliance).

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Labour, human rights standards and pollution in the minerals supply chain that renewable energies rely on (3TGs - or Tungsten, Tantalum, Tin, and Gold - cobalt, lithium, rare earth) may be problematic.

Contribution risks

  • Poorly-managed intermittancy may lead to the use of fossil fuel power sources to deal with peak power.
  • High levels of development of renewable energies may lead to land-use issues.
  • Higher deployment of renewable energies may lead to a rebound effect, with higher consumption levels undermining the improvements in energy efficiency of the grid.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Energy transition

Product or service solution

Solar Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM)

Theory of change

Issue - Electricity and heat generation represents 25% of global greenhouse gas emissions and is the largest emitting economic sector (Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change).

Contribution - Solar farms have the potential to reduce carbon emissions by 37 gigatonnes (Gt) by 2050, with a further 25Gt for rooftop solar and 11Gt for concentrated solar.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Labour, human rights standards and pollution in the minerals supply chain that renewable energies rely on (3TGs - or Tungsten, Tantalum, Tin, and Gold - cobalt, lithium, rare earth) may be problematic.

Contribution risks

  • Poorly-managed intermittancy may lead to the use of fossil fuel power sources to deal with peak power.
  • High levels of development of renewable energies may lead to land-use issues.
  • Higher deployment of renewable energies may lead to a rebound effect, with higher consumption levels undermining the improvements in energy efficiency of the grid.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Energy transition

Product or service solution

Solar developers

Theory of change

Issue - Electricity and heat generation represents 25% of global greenhouse gas emissions and is the largest emitting economic sector (Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change).

Contribution - Solar farms have the potential to reduce carbon emissions by 37 gigatonnes (Gt) by 2050, with a further 25Gt for rooftop solar and 11Gt for concentrated solar.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Labour, human rights standards and pollution in the minerals supply chain that renewable energies rely on (3TGs - or Tungsten, Tantalum, Tin, and Gold - cobalt, lithium, rare earth) may be problematic.

Contribution risks

  • Poorly-managed intermittancy may lead to the use of fossil fuel power sources to deal with peak power.
  • High levels of development of renewable energies may lead to land-use issues.
  • Higher deployment of renewable energies may lead to a rebound effect, with higher consumption levels undermining the improvements in energy efficiency of the grid.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Energy transition

Product or service solution

Smart grid infrastructure

Theory of change

Issue - Electricity and heat generation represents 25% of global greenhouse gas emissions and is the largest emitting economic sector (Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change).

Contribution - Renewables and fuel-switching would contribute to 38% of the necessary carbon dioxide emissions savings to reach the International Energy Agency's Sustainable Development Scenario. Smart grids with batteries create the conditions for higher penetration of renewables in the power grid thanks to higher flexibility.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Labour, human rights standards and pollution in the minerals supply chain that renewable energies rely on (3TGs - or Tungsten, Tantalum, Tin, and Gold - cobalt, lithium, rare earth) may be problematic.

Contribution risks

  • Poorly-managed intermittancy may lead to the use of fossil fuel power sources to deal with peak power.
  • High levels of development of renewable energies may lead to land-use issues.
  • Higher deployment of renewable energies may lead to a rebound effect, with higher consumption levels undermining the improvements in energy efficiency of the grid.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Energy transition

Product or service solution

Energy storage

Theory of change

Issue - Growing population, rising standards of living, industrialisation, and production and consumption of new products are acting together to generate increasingly greater quantities of solid wastes, and this in turn is creating serious problems for management and proper disposal. Without waste management there is an increased likelihood of disease spreading, which has a negative impact on population health.

Contribution - Renewables and fuel-switching would contribute to 38% of the necessary carbon dioxide emissions savings to reach the International Energy Agency's Sustainable Development Scenario. Smart grids with batteries create the conditions for higher penetration of renewables in the power grid thanks to higher flexibility. Wind and solar power produce intermitant energy output, leading to an inconsistent supply. Energy storage will therefore be crucial to overcoming the biggest limitation to renewable power.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Labour, human rights standards and pollution in the minerals supply chain that renewable energies rely on (3TGs - or Tungsten, Tantalum, Tin, and Gold - cobalt, lithium, rare earth) may be problematic.

Contribution risks

  • Poorly-managed intermittancy may lead to the use of fossil fuel power sources to deal with peak power.
  • High levels of development of renewable energies may lead to land-use issues.
  • Higher deployment of renewable energies may lead to a rebound effect, with higher consumption levels undermining the improvements in energy efficiency of the grid.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Energy transition

Product or service solution

Fuel-cell vehicles infrastructure

Theory of change

Issue - Electricity and heat generation represents 25% of global greenhouse gas emissions and is the largest emitting economic sector (Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change).

Contribution - The first commercially-available hydrogen-powered fuel cell car, the Hyundai Tucson Fuel Cell SUV, produces zero carbon dioxide combined emissions versus the diesel-powered version, which emits 125 grams per kilometer.

Impact risks

Evidence risk

  • There are ongoing debates on whether the full life-cycle emissions of hydrogen is positive in terms of environmental impact.

Contribution risks

  • Hydrogen, to be truly low-carbon, needs to be produced from renewable energy, while today it is mostly made from natural gas.

Execution risks

  • Scalability may be constrained due to capital expenditure considerations for hydrogen-refuelling infrastructure.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Future mobility

9.2
Promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and, by 2030, significantly raise industryÕs share of employment and gross domestic product, in line with national circumstances, and double its share in least developed countries arrow

Directly investable

9.3
Increase the access of small-scale industrial and other enterprises, in particular in developing countries, to financial services, including affordable credit, and their integration into value chains and markets arrow

Product or service solution

Microfinance in developing countries

Theory of change

Issue - Small and medium-sized enterprises make up over 90% of business worldwide, representing between 50-60% of employment. While about 80% of small-to-medium enterprises (SMEs) have access to some account services with formal financial institutions, access to credit remains low. Only 37% of SMEs receive the credit they need to compete, grow, and create more formal sector jobs, which pay better and last longer than informal employment. The problem is more severe when micro-enterprises and the informal sector are taken into account. The overall SME financing gap, has been estimated by an International Finance Corporation and McKinsey study to be in excess of $3tn, two-thirds of which is in developing economies.

Contribution - Micro-lending focuses on expanding access to banking services to previously unbanked populations. While evidence of impact is context-dependent, there seems to be positive impacts on household consumption and women's health.

Impact risks

Evidence risks

  • There is still academic debate on whether micro-finance has led to poverty reduction in some countries.

Execution risks

  • Excessively-high interest rates may undermine the impact of lending.
  • Aggressive bad debt collection practices may lead to negative social outcomes.
  • Lending to companies involved in controversial industries may create negative impacts.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Financial inclusion

Product or service solution

Small-to-medium enterprise (SME) lending in developing countries

Theory of change

Issue - Small-to-medium enterprises (SMEs) are major employment engines yet often lack access to credit to finance growth. In Southeastern Europe, 70% of SMEs consider it difficult or impossible to get a long-term loan (EBRD).

Contribution - Prudent lending to small-to-medium enterprises (SMEs) in developing countries supports corporate investment in productive assets, generating greater economic activity and more employment opportunities.

Impact risks

Evidence risks

  • There is still academic debate on whether micro-finance has led to poverty reduction in some countries.

Execution risks

  • Excessively-high interest rates may undermine the impact of lending.
  • Aggressive bad debt collection practices may lead to negative social outcomes.
  • Lending to companies involved in controversial industries may create negative impacts.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Financial inclusion

9.4
By 2030, upgrade infrastructure and retrofit industries to make them sustainable, with increased resource-use efficiency and greater adoption of clean and environmentally sound technologies and industrial processes, with all countries taking action in accordance with their respective capabilities arrow

Product or service solution

Automation

Theory of change

Issue - Outdated industrial operations tend to be less efficient and more polluting. Older industry generally involves more low-quality manual labour, with job roles that can have lower safety levels and can be detrimental to health and wellbeing.

Contribution - Retro-fitting can extend the life of existing buildings and infrastructure, with significant environmental benefits in improving energy efficiency and pollution. Other technology-led improvements such as automation can increase productivity so human input can be more value-added, helping eliminate low-quality manual labour which can be detrimental to health.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Macro-impact on job creation and speed of adjustment from jobs destroyed to new jobs created.

Evidence risks

  • It may be difficult to clearly measure the impact of changes due to their diffuse nature and second-order effects.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Impact enablers

Product or service solution

Efficiency in industrial processes

Theory of change

Issue - About a fifth of US greenhouse gas emissions come directly from industrial sources, such as manufacturing, food processing, mining, and construction (US Environmental Protection Agency).

Contribution - Efficiency improvements would contribute to 44% of the necessary carbon dioxide emissions savings to reach the International Energy Agency's Sustainable Development Scenario. It is the largest improvement area for achieving low-carbon scenarios, above even renewable energies. For example, shifting from basic oxygen blast furnaces to electric arc furnaces in the production of iron-ore steel contributed to a 37% reduction in the energy intensity of US crude steel production from 1991Ð2010 (Center for Climate and Energy Solutions).

Impact risks

Contribution risks

  • Better efficiency may improve relative energy use, but these gains may be more than offset by increased consumption overall (rebound effect).

Evidence risks

  • It may be difficult to clearly measure the impact of changes due to their diffuse nature and second-order effects.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Impact enablers

Product or service solution

Flow efficiency

Theory of change

Issue - Efficiency in water use is becoming increasingly critical to the sustainability of economy activities. Global water demand for the manufacturing industry is expected to increase by 400% from 2000 to 2050. Energy production is generally water-intensive. Meeting ever-growing demands for energy will generate increasing stress on freshwater resources with repercussions on other users, such as agriculture and industry.

Contribution - Increasing water-use efficiency over time means decoupling economic growth from water use across the main water-using sectors of agriculture, industry, energy and municipal water supply. This has strong synergies with sustainable food production (Sustainable Development Goal 2 - or SDG 2), economic growth (SDG 8), infrastructure and industrialisation (SDG 9), cities and human settlements (SDG 11) and consumption and production (SDG 15).

Impact risks

Contribution risks

  • Carbon emissions linked to manufacturing of flow efficiency products may contribute to global anthropogenic forcing.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Water

Product or service solution

Waste collection, recycling and reuse

Theory of change

Issue - Should the global population reach 9.6bn by 2050, the equivalent of almost three planets could be required to provide the natural resources needed to sustain current lifestyles (UN). In the OECD, recycling rates have been improving but are still at only about 25%.

Contribution - Recycling allows for a closed-loop system where less virgin resources are taken from the environment, thus limiting environmental degradation. If managed sustainably, scarce natural resources can benefit current and future generations. While the OECD recycling average is only 25%, countries like Germany or Taiwan are able to achieve the highest recycling rates of above 55%.

Impact risks

Efficiency risks

  • Some recycling processes have a high environmental impact, especially when factoring in energy needs, which may be less attractive than using virgin materials in some cases.

Execution risks

  • Disposal of non-recyclable materials needs to be handled carefully in order to not generate pollution.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Working conditions of staff and contractors may be problematic, especially in terms of health and safety.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Circular economy

Product or service solution

Pooled systems (sharing economy)

Theory of change

Issue - Many assets are underutilised, which is a wasteful use of resources. A prime example of this is light vehicles, they are unused 95% of the time (RAC Foundation).

Contribution - One shared car could replace approximately four to 13 personal cars. Accounting for potential increases in new car sales to car-sharing fleets and more heavy utilszation of shared cars, carbon dioxide emissions could be reduced by roughly 40 to 140kg per household per year from reduced production and maintenance of cars.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Privacy and data security risk may materialise if not addressed with suitable policies and processes.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Working conditions of contractual staff may not be sufficient, especially when excessively using short-term contracts.

Evidence risks

  • It may be difficult to clearly measure the impact of changes due to their diffuse nature and second-order effects.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Circular economy

9.5
Enhance scientific research, upgrade the technological capabilities of industrial sectors in all countries, in particular developing countries, including, by 2030, encouraging innovation and substantially increasing the number of research and development workers per 1 million people and public and private research and development spending arrow

Product or service solution

Measurement equipment

Theory of change

Issue - Scientific research can only be as good as its capacity to accurately measure things. For instance, up until the advent of the Human Genome project in the beginning of the 21st century, the ability to research genes and harness their power in the immune system was very limited.

Contribution - Enhanced scientific research and technological innovations can lead to efficiency improvements which would contribute to 44% of the necessary carbon dioxide emissions savings to reach the International Energy Agency's Sustainable Development Scenario. It is the largest improvement area for achieving low-carbon scenarios, above even renewable energies. Better measurement in the field of genomic sequencing has also been fundamental to the development of gene therapies especially for cancer treatments.

Impact risks

Evidence risks

  • It may be difficult to clearly measure the impact of changes due to their diffuse nature and second-order effects.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Impact enablers

Product or service solution

Modelling & Simulation software

Theory of change

Issue - Research advancements are limited by the ability to model things with great accuracy. Often models are tested with physical prototypes, which are costly and time-consuming to produce.

Contribution - Research and development (R&D) and innovation are major drivers of competitiveness and employment in a knowledge-based economy. Greater investment in R&D provides new jobs in business and academia, increasing demand for scientists and researchers in the labour market. Knowledge-intensive sectors are key drivers of economic growth and productivity - as well as providing a source of high value-added and well-paid jobs. Measurement equipment is heavily-used in R&D work. Modelling and simulation software isused extensively in industrial R&D as it helps speed up the process.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Privacy and data security risk may materialise if not addressed with suitable policies and processes.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Impact enablers

9.A
Facilitate sustainable and resilient infrastructure development in developing countries through enhanced financial, technological and technical support to African countries, least developed countries, landlocked developing countries and small island developing States arrow

Directly investable

9.B
Support domestic technology development, research and innovation in developing countries, including by ensuring a conducive policy environment for, inter alia, industrial diversification and value addition to commodities arrow

Directly investable

9.C
Significantly increase access to information and communications technology and strive to provide universal and affordable access to the Internet in least developed countries by 2020 arrow

Directly investable

arrow Back to the SDGs
10 Reduced
inequalities
SDG icon - No poverty
10.1
By 2030, progressively achieve and sustain income growth of the bottom 40 per cent of the population at a rate higher than the national average arrow

Product or service solution

Affordable education providers

Theory of change

Issue - A significant majority of households in developing countries - more than 75% of the population - are living in societies where income is more unequally distributed than it was in the 1990s. Income-inequality increased 11% on average in developing countries between 1990 and 2010 (UN). Evidence from developing countries shows that children in the poorest 20% of the populations are still up to three-times more likely to die before their fifth birthday than children in the richest quintiles (UN).

Contribution - By reducing inequality, the number of people on low incomes can be reduced. By supporting education and healthcare targetting at underserved populations income growth can be supported. Education has many benefits in terms of personal development, democratic life, but also for people's earnings. In the US, the gap in average real wages between individuals with a four-year college degree or graduate degree and high school graduates rose from 40-67% in 1980 to 72-120% as of 2015 (Valletta, 2016).

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Lack of skilled staff may limit the ability to deliver services.
  • Appropriate education outcomes - for instance, as measured by the OECD's Programme for International Student Assessment (or PISA) - may not be achieved.
  • Privacy and data security risk may materialise if not addressed with suitable policies and processes.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Education

10.2
By 2030, empower and promote the social, economic and political inclusion of all, irrespective of age, sex, disability, race, ethnicity, origin, religion or economic or other status arrow

Product or service solution

Micro-lending

Theory of change

Issue - Only 27% of people aged 15 plus have formal savings, and 11% have formal borrowing, according to the World Bank. Financial account ownership is lower among young adults, those with less education, women and poorer adults.

Contribution - Micro-lending focuses on expanding access to banking services to previously unbanked populations. While evidence of impact is context-dependent, there seems to be positive impacts on household consumption and women's health.

Impact risks

Evidence risks

  • There is still academic debate on the extent to which micro-lending has led to poverty reduction in some countries.

Execution risks

  • Excessively-high interest rates may undermine the impact of lending.
  • Aggressive bad debt collection practices may lead to negative social outcomes.
  • Lending to companies involved in controversial industries may create negative impacts.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Financial inclusion

10.3
Ensure equal opportunity and reduce inequalities of outcome, including by eliminating discriminatory laws, policies and practices and promoting appropriate legislation, policies and action in this regard arrow

Directly investable

10.4
Adopt policies, especially fiscal, wage and social protection policies, and progressively achieve greater equality arrow

Directly investable

10.5
Improve the regulation and monitoring of global financial markets and institutions and strengthen the implementation of such regulations arrow

Directly investable

10.6
Ensure enhanced representation and voice for developing countries in decision-making in global international economic and financial institutions in order to deliver more effective, credible, accountable and legitimate institutions arrow

Directly investable

10.7
Facilitate orderly, safe, regular and responsible migration and mobility of people, including through the implementation of planned and well-managed migration policies arrow

Directly investable

10.A
Implement the principle of special and differential treatment for developing countries, in particular least developed countries, in accordance with World Trade Organization agreements arrow

Directly investable

10.B
Encourage official development assistance and financial flows, including foreign direct investment, to States where the need is greatest, in particular least developed countries, African countries, small island developing States and landlocked developing countries, in accordance with their national plans and programmes arrow

Directly investable

10.C
By 2030, reduce to less than 3 per cent the transaction costs of migrant remittances and eliminate remittance corridors with costs higher than 5 per cent arrow

Directly investable

arrow Back to the SDGs
11 Sustainable cities
and communities
SDG icon - No poverty
11.1
By 2030, ensure access for all to adequate, safe and affordable housing and basic services and upgrade slums arrow

Product or service solution

Affordable housing

Theory of change

Issue - Affordable housing is usually defined as households who can afford to pay using no more than 30% of income. The number of low-income urban households affected today by lack of access is 330m, which could grow to 440m by 2025, according to McKinsey. The lack of affordable housing has many negative effects. Recruitment and retention problems can particularly affect lower-paid employees, such as key workers, with implications for the delivery of essential public services. High house prices can lead to longer commutes and increased congestion, which can have a negative impact on quality of life, with long-term implications for economic growth and sustainability.

Contribution - Loans targeted at low-income groups can help accelerate access to property ownership at an affordable cost. Affordable housing can also be offered through rental models, making it accessible at a reasonable monthly rate without the need for upfront capital.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Excessively-high interest rates for buying properties, or excessively-high rents may undermine the impact of lending.
  • Aggressive bad debt collection practices may lead to negative social outcomes.
  • Lending to companies involved in controversial industries may create negative impacts.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Financial inclusion

Product or service solution

Hospitals in developing countries

Theory of change

Issue - In 2010, 800m people spent over 10% of their household budget on healthcare, and 97m were pushed into extreme poverty by health spending (World Health Organisation). In 2016 alone, 7,000 newborn babies died every day. Newborn deaths made up 46% of all child deaths, an increase from 41% in 2000. Children in the poorest households are nearly twice as likely to die before the age of five than those from the richest. Most of these deaths are entirely preventable (UNICEF).

Contribution - Better-staffed health systems are linked with improved health outcomes. Better access to healthcare is closely correlated with higher scores in the Human Development Index. Prematurity, complications during labour and birth, and infections like sepsis, pneumonia, tetanus and diarrhoea are among the leading causes of death Ð all of which can be treated or prevented with simple, affordable solutions (UNICEF).

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Lack of skilled staff may limit the ability to deliver services.
  • Working conditions of healthcare professionals can be an issue.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Health & Well-being

Product or service solution

Education providers

Theory of change

Issue - Over 265m children are currently out of school and 22% of them are of primary school age (UN). Only 10% of adults reach post secondary education globally. Only half have primary education.

Contribution - Education has many benefits in terms of personal development, democratic life, but also people's earnings. In the US, the gap in average real wages between individuals with a four-year college degree or graduate degree and high school graduates rose from 40-67% in 1980 to 72-120% as of 2015 (Valletta, 2016).

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Lack of skilled staff may limit the ability to deliver services.
  • Appropriate education outcomes - for instance, as measured by the OECD's Programme for International Student Assessment (or PISA) - may not be achieved.
  • Privacy and data security risk may materialise if not addressed with suitable policies and processes.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Education

Product or service solution

Water utilities in developing countries

Theory of change

Issue - In 2015, 6.6bn people (over 90% of the worldÕs population) used improved drinking water sources and 4.9bn people (over two thirds of the worldÕs population) used improved sanitation facilities. In both cases, people without access live predominantly in rural areas. The global population using at least a basic drinking water service increased from 81 to 89% between 2000 and 2015. However, only one in five countries below 95% coverage in 2015 is on track to achieving universal basic water services by 2030.

Contribution - Every dollar spent on water and sewage infrastructure can have a multiplier effect of up to $5 (Institute of Civil Engineers). Three out of four jobs are directly or indirectly dependent on water security. For 80% of households in the developing world it is women and girls who collect water, which restricts their access to education and other economic opportunities, so improving access can be a factor in female empowerment in those countries (UN).

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • The environmental impact of chemicals used in water treatment may be uncertain.

Contribution risks

  • Greenhouse gas emissions relating to energy use in water treatment are substantial and contribute to climate change.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Water

11.2
By 2030, provide access to safe, affordable, accessible and sustainable transport systems for all, improving road safety, notably by expanding public transport, with special attention to the needs of those in vulnerable situations, women, children, persons with disabilities and older persons arrow

Product or service solution

Public transport infrastructure

Theory of change

Issue - As populations grow in urban environments, driven by urbanisation, pressure on public transport services and infrastructure grows.

Contribution - Improving transport infrastructure increases social mobility and economic development of a country.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Infrastructure provision in itself is not sufficient, it needs to be accessible and affordable.

Contribution risks

  • Improved infrastructure may lead to higher use and congestion, leading to unintended negative social and environmental impacts.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Future Mobility

Product or service solution

Electric vehicles

Theory of change

Issue - Transport represents 14% of global greenhouse gas emissions. In the EU, road transport contributes about one-fifth of the EU's total emissions of carbon dioxide. While these emissions fell by 3.3% in 2012, they are still 20.5% higher than in 1990. Transport is the only major sector in the EU where greenhouse gas emissions are still rising.

Contribution - Electric vehicles on average reduce carbon emissions by 30% globally (International Council on Clean Transportation). Carbon reductions are even more significant in countries where the power grid has a heavy fossil fuel content, like India or China. Electric vehicles have the potential to reduce carbon emissions by 10 gigatonnes.

Impact risks

Evidence risks

  • With electric vehicle technology changing rapidly, a wide range of vehicle electrification approaches and big differences between car manufacturers, the results of lifecycle analyses can vary greatly. Some studies point to a higher environmental impact of some electric vehicles especially when the power grid has high share of coal.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Labour, human rights standards and pollution in the minerals supply chain that most batteries rely on (3TGs - or Tungsten, Tantalum, Tin, and Gold - cobalt, lithium, rare earth) may be problematic

Contribution risks

  • Higher deployment of electric vehicles may lead to a rebound effect, with higher consumption levels undermining the improvements in energy efficiency of the grid.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Future mobility

Product or service solution

Fuel-cell vehicles

Theory of change

Issue - As populations grow in urban environments, driven by urbanisation, pressure on public transport services and infrastructure grows.

Contribution - The first commercially-available hydrogen-powered fuel cell car, the Hyundai Tucson Fuel Cell SUV, produces much lower global warming emissions than the modelÕs gasoline-powered version.

Impact risks

Evidence risk

  • There is an ongoing debate on whether the full life-cycle emissions of hydrogen is positive in terms of environmental impact.

Contribution risks

  • Hydrogen, to be truly low-carbon, needs to be produced from renewable energy, while today it is mostly made from natural gas.

Execution risks

  • Scalability may be constrained due to capital expenditure considerations for hydrogen-refuelling infrastructure.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Future mobility

Product or service solution

Advanced biofuels

Theory of change

Issue - As populations grow in urban environments, driven by urbanisation, pressure on public transport services and infrastructure grows.

Contribution - Renewable diesel produced from used vegetable oil or waste animal fats could reduce life-cycle carbon dioxide emissions by as much as 85%.

Impact risks

Evidence risks

  • Many advanced biofuelsmade from waste products are mixed with biofuels from crops, which have a negative full life-cycle carbon footprint including crop production and emissions from land-use change.

Contribution risks

  • While advanced biofuels use a resource that would have gone to landfills, their use still leads to greenhouse gas and fine particules emissions.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Future mobility

Product or service solution

Safety infrastructure

Theory of change

Issue - Road accidents are the ninth-biggest source of death globally, representing 2.5% of deaths, or 1.3m cases every year.

Contribution - Road safety infrastructure has contributed to the reduction of accidents. Fatalities per billion kilometers driven have fallen from nearly 40 in 1970 to around 10 today in Britain.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Working conditions of contruction staff and contractors.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Future mobility

Product or service solution

Vehicle safety

Theory of change

Issue - Road accidents are the ninth-largest source of death globally, representing 2.5% of deaths, or 1.3m cases every year. In the US, 90% of car accidents are thought to be caused by human error.

Contribution - Active safety products (as opposed to passive safety products such as seat belts, brakes etc) are gaining critical importance as cars become more autonomous. As cars transition along the autonomous vehicle spectrum, the responsibility for road safety will shift from the human driver towards full systems responsibility. The quality of sensors (such as cameras and radars) as well as underlying software will become key to road safety. Autonomous vehicles can also play a role: so far pilot tests have shown that autonomous vehicles have a much better safety performance than human-driven vehicles.

Impact risks

External risks

  • Data security and privacy issues may occur especially as vehicles get more digitally connected.

Execution risks

  • Poor product quality leading to product failure may undermine safety.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Future mobility

11.3
By 2030, enhance inclusive and sustainable urbanization and capacity for participatory, integrated and sustainable human settlement planning and management in all countries arrow

Directly investable

11.4
Strengthen efforts to protect and safeguard the worldÕs cultural and natural heritage arrow

Directly investable

11.5
By 2030, significantly reduce the number of deaths and the number of people affected and substantially decrease the direct economic losses relative to global gross domestic product caused by disasters, including water-related disasters, with a focus on protecting the poor and people in vulnerable situations arrow
11.6
By 2030, reduce the adverse per capita environmental impact of cities, including by paying special attention to air quality and municipal and other waste management arrow

Product or service solution

Waste collection, recycling and reuse

Theory of change

Issue - Growing population, rising standards of living, industrialisation, and production and consumption of new products are acting together to generate increasingly greater quantities of solid waste. The growing piles of waste are creating serious management and disposal problems. Without waste management there is an increased likelihood of disease spreading, which has a negative impact on population health.

Contribution - Waste management ensures recycling and re-use are possible, supporting a circular economy. Hazardous materials can be dealt with appropriately, reducing the negative impact on population health from the spread of disease.

Impact risks

Efficiency risks

  • Some recycling processes have a high environmental impact, especially when factoring in energy needs, which may be less attractive than using virgin materials in some cases.

Execution risks

  • Disposal of non-recyclable materials needs to be handled carefully in order to not generate pollution.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Working conditions of staff and contractors may be problematic, especially in terms of health and safety.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Circular economy

Product or service solution

Emission control technologies (ECT)

Theory of change

Issue - More than nine out of 10 people globally live in places where air pollution exceeds safe limits, according to research from the World Health Organization (WHO). Air pollution is the fourth-largest threat to human health, behind high blood pressure, dietary risks and smoking.

Contribution - Emission control technologies such as selective catalytic reduction, lean nitrogen oxides traps, and diesel particulate filters can reduce the emission of toxic particules and improve air quality.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Environmental impact of production and life-cycle impact of emission control technology products may have to be addressed.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Energy transition

Product or service solution

Electric vehicle (EV) infrastructure

Theory of change

Issue - With population growth and urbanisation comes an increase in the number of internal combustion engine vehicles on the road and therefore an increase in pollution.

Contribution - Potentially cleaner energy sources, such as electric vehicle batteries can reduce or eliminate carbon dixoide and nitrogen oxides emissions.

Impact risks

Evidence risks

  • With electric vehicle technology changing rapidly, a wide range of vehicle electrification approaches and big differences between car manufacturers, the results of lifecycle analyses can vary greatly.
  • Some studies point to a higher environmental impact of some electric vehicles especially when the power grid has high share of coal.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Labour, human rights standards and pollution in the minerals supply chain that most batteries rely on (3TGs - or Tungsten, Tantalum, Tin, and Gold - cobalt, lithium, rare earth) may be problematic.

Contribution risks

  • Higher deployment of electric vehicles may lead to a rebound effect, with higher consumption levels undermining the improvements in energy efficiency of the grid.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Future mobility

Product or service solution

Advanced biofuels

Theory of change

Issue - More than nine out of 10 people globally live in places where air pollution exceeds safe limits, according to research from the World Health Organization (WHO). Air pollution is the fourth-largest threat to human health, behind high blood pressure, dietary risks and smoking.

Contribution - Renewable diesel produced from used vegetable oil or waste animal fats could reduce life-cycle carbon dioxide emissions by as much as 85%.

Impact risks

Evidence risks

  • Many advanced biofuels made from waste products are mixed with biofuels from crops, which have a negative full life-cycle carbon footprint including crop production and emissions from land use change.

Contribution risks

  • While advanced biofuels use a resource that would have gone to landfills, their use still leads to greenhouse gas and fine particules emissions.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Energy transition

Product or service solution

Pooled systems (Sharing economy)

Theory of change

Issue - Many assets are underutilised, which is a wasteful use of resources. A prime example of this is light vehicles, which are unused 95% of the time (RAC Foundation).

Contribution - One shared car could replace approximately four to 13 personal cars. Accounting for potential increases in new car sales to car-sharing fleets and more heavy utilisation of shared cars, carbon dioxide emissions could be reduced by roughly 40 to 140kg per household per year from reduced production and maintenance of cars.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Privacy and data security risk may materialise if not addressed with suitable policies and processes.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Working conditions of contractual staff may not be sufficient, especially when excessively using short-term contracts.

Evidence risks

  • It may be difficult to clearly measure the impact of changes due to their diffuse nature and second-order effects.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Circular economy

Product or service solution

Air purification systems

Theory of change

Issue - About 92% of the worldÕs population lives in places where air pollution exceeds safe limits, according to research from the World Health Organization (WHO). Air pollution is the fourth-largest threat to human health, behind high blood pressure, dietary risks and smoking.

Contribution - Air purification systems are able to capture large amounts of allergens and dust particles in the air, leading to improved resipratory function (Vijayan et al, 2015).

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Greenhouse gas emissions from production of air purification systems and their whole life-cycle may need to be addressed.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Health & Wellbeing

11.7
By 2030, provide universal access to safe, inclusive and accessible, green and public spaces, in particular for women and children, older persons and persons with disabilities arrow

Directly investable

11.A
Support positive economic, social and environmental links between urban, per-urban and rural areas by strengthening national and regional development planning arrow

Directly investable

11.B
By 2020, substantially increase the number of cities and human settlements adopting and implementing integrated policies and plans towards inclusion, resource efficiency, mitigation and adaptation to climate change, resilience to disasters, and develop and implement, in line with the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030, holistic disaster risk management at all levels arrow

Directly investable

11.C
Support least developed countries, including through financial and technical assistance, in building sustainable and resilient buildings utilizing local materials arrow

Directly investable

arrow Back to the SDGs
12 Responsible consumption
and production
SDG icon - No poverty
12.1
Implement the 10-year framework of programmes on sustainable consumption and production, all countries taking action, with developed countries taking the lead, taking into account the development and capabilities of developing countries arrow

Directly investable

12.2
By 2030, achieve the sustainable management and efficient use of natural resources arrow

Product or service solution

Precision agriculture

Theory of change

Issue - Agricultural production will need to increase by 70% to meet global demand in 2050, according to the OECD. But yield gains have been consistently declining over the recent decades. Crop yields have been progressing at slightly more than 1% since the 1990. Technology adoption is very low in agriculture, leading to low productivity gains. Farmers typically favour 'tried-and-tested' techniques.

Contribution - Research reports indicate that there could be an 18% crop yield increase thanks to precision fertiliser application, 13% with precision planting, 13% with compaction reduction via fleets of smaller tractors, 4% with precision spraying (Goldman Sachs). This means that less land and chemicals would be required to produce the same amount of food.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability for farmers would reduce the breadth of positive impacts.

Contribution risks

  • Loss of biodiversity in intensive farming has historically been a major issue for ecosystems.
  • Groundwater contamination in intensive farming has historically been a major issue for ecosystems.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Food security

Product or service solution

Waste collection, recycling and reuse

Theory of change

Issue - Should the global population reach 9.6bn by 2050, the equivalent of almost three planets could be required to provide the natural resources needed to sustain current lifestyles (UN). In the OECD, recycling rates have been improving but are still at only about 25%.

Contribution - Recycling allows for a closed-loop system where less virgin resources are taken from the environment, limiting environmental degradation. If managed sustainably, scarce natural resources can benefit current and future generations. While the OECD recycling average is only 25%, countries like Germany or Taiwan are able to achieve the highest recycling rates of above 55%.

Impact risks

Efficiency risks

  • Some recycling processes have a high environmental impact, especially when factoring in energy needs, which may be less attractive than using virgin materials in some cases.

Execution risks

  • Disposal of non-recyclable materials needs to be handled carefully in order to not generate pollution.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Working conditions of staff and contractors may be problematic, especially in terms of health and safety.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Circular economy

Product or service solution

Pooled systems (sharing economy)

Theory of change

Issue - Many assets are underutilised, which is a wasteful use of resources. A prime example of this is light vehicles, which are unused 95% of the time (RAC Foundation).

Contribution - One shared car could replace approximately four to 13 personal cars. Accounting for potential increases in new car sales to car-sharing fleets and more heavy utilisation of shared cars, carbon dioxide emissions could be reduced by roughly 40 to 140kg per household per year from less production and maintenance of cars.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Privacy and data security risk may materialise if not addressed with suitable policies and processes.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Working conditions of contractual staff may not be sufficient, especially when excessively using short-term contracts.

Evidence risks

  • It may be difficult to clearly measure the impact of changes due to their diffuse nature and second-order effects

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Circular economy

12.3
By 2030, halve per capita global food waste at the retail and consumer levels and reduce food losses along production and supply chains, including post-harvest losses arrow

Product or service solution

Logistics and food preservation

Theory of change

Issue - Each year, an estimated one-third of all food produced Ð equivalent to 1.3bn tonnes worth around $1tn Ð ends up rotting in the bins of consumers and retailers, or spoiling due to poor transportation and harvesting practices, while almost 2bn go hungry or undernourished (UN).

Contribution - Investing in efficient, low-cost and sustainable processing technologies, adequate storage and packaging solutions, road infrastructure and market linkages can lead to a reduction in food loss and waste. Providing training and education to chain actors, including consumers, can also reduce food waste. Refrigeration, food preservatives, and other technologies can help improve the shelf life of perishable food products. Improved infrastructure and more efficient supply chains can also be a significant contributor to reducing food waste.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Working conditions of contractual staff may not be sufficient, especially when excessively using short-term contracts.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Food security

12.4
By 2020, achieve the environmentally sound management of chemicals and all wastes throughout their life cycle, in accordance with agreed international frameworks, and significantly reduce their release to air, water and soil in order to minimize their adverse impacts on human health and the environment arrow

Product or service solution

Green chemicals

Theory of change

Issue - Chemicals play an important part in many human activities (medicines, agriculture, industrial production) and the chemical industry is a major contributor to national economies. However, when chemicals are mismanaged the poorest communities face the highest risk due to their occupations, living conditions and limited access to uncontaminated food and water (UNDP).

Contribution - Managing chemicals reduces the risk of contamination of food and water and therefore improves population health. Principles around 'green chemistry' mark a fundamental change of approach. Instead of trying to clean up pollution, green chemistry is about preventing pollution in the first place. It is an approach that applies across all areas of chemistry and across the life-cycle of a chemical product, trying to minimise the use of harmful substances.

Impact risks

Evidence risks

  • The additionality of 'green chemicals' is hotly-debated, especially when taking into account the environmental impact on greenhouse gas emissions and land-use change as a result of plant-based chemicals.

Execution risks

  • Environmental impact of chemicals production over their life-cycle may be unfavourable.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Circular economy

Product or service solution

Precision agriculture

Theory of change

Issue - Agricultural production will need to increase by 70% to meet global demand in 2050, according to the OECD. But yield gains have been consistently declining over the recent decades. Crop yields have been progressing at slightly more than 1% since the 1990. Technology adoption is very low in agriculture, leading to low productivity gains. Farmers typically favour 'tried-and-tested' techniques.

Contribution - Research reports indicate that there could be an 18% crop yield increase thanks to precision fertiliser application, 13% with precision planting, 13% with compaction reduction via fleets of smaller tractors, 4% with precision spraying (Goldman Sachs). This means that less land and chemicals would be required to produce the same amount of food.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability for farmers would reduce the breadth of positive impacts.

Contribution risks

  • Loss of biodiversity in intensive farming has historically been a major issue for ecosystems.
  • Groundwater contamination in intensive farming has historically been a major issue for ecosystems.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Food Security

12.5
By 2030, substantially reduce waste generation through prevention, reduction, recycling and reuse arrow

Product or service solution

Waste collection, recycling and reuse

Theory of change

Issue - Should the global population reach 9.6bn by 2050, the equivalent of almost three planets could be required to provide the natural resources needed to sustain current lifestyles (UN). While recycling rates have been improving, they remain low (averaging 25% in OECD countries).

Contribution - Recycling allows for a closed-loop system where less virgin resources are required from the environment, thus limiting environmental degradation. If managed sustainably scarce natural resources can benefit current and future generations. While the OECD recycling average is only 25%, countries like Germany or Taiwan are able to achieve the highest recycling rates of above 55%.

Impact risks

Efficiency risks

  • Some recycling processes have a high environmental impact, especially when factoring in energy needs, which may be less attractive than using virgin materials in some cases.

Execution risks

  • Disposal of non-recyclable materials needs to be handled carefully in order to not generate pollution.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Working conditions of staff and contractors may be problematic, especially in terms of health and safety.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Circular economy

Product or service solution

Logistics and food preservation

Theory of change

Issue - Each year, an estimated one-third of all food produced Ð equivalent to 1.3bn tonnes worth around $1tn Ð ends up rotting in the bins of consumers and retailers, or spoiling due to poor transportation and harvesting practices, while almost 2bn go hungry or undernourished (UN).

Contribution - Investing in efficient, low-cost and sustainable processing technologies, adequate storage and packaging solutions, road infrastructure and market linkages can lead to a reduction in food loss and waste. Providing training and education to chain actors, including consumers, can also reduce food waste. Refrigeration, food preservatives, and other technologies can help improve the shelf life of perishable food products. Improved infrastructure and more efficient supply chains can also be a significant contributor to reducing food waste.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Working conditions of contractual staff may not be sufficient, especially when excessively using short-term contracts.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Circular economy

12.6
Encourage companies, especially large and transnational companies, to adopt sustainable practices and to integrate sustainability information into their reporting cycle arrow

Directly investable

12.7
Promote public procurement practices that are sustainable, in accordance with national policies and priorities arrow

Directly investable

12.8
By 2030, ensure that people everywhere have the relevant information and awareness for sustainable development and lifestyles in harmony with nature arrow

Directly investable

12.A
Support developing countries to strengthen their scientific and technological capacity to move towards more sustainable patterns of consumption and production arrow

Directly investable

12.B
Develop and implement tools to monitor sustainable development impacts for sustainable tourism that creates jobs and promotes local culture and products arrow

Directly investable

arrow Back to the SDGs
13 Climate
action
SDG icon - No poverty
13.1
Strengthen resilience and adaptive capacity to climate-related hazards and natural disasters in all countries arrow

Product or service solution

Flow efficiency

Theory of change

Issue - Efficiency in water use is becoming increasingly critical to the sustainability of economy activities. Global water demand for the manufacturing industry is expected to increase by 400% from 2000 to 2050. Energy production is generally water-intensive. Meeting ever-growing demands for energy will generate increasing stress on freshwater resources with repercussions on other users, such as agriculture and industry. This stress will be exacerbated by climate change.

Contribution - Water systems that are able to deal more effectively with stormwater are better-equiped to handle climate-related hazards that put high strain on water networks.

Impact risks

Contribution risks

  • Carbon emissions linked to manufacturing of flow efficiency products may contribute to global anthropogenic forcing.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Water

13.2
Integrate climate change measures into national policies, strategies and planning arrow

Directly investable

13.3
Improve education, awareness-raising and human and institutional capacity on climate change mitigation, adaptation, impact reduction and early warning arrow

Directly investable

13.A
Implement the commitment undertaken by developed-country parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change to a goal of mobilizing jointly $100 billion annually by 2020 from all sources to address the needs of developing countries in the context of meaningful mitigation actions and transparency on implementation and fully operationalize the Green Climate Fund through its capitalization as soon as possible arrow

Directly investable

13.B
Promote mechanisms for raising capacity for effective climate change-related planning and management in least developed countries and small island developing States, including focusing on women, youth and local and marginalized communities

* Acknowledging that the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change is the primary international, intergovernmental forum for negotiating the global response to climate change. arrow

Directly investable

arrow Back to the SDGs
14 Life
below water
SDG icon - No poverty
14.1
By 2025, prevent and significantly reduce marine pollution of all kinds, in particular from land-based activities, including marine debris and nutrient pollution arrow

Product or service solution

Biodegradable and bio-based plastics

Theory of change

Issue - As much as 40% of the world's oceans are heavily affected by human activities, including pollution, depleted fisheries, and loss of coastal habitats. At the same time, over 3bn people depend on marine and coastal biodiversity for their livelihoods. Sea pollution such as plastic packaging in oceans or fertiliser leaching into rivers has a negative impact on marine ecosystems, potentially reducing biodiversity.

Contribution - Plastic can take a very long time to break down once discarded, leading to significant problems with landfill waste and posing a danger to wildlife. Biodegradable plastics use alternate materials or specialised enzyme or chemical reactions to break down materials quickly once exposed to the elements. This technology offers a number of advantages over traditional plastic materials including: waste reduction; reduced feedstock demand for oil-based polymers; and lower greenhouse gas emissions from production.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Degradation is highly dependent on environmental conditions - for example, plastic breakdown will only occur at temperatures above 50 degrees Centigrade - assuming it is not taking place in the ocean (according to the UNEP Chief Scientist).
  • Some biodegradable additives (which allow the material to break down) may also make the recycling of biodegradable plastic more difficult.

Evidence risks

  • The additionality of bio-based plastics is hotly-debated, especially when taking into account the environmental impact on greenhouse gas emissions and land-use change as a result of plant-based chemicals.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Circular economy

Product or service solution

Waste collection, recycling and reuse

Theory of change

Issue - As much as 40% of the world's oceans are heavily affected by human activities, including pollution, depleted fisheries, and loss of coastal habitats. At the same time, over 3bn people depend on marine and coastal biodiversity for their livelihoods. Sea pollution such as plastic packaging in oceans or fertiliser leaching into rivers has a negative impact on marine ecosystems, potentially reducing biodiversity.

Contribution - Recycling allows for a closed-loop system where less virgin resources are required from the environment, thus limiting environmental degradation. If managed sustainably, scarce natural resources can benefit current and future generations. While the OECD recycling average is only 25%, countries like Germany or Taiwan are able to achieve the highest recycling rates of above 55%.

Impact risks

Efficiency risks

  • Some recycling processes have a high environmental impact, especially when factoring in energy needs, which may be less attractive than using virgin materials in some cases.

Execution risks

  • Disposal of non-recyclable materials needs to be handled carefully in order to not generate pollution.

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Working conditions of staff and contractors may be problematic, especially in terms of health and safety.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Circular economy

Product or service solution

Sustainable aquaculture

Theory of change

Issue - Acquaculture, when not done sustainably, can result in the use of high levels of chemicals and waste, which can impact marine ecosystems.

Contribution - According to the UN's Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), aquaculture is among the most sustainable of animal protein production systems. It does not use land, and has a much lower carbon footprint than any kind of animal protein. Sustainable aquaculture does not use antibiotics and other chemicals that could be harmful to the marine ecosystem.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Disease, such as sealice infection, is a major risk.

Contribution risks

  • Pollution of oceans from feed and other chemicals, as well as biosecurity, are an issue.
  • Excessive use of antibiotics leading to antimicrobial resistance has been common.
  • Contribution to overfishing if wild stock of smaller fish are used as feed.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Food security

Product or service solution

Precision agriculture

Theory of change

Issue - Intensive agricultural farming can result in leaching of pesticides, fungicides, herbicides into marine ecosystems. Agricultural production will need to increase by 70% to meet global demand in 2050, according to the OECD. But yield gains have been consistently declining over the recent decades.

Contribution - Research reports indicate that there could be an 18% crop yield increase thanks to precision fertiliser application, 13% with precision planting, 13% with compaction reduction via fleets of smaller tractors, 4% with precision spraying (Goldman Sachs). This means that less land and chemicals would be required to produce the same amount of food, and therefore less risk of leaching into marine ecosystems.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability for farmers would reduce the breadth of positive impacts.

Contribution risks

  • Loss of biodiversity in intensive farming has historically been a major issue for ecosystems.
  • Groundwater contamination in intensive farming has historically been a major issue for ecosystems.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Food security

Product or service solution

Organic food production

Theory of change

Issue - Intensive conventional agricultural farming can result in leaching of pesticides, fungicides, herbicides into marine ecosystems.

Contribution - Systematic reviews of academic studies have uncovered strong evidence that organic agriculture improves soil quality, biodiversity, and some indications that it also improves water quality, lowers greenhouse gas emissions and reduces farmers' pesticide exposure.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Execution risks

  • Food safety issues with food-borne disease.

Evidence risks

  • Lack of conclusive evidence regarding health benefits of organic versus non-organic food.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Food security

Product or service solution

Organic food retail

Theory of change

Issue - Intensive conventional agricultural farming can result in leaching of pesticides, fungicides, herbicides into marine ecosystems.

Contribution - Systematic reviews of academic studies have uncovered strong evidence that organic agriculture improves soil quality, biodiversity, and some indications that it also improves water quality, lowers greenhouse gas emissions and reduces farmers' pesticide exposure.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Execution risks

  • Food safety issues with food-borne disease.

Evidence risks

  • Lack of conclusive evidence regarding health benefits of organic vs non-organic food.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Food security

14.2
By 2020, sustainably manage and protect marine and coastal ecosystems to avoid significant adverse impacts, including by strengthening their resilience, and take action for their restoration in order to achieve healthy and productive oceans arrow

Product or service solution

Sustainable aquaculture

Theory of change

Issue - Overfishing remains a big issue in some marine ecosystems, leading to disruption in food chains and ultimately depletion of stocks. Productive oceans are important from a food security perspective as alternative protein sources are highly-inefficient. Beef production, in particular, requires 10-times more land use and greenhouse gas emissions than farmed fish (WRI, 2016).

Contribution - Sustainable aquaculture is part of the solution to help reduce pressure on fish stocks. Active fishery management and regular observation of fish stocks contributes to their recovery. According to the UN's Food and Agriculture Organisation, aquaculture is among the most sustainable of animal protein production systems. It does not use land, and has a much lower carbon footprint than any kind of animal protein.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Disease, such as sealice infection, is a major risk

Contribution risks

  • Pollution of oceans from feed and other chemicals, as well as biosecurity, are an issue.
  • Excessive use of antibiotics leading to antimicrobial resistance has been common.
  • Contribution to overfishing if wild stock of smaller fish are used as feed.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Food security

14.3
Minimize and address the impacts of ocean acidification, including through enhanced scientific cooperation at all levels arrow

Directly investable

14.4
By 2020, effectively regulate harvesting and end overfishing, illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing and destructive fishing practices and implement science-based management plans, in order to restore fish stocks in the shortest time feasible, at least to levels that can produce maximum sustainable yield as determined by their biological characteristics arrow

Directly investable

14.5
By 2020, conserve at least 10 per cent of coastal and marine areas, consistent with national and international law and based on the best available scientific information arrow

Directly investable

14.6
By 2020, prohibit certain forms of fisheries subsidies which contribute to overcapacity and overfishing, eliminate subsidies that contribute to illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing and refrain from introducing new such subsidies, recognizing that appropriate and effective special and differential treatment for developing and least developed countries should be an integral part of the World Trade Organization fisheries subsidies negotiation arrow

Directly investable

Impact theme icon Impact theme - xxxx

14.7
By 2030, increase the economic benefits to Small Island developing States and least developed countries from the sustainable use of marine resources, including through sustainable management of fisheries, aquaculture and tourism arrow

Directly investable

14.A
Increase scientific knowledge, develop research capacity and transfer marine technology, taking into account the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission Criteria and Guidelines on the Transfer of Marine Technology, in order to improve ocean health and to enhance the contribution of marine biodiversity to the development of developing countries, in particular small island developing States and least developed countries arrow

Directly investable

14.B
Provide access for small-scale artisanal fishers to marine resources and markets arrow

Directly investable

14.C
Enhance the conservation and sustainable use of oceans and their resources by implementing international law as reflected in UNCLOS, which provides the legal framework for the conservation and sustainable use of oceans and their resources, as recalled in paragraph 158 of The Future We Want arrow

Directly investable

arrow Back to the SDGs
15 Life
on land
SDG icon - No poverty
15.1
By 2020, ensure the conservation, restoration and sustainable use of terrestrial and inland freshwater ecosystems and their services, in particular forests, wetlands, mountains and drylands, in line with obligations under international agreements arrow

Directly investable

15.2
By 2020, promote the implementation of sustainable management of all types of forests, halt deforestation, restore degraded forests and substantially increase afforestation and reforestation globally arrow

Product or service solution

Sustainable forestry

Theory of change

Issue - Around 1.6bn people depend on forests for their livelihood, including some 70m indigenous people. Forests are also home to more than 80% of all terrestrial species of animals, plants and insects (UN). Deforestation is a major issue facing the world, with the planet's forests being depleted rapidly. The planet has lost 1.3m square kilometers of forest from 1990 to 2015 - an area larger than South Africa, according to data published by the World Bank.

Contribution - Increasing or maintaining the forest cover is a key part of any scenario to mitigate climate change; forests function as carbon dioxide sink. Shell's 'Sky scenario', for instance, which limits global warming by 1.75 degrees centrigrade, would require planting trees on an area the size of Brazil. Analysis from The Nature Conservancy, World Resources Institute and others, indicates that stopping deforestation, restoring forests and improving forestry practices could cost-effectively remove 7bn metric tons of carbon dioxide annually, or as much as eliminating 1.5bn cars-more than all of the cars in the world today.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Impact on local communities when forestry competes with other activities.

Evidence risks

  • Sustainable management policies for forestry can sometimes have the opposite effect (Brandt et al, 2017).
  • The environmental benefit of managed forestries is highly-dependent on location and species.

Contribution risks

  • Clearing primary forests with high carbon content to replace with managed forestry would have a negative climate impact.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Circular economy

15.3
By 2030, combat desertification, restore degraded land and soil, including land affected by desertification, drought and floods, and strive to achieve a land degradation-neutral world arrow

Product or service solution

Plant-based foods

Theory of change

Issue - Population growth places increasing pressure on scarce natural resources. Agriculture accounts for 92% of the freshwater footprint of humanity; almost one-third relates to animal products. Mekonnen and Hoekstra (2012) show that animal products have a large water footprint relative to crop products. More than 80% of farmland is used for livestock but it produces just 18% of food calories (Poore & Nemecek, Science Journal 2018).

Contribution - There is strong evidence supporting plant based diets as a sustainable solution to helping to reduce food shortages, land degradation and fresh water intake (Webber, 2017). The lower land use footprint also means that fewer chemicals are necessary to be used to produce the same amount of protein, reducing the risk of contaminating rivers.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Negative externalities of intensive crop farming.
  • There are potential nutritional deficiencies from strict vegan diets.

Contribution risks

  • Some forms of animal farming, such as silvopasture and managed grazing, can have positive environmental impact including climate change mitigation.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Food security

Product or service solution

Precision agriculture

Theory of change

Issue - Crop yields are not rising fast enough to meet anticipated future crop demand by 2050 (Deepak et al, 2013). Crop yields have been progressing at circa 1% since the 1990, unless this rate more than doubles to 2.5%, there is expected to be a shortfall to meet projected crop demand. Technology adoption is very low in agriculture, leading to low productivity gains. Farmers typically favour 'tried-and-tested' techniques.

Contribution - Research reports indicate that there could be an 18% crop yield increase thanks to precision fertiliser application, 13% with precision planting, 13% with compaction reduction via fleets of smaller tractors, 4% with precision spraying (Goldman Sachs). This means that less land and chemicals would be required to produce the same amount of food.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability for farmers would reduce the breadth of positive impacts.

Contribution risks

  • Loss of biodiversity in intensive farming has historically been a major issue for ecosystems.
  • Groundwater contamination in intensive farming has historically been a major issue for ecosystems.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Food security

Product or service solution

Flow efficiency

Theory of change

Issue - Efficiency in water use is increasingly critical to the sustainability of economic activities. Global water demand for the manufacturing industry is expected to increase by 400% from 2000 to 2050 (OECD estimates). Energy production is generally water-intensive. Meeting ever-growing demands for energy will generate increasing stress on freshwater resources with repercussions on other users, such as agriculture and industry.

Contribution - Increasing water-use efficiency over time means decoupling economic growth from water use across the main water-using sectors of agriculture, industry, energy and municipal water supply. This has strong synergies with sustainable food production (Sustainable Development Goal 2 - or SDG 2), economic growth (SDG 8), infrastructure and industrialisation (SDG 9), cities and human settlements (SDG 11) and consumption and production (SDG 15).

Impact risks

Contribution risks

  • Carbon emissions linked to manufacturing of flow efficiency products may contribute to global anthropogenic forcing.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Water

Product or service solution

Organic food production

Theory of change

Issue - 2.6bn people depend directly on agriculture, but 52% of the land used for agriculture is moderately or severely affected by soil degradation. Due to drought and desertification each year 12m hectares are lost (23 hectares per minute), where 20m tons of grain could have been grown. One of the consequences of climate change is desertification, can result in a reduction of land available for agricultural production. Agricultural production will need to increase by 70% to meet global demand in 2050, according to the OECD.

Contribution - Systematic reviews of academic studies show strong evidence that organic agriculture improves soil quality, biodiversity, and some evidence that it also improves water quality, reduces greenhouse gas emissions and reduces farmers' pesticide exposure.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Execution risks

  • Food safety issues with food-borne disease.

Evidence risks

  • Lack of conclusive evidence regarding health benefits of organic vs non-organic food.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Food security

Product or service solution

Organic food retail

Theory of change

Issue - 2.6bn people depend directly on agriculture, but 52% of the land used for agriculture is moderately or severely affected by soil degradation. Due to drought and desertification each year 12m hectares are lost (23 hectares per minute), where 20m tons of grain could have been grown. One of the consequences of climate change is desertification, can result in a reduction of land available for agricultural production. Agricultural production will need to increase by 70% to meet global demand in 2050, according to the OECD.

Contribution - Systematic reviews of academic studies show strong evidence that organic agriculture improves soil quality, biodiversity, and some evidence that it also improves water quality, reduces greenhouse gas emissions and reduces farmers' pesticide exposure.

Impact risks

Stakeholder participation risks

  • Lack of affordability may limit access and impact.

Execution risks

  • Food safety issues with food-borne disease.

Evidence risks

  • Lack of conclusive evidence regarding health benefits of organic vs non-organic food.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Food security

Product or service solution

Sustainable aquaculture

Theory of change

Issue - Livestock and poultry farming are highly-inefficient ways of creating proteins for human consumption. Beef production, in particular, requires 10-times more land use and greenhouse gas emissions than farmed fish (World Resources Institute, 2016).

Contribution - According to the UN's Food and Agriculture Organisation, aquaculture is among the most sustainable of animal protein production systems. It does not use land, and has a much lower carbon footprint than any kind of animal protein.

Impact risks

Execution risks

  • Disease, such as sealice infection, is a major risk

Contribution risks

  • Pollution of oceans from feed and other chemicals, as well as biosecurity, are an issue.
  • Excessive use of antibiotics leading to antimicrobial resistance has been common.
  • Contribution to overfishing if wild stock of smaller fish are used as feed.

Impact theme

Impact theme icon - Food security

15.4
By 2030, ensure the conservation of mountain ecosystems, including their biodiversity, in order to enhance their capacity to provide benefits that are essential for sustainable development arrow

Directly investable

15.5
Take urgent and significant action to reduce the degradation of natural habitats, halt the loss of biodiversity and, by 2020, protect and prevent the extinction of threatened species arrow

Directly investable

15.6
Promote fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising from the utilization of genetic resources and promote appropriate access to such resources, as internationally agreed arrow

Directly investable

15.7
Take urgent action to end poaching and trafficking of protected species of flora and fauna and address both demand and supply of illegal wildlife products arrow

Directly investable

15.8
By 2020, introduce measures to prevent the introduction and significantly reduce the impact of invasive alien species on land and water ecosystems and control or eradicate the priority species arrow

Directly investable

15.9
By 2020, integrate ecosystem and biodiversity values into national and local planning, development processes, poverty reduction strategies and accounts arrow

Directly investable

15.A
Mobilize and significantly increase financial resources from all sources to conserve and sustainably use biodiversity and ecosystems arrow

Directly investable

15.B
Mobilize significant resources from all sources and at all levels to finance sustainable forest management and provide adequate incentives to developing countries to advance such management, including for conservation and reforestation arrow

Directly investable

15.C
Enhance global support for efforts to combat poaching and trafficking of protected species, including by increasing the capacity of local communities to pursue sustainable livelihood opportunities arrow

Directly investable

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16 Peace, justice
and strong institutions
SDG icon - No poverty
16.1
Significantly reduce all forms of violence and related death rates everywhere arrow

Directly investable

16.2
End abuse, exploitation, trafficking and all forms of violence against and torture of children arrow

Directly investable

16.3
Promote the rule of law at the national and international levels and ensure equal access to justice for all arrow

Directly investable

16.4
By 2030, significantly reduce illicit financial and arms flows, strengthen the recovery and return of stolen assets and combat all forms of organized crime arrow

Directly investable

16.5
Substantially reduce corruption and bribery in all their forms arrow

Directly investable

16.6
Develop effective, accountable and transparent institutions at all levels arrow

Directly investable

16.7
Ensure responsive, inclusive, participatory and representative decision-making at all levels arrow

Directly investable

16.8
Broaden and strengthen the participation of developing countries in the institutions of global governance arrow

Directly investable

16.9
By 2030, provide legal identity for all, including birth registration arrow

Directly investable

16.10
Ensure public access to information and protect fundamental freedoms, in accordance with national legislation and international agreements arrow

Directly investable

16.A
Strengthen relevant national institutions, including through international cooperation, for building capacity at all levels, in particular in developing countries, to prevent violence and combat terrorism and crime arrow

Directly investable

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17 Partnerships
for the goals
SDG icon - No poverty
17.1
Strengthen domestic resource mobilization, including through international support to developing countries, to improve domestic capacity for tax and other revenue collection arrow

Directly investable

17.2
Developed countries to implement fully their official development assistance commitments, including the commitment by many developed countries to achieve the target of 0.7 per cent of ODA/GNI to developing countries and 0.15 to 0.20 per cent of ODA/GNI to least developed countries; ODA providers are encouraged to consider setting a target to provide at least 0.20 per cent of ODA/GNI to least developed countries arrow

Directly investable

17.3
Mobilize additional financial resources for developing countries from multiple sources arrow

Directly investable

17.4
Assist developing countries in attaining long-term debt sustainability through coordinated policies aimed at fostering debt financing, debt relief and debt restructuring, as appropriate, and address the external debt of highly indebted poor countries to reduce debt distress arrow

Directly investable

17.5
Adopt and implement investment promotion regimes for least developed countries arrow

Directly investable

17.6
Enhance North-South, South-South and triangular regional and international cooperation on and access to science, technology and innovation and enhance knowledge sharing on mutually agreed terms, including through improved coordination among existing mechanisms, in particular at the United Nations level, and through a global technology facilitation mechanism arrow

Directly investable

17.7
Promote the development, transfer, dissemination and diffusion of environmentally sound technologies to developing countries on favourable terms, including on concessional and preferential terms, as mutually agreed arrow

Directly investable

17.8
Fully operationalize the technology bank and science, technology and innovation capacity-building mechanism for least developed countries by 2017 and enhance the use of enabling technology, in particular information and communications technology arrow

Directly investable

17.9
Enhance international support for implementing effective and targeted capacity-building in developing countries to support national plans to implement all the sustainable development goals, including through North-South, South-South and triangular cooperation arrow

Directly investable

17.10
Promote a universal, rules-based, open, non-discriminatory and equitable multilateral trading system under the World Trade Organization, including through the conclusion of negotiations under its Doha Development Agenda arrow

Directly investable

17.11
Significantly increase the exports of developing countries, in particular with a view to doubling the least developed countriesÕ share of global exports by 2020 arrow

Directly investable

17.12
Realize timely implementation of duty-free and quota-free market access on a lasting basis for all least developed countries, consistent with World Trade Organization decisions, including by ensuring that preferential rules of origin applicable to imports from least developed countries are transparent and simple, and contribute to facilitating market access arrow

Directly investable

17.13
Enhance global macroeconomic stability, including through policy coordination and policy coherence arrow

Directly investable

17.14
Enhance policy coherence for sustainable development arrow

Directly investable

17.15
Respect each countryÕs policy space and leadership to establish and implement policies for poverty eradication and sustainable development

Multi-stakeholder partnerships arrow

Directly investable

17.16
Enhance the global partnership for sustainable development, complemented by multi-stakeholder partnerships that mobilize and share knowledge, expertise, technology and financial resources, to support the achievement of the sustainable development goals in all countries, in particular developing countries arrow

Directly investable

17.17
Encourage and promote effective public, public-private and civil society partnerships, building on the experience and resourcing strategies of partnerships

Data, monitoring and accountability arrow

Directly investable

17.18
By 2020, enhance capacity-building support to developing countries, including for least developed countries and small island developing States, to increase significantly the availability of high-quality, timely and reliable data disaggregated by income, gender, age, race, ethnicity, migratory status, disability, geographic location and other characteristics relevant in national contexts arrow

Directly investable

17.19
By 2030, build on existing initiatives to develop measurements of progress on sustainable development that complement gross domestic product, and support statistical capacity-building in developing countries arrow

Directly investable

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For insights into the rationale, development and our future plans for the SDG Investing Taxonomy, please read our explanatory commentary.

To solve global challenges, we must all collaborate

The Hermes SDG Taxonomy has been created by investors, for investors. We welcome your insights and suggestions in order to help us make it a valuable resource for all investors mindful of the impacts and opportunities connected with the SDGs.