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Sustainable Development Goal 8

Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment, and decent work for all.

The UN reports marked progress reducing poverty in recent decades, with about one in 10 people living at or below the equivalent of $1.90 a day in 2013, down from 35% in 1990 and 44% in 1981. Yet hundreds of millions of people have yet to share in the benefits of global growth. The International Labor Organization reports that many regions continue to experience high unemployment rates and poor-quality jobs.

Multiple WRI initiatives support a shift to sustainable and inclusive growth patterns that avoid greenhouse gas emissions and environmental degradation (SDG 8.4), create employment opportunities for all and reduce inequality (SDG 8.3, SDG 8.5, SDG 8.6). The New Climate Economy project shows how transitioning to a low-carbon economy could lead to stronger, more sustainable and inclusive economic growth, including generating 65 million low-carbon jobs and avoiding 700,000 premature deaths from air pollution in 2030.

Our Climate Program provides tools and guidance to support national and sub-national governments in integrating the SDGs and climate goals, planning for a just transition to sustainability and ensuring no one is left behind (SDG 8.3, SDG 8.8). WRI’s Business Center works with corporations to help them transform their growth models for greater sustainability and productivity, using science-based sustainability targets and greater resource efficiency (SDG 8.4). Our Finance Center builds the economic case for sustainable investments through our research on Greening Private Finance.


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This guidance provides recommendations for companies in the apparel and footwear sector to set science-based greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets. It provides case studies on best practices in target setting and strategies for achieving emissions reductions.

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