Illustration based on a design from Azote Images (Jerker Lokrantz) for Stockholm Resilience Centre.

 

UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015 the UN member states adopted the 2030 Agenda, a universal agenda that encompasses 17 sustainable development goals (SDGs). These goals cover social, economic and environmental sustainability.

We only have one planet and it is only by sustainable use of the Earth’s resources that humanity can survive. This is made clear by Johan Rockström and Pavan Sukhdev from the Stockholm Resilience Centre in their ‘wedding cake’ model, produced to show the importance of protecting the world’s resources to secure food supplies. The lowest level, the base, represents goals linked to environmental sustainability. The centre contains the social goals, with the economic ones higher up. The planet sets the limits and these are non-negotiable.

Even if Holmen’s operations are more geared towards sustainable consumption than sustainable food supplies, the principle of the importance of sustainable management of the world’s resources remains the same. Sustainable bio-based operations and innovation within the planet’s limits are crucial to combat climate change and thus fundamental to attaining the social and economic goals.

Holmen and the SDGs

The basis of Holmen’s operations is active forestry where the growing forest absorbs carbon and provides industry with renewable raw materials. The forest raw material is turned into products that bind carbon and can replace fossil-based plastic packaging and climate-negative construction material. We protect biodiversity and we work actively to cut emissions to air and water.

Although we have come a long way in our work on sustainability, challenges still remain. Water consumption, transport and the right to manage our forests are key questions that Holmen, like other forest industry businesses, is actively monitoring and working on.

Holmen’s mission is to create a sustainable future. One of the ways in which we do this is by contributing towards several of the UN’s sustainable development goals (SDGs). With carbon-positive operations, climate-smart products and a long-term environmental approach, our foremost contributions are linked to SDGs 13, 14 and 15. These are goals that are fundamental to all life on Earth. But our work cannot stand alone. For the climate and environmental benefits to be realised, our partnerships and relationships with customers and suppliers are central. For this reason, SDG 17, which covers implementation and partnership, is an important aspect of our work for a sustainable future.