Let’s start by getting to know some basic terms in this regard:
Standard of Living: This term includes the availability of necessities, material goods, comfort, and state of wealth to a particular geographic area or socioeconomic class.
Poverty: It is defined as a state of a person who lacks enough financial resources to meet the need for the least standard of living. Financial resources include wages, material assets, essentials, etc.
Environment: The environment is defined as the whole ecosystem of living and nonliving things that shows impacts on human life. The living things include birds, fishes, forests, plants animals, etc. The nonliving things include air, water, sunlight, soil, rocks, etc.
Poverty Line: The poverty line is also known as the breadline, poverty limit, or poverty threshold. This term is defined as the least amount of wages counted sufficient in a specific country. It is estimated by calculating the sum cost of all vital resources that are consumed by an average adult human per year.
Sustainable Goals: The sustainable goals are also known as global goals that are based on 17 interconnected goals specially outlined with a mission statement “A blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all by 2030”. The United Nations General Assembly planned these sustainable goals in 2015 to be achieved before 2030.
The 17 sustainable goals are mentioned below.
- No Poverty,
- Zero Hunger
- Good Health and Well-being
- Quality Education
- Gender Equality
- Clean Water and Sanitation
- Affordable and Clean Energy
- Decent Work and Economic Growth
- Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure
- Reducing Inequality
- Sustainable Cities and Communities
- Responsible Consumption and Production
- Climate Action
- Life Below Water
- Life On Land
- Peace, Justice, and Strong Institutions
- Partnerships for the Goals.
People living in Poverty
According to the latest estimates of the World Bank, global poverty is being accounted for 9.2% of the world. It is reported that nearly 689 million people are spending 1.90 dollars per day and living in extreme poverty. And sadly, these people are the ones most vulnerable to climate change, pollution, extreme weather events and related environmental issues. This is an environmental justice issue. To know more about it: Environment Discrimination and the Importance of Environmental Justice and What is Climate Justice and Why Is It Important?
The Disastrous Link Between Poverty and The Environment
There is a disastrous link between poverty and the environment. It can be evaluated in a very simple statement that underdeveloped nations suffer more than developed nations. Developed countries or wealthy nations are responsible for environmental degradation such as climate change, global warming, etc, and developing countries or poor nations are facing the consequences of environmental damages.
There is an article that has highlighted the top 10 companies contributing to one-third of global carbon emissions leading to climate change driven by global warming. Also, there are 15 countries in the world that are generating high percentages of food waste.
People all around the world despite their socioeconomic class depend on natural resources, food, and water to stay alive. Economic development anywhere on the Earth is directly dependent on natural resources. Overexploitation of natural resources results in environmental degradation and depleting natural reserves. Poor people don’t have adequate material resources/ income so they completely rely on natural resources for the standard of livings.
Poverty puts stress on the environment. It is a matter of fact that the degraded environment due to overexploitation of natural reserves shows impacts on the poor communities. It causes health problems among poor people while wealthy communities can rely on material resources/income to meet the standard of livings. Keeping the first goal of sustainable development in view, it is concluded that alleviating poverty from the world could be the possible solution for preventing environmental degradation.
You might also like to read: What Is Green Colonialism? – Everything You Need To Know
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