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Geology and the sustainable development goals

Gill, Joel C. ORCID: 2017. Geology and the sustainable development goals. Episodes 40 (1) , pp. 70-76. 10.18814/epiiugs/2017/v40i1/017010

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This paper presents an overview and visualisation of the role of geology in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). These internationally-agreed goals aim to eradicate global poverty, end unsustainable consumption patterns, and facilitate sustained and inclusive growth, social development, and environmental protection. Through a matrix visualisation, this paper presents a synthesis that relates the 17 agreed SDGs to 11 key aspects of geology. Aspects considered are agrogeology, climate change, energy, engineering geology, geohazards, geoheritage and geotourism, hydrogeology and contaminant geology, mineral and rock resources, geoeducation, geological capacity building, and a miscellaneous category. The matrix demonstrates that geologists have a role in achieving all 17 of the SDGs. Three topics relating to improved engagement by geologists with international development are then highlighted for discussion. These are the development of supporting skills in education, improving transnational research collaborations, and ensuring respectful capacity building initiatives. This synthesis can help mobilise the broader geology community to engage in the SDGs, allowing those working on specific aspects of geology to consider their work in the context of sustainable development. The contribution that geologists can make to sustainable development is also demonstrated to other relevant disciplines, and development policy and practitioner communities.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Published Online
Status: Published
Schools: Earth and Environmental Sciences
Additional Information: This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License (
Publisher: International Union of Geological Sciences
ISSN: 0705-3797
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 19 August 2022
Date of Acceptance: 19 February 2016
Last Modified: 05 May 2023 21:53

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