Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

The IAEA plays an active part in helping the international community achieve the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). It helps countries to use nuclear and isotopic techniques and thereby contribute directly to attaining nine of the 17 Goals.

End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture

Through the IAEA, and its partnership with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), countries around the world are improving food security and agriculture by using nuclear and isotopic techniques to protect plants from insect pests and to breed new plant varieties that show, for example, improved crop yields, disease resistance or drought tolerance. 

Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages

To help achieve the target of reducing deaths from non-communicable diseases by one third, the IAEA assists countries in tackling cancer by helping them devise comprehensive cancer control programmes, establishing nuclear medicine, radiation oncology and radiology facilities, as well as supporting education and training for specialized health professionals.

Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all

Water is essential to life. As populations grow and economies expand, access to clean and safe water is imperative. Isotopic techniques shed light on the age and quality of water. Some countries use this to implement integrated water resource management plans to sustainably use resources and to protect water and water-related ecosystems.

Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all

The IAEA fosters the efficient and safe use of nuclear power by supporting existing and new nuclear programmes around the world, catalysing innovation and building capacity in energy planning, analysis, and nuclear information and knowledge management.

Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and foster innovation

Nuclear science and technology can make a major contribution to economic growth, and have an important role to play in support of sustainable development. With the IAEA’s help, several countries have increased the competitiveness of their industries by using these technologies for example for non-destructive testing for safety and quality tests, and irradiation techniques for improving product durability, from car tires to pipelines and medical devices to cables.

Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts

Nuclear power, along with wind and hydro, is among the lowest-carbon technologies available to generate electricity. The IAEA works to increase global awareness of the role of nuclear power in relation to climate change, in particular to ensure that the role that nuclear power can and does play in assisting countries to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions is properly recognized.

Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development

To sustainably manage and protect oceans and, in turn, support coastal communities, many countries are using nuclear and isotopic techniques, with support from the IAEA, to better understand and monitor ocean health and marine phenomena like ocean acidification and harmful algal blooms.

Protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, and halt and reverse land degradation and halt biodiversity loss

Isotopic techniques provide accurate assessments of soil erosion and help to identify erosion hot spots, providing an important tool to reverse land degradation and restore soils. The IAEA’s support in this area helps many countries to gather information using these techniques to shape agricultural practices for more sustainable use of land and, ultimately, to increase incomes, while also improving conservation methods and protection of resources, ecosystems and biodiversity.

Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the global partnership for sustainable development

Partnerships with Member States are at the heart of the IAEA’s activities. Close collaboration between the IAEA, United Nations organizations and other international and civil society organizations helps to maximize the impact of the IAEA’s support towards the achievement of Member States’ development priorities.


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