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What is Sustainability?

“As consciousness has grown over the fragility of the environment and because the growing environmental crisis has impacted people directly, the concept of sustainability has entered the public consciousness. The word ‘sustainability’ has become assimilated into Australian law, primarily through its inclusion in the concept of ‘ecologically sustainable development’ from the early 1990s. Today the words ‘sustainable’ and ‘sustainability’ have achieved a wide usage that encompasses many social norms.” (Understanding Sustainability Law, LexisNexis Butterworths)

"Sustainable development “provides economic, social and environmental benefits in the long term. To achieve this, sustainable development must have regard to the living and non-living resource base, conservation of resources, the long-term character of the market, and the advantages and disadvantages of alternative courses of action for future generations.” (Encyclopaedic Australian Legal Dictionary, Lexis Advance Pacific Research)

What is Sustainable Development?

Sustainable Development Goals

Sustainable Development Goals banner from UN website

“The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, adopted by all United Nations Member States in 2015, provides a shared blueprint for peace and prosperity for people and the planet, now and into the future. At its heart are the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which are an urgent call for action by all countries - developed and developing - in a global partnership.” (United Nations,

Use the icons below to discover the meaning behind each of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals

1 No poverty 2 Zero hunger 3 Good health and well-being 4 Quality education 5 Gender equality 6 Clean Water and sanitation
7 Affordable and clean energy 8 Decent work and economic growth 9 Industry innovation and infrastructure 10 Reduced inequalities 11 Sustainable cities and communities 12 Responsible consumption and production
13 Climate Action 14 Life below water 15 life on land 16 Peace justice and strong institutions 17 Partnerships for the goals UN SDG logo