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Global Challenges at a Glance

Synopsis of global challenges

Global2030 publishes a number of reports and fact sheets focussing on the most important global challenges for human needs and life. All the examined challenges deal with vital damages or risks to human life.

Assessing Priorities for Rio+20 is the most recent publication which addresses all these challenges, however more up to date information on some topics is contained in publications on the Millennium Development Goals and the Sustainable Development Goals. Please see the News and Publications page for more information.

The survey gives an overview of the most urgent global challenges for human needs and life. The draft synopsis is of 2010.

On analysing 24 challenges, the survey identifies the following 4 as the most important:


World Nutrition and Poverty Eradication

About 915 million to 1.02 billion people suffer chronic hunger, which kills roughly 3.5-5 million per year. Around 1.4 billion people live below the extreme poverty line, defined by the UN (United Nations) as 1.25 dollars per day. The members of the United Nations have agreed upon targets to halve the proportions of the undernourished and extremely poor people, from 1990 to 2015. Trends: 

Stop Epidemics

HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus)/AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome), tuberculosis and malaria combined kill around 4.2 million people per year. Also, drug resistant viruses and new diseases create a global risk. The UN target to halt the spread of HIV/AIDS, malaria, and other major infectious diseases by 2015. Trends: +


Keeping Climate Liveable

Man-made climate change is likely to include weather extremes and a global warming of 1.1-6.4°C (degree Celsius) by 2100 − harming agriculture, biodiversity, freshwater, coastal zones, health, etc. (and so on) There are currently 40 industrialized countries and economies in transition who have agreed to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions by 5% from 1990 levels, by 2012. Trend: 

Safe Birth Conditions

Due to the lack of assistance by skilled attendants, between 3.5 and 4.5 million infant and maternal deaths occur each year. The UN members have set targets to reduce the mortality rate of children under the age of 5 by two thirds and the maternal mortality rate by three quarters, for 2015. Trend: +


For data sources, measures and more information on these and other issues such as: road safety, financial stability, peace, or capacity building, please refer to our comprehensive draft synopsis on global challenges.

Draft (2010 - Special Edition for the UN MDG Summit)