But there is always room for improvement. In our current methodology, the US comes 8th in our higher education and training pillar, however in some of the new indicators we are working on it does less well, coming 14th in terms of its ability to apply critical thinking in teaching (the leading country here is Denmark, although interestingly Japan, another top 10 country in this year’s Index, ranks 128th worldwide) and 17th for the skillset of its university graduates. In health, too, where we essentially measure three outcomes; disability-adjusted life years; infant mortality and absence due to poor health, the country ranks around 50th place.
Suspended between Trump’s disdain and Silicon Valley’s innovation-fueled enthusiasm for solar, wind could be seen as stranded in something of an impasse. But Mark Barteau, the director of the University of Michigan’s Energy Institute, says that’s not the case. According to the . Department of Energy, if the wind industry continues to see the steady growth it has experience over the last decade, it could provide over a third of the .’s energy by 2050. More so than the environmental argument in favor of this development, which, under the current administration, is not faring well, the economics of the wind industry are driving this trend, Barteau says. It’s hard to argue with an industry that is economically competitive with other forms of energy, and provides massive opportunity for onshore manufacturing and job creation. And both because of its large-capacity potential and exciting new offshore developments, wind appears poised to keep renewables growing throughout the next four years.
The United Nation’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals is an audacious to-do list for the world: In 15 years, the . wants everyone on earth to work together to eradicate poverty, stop climate change, and undo inequality and injustice. Though solving the planet’s biggest problems in less than a generation may sound a tad ambitious, the fact is that positive change is already underway. In this infographic, we take a look at 17 ways that the .’s goals are already being accomplished—right now, every day, around the world. Because when you change where you are, you’re taking the first necessary steps to changing the entire planet.