Since the industrial revolution more than 250 years ago, we have been in a world undergoing the most rapid changes in its history. Thus, economic and technological changes have changed social paradigms, causing a significant and constant increase in the world's population, the huge development in all areas of production carried out by the implementation of the capitalist economic system and the contribution of globalization, demanded that states took a less intervening role in the economy, causing an economic approach that prioritizes mass consumption instead of sustainable production.
Under this premise, it was established that economic growth is the path for continuous improvement of human prosperity on the planet. Over the years, however, it has been shown that the current economic models prevailing in the world are proving to be unstable, incapable of distributing the benefits of growth and poor at managing the environment on which people depend.
The economic growth that occurred in the last 50 years generated an unprecedented historical development, but the consequences of this development have a direct correlation with the deterioration of the harmonious system of our planet, thus being the main contributor to changes generated at an environmental level, such as the increase in pollution levels, the loss of biodiversity, climate change and some of the most recent social crises.
In this way, based on the studies of L,Steffen (2015), it is identifiable that structural changes on planet Earth are caused by the increase in human activity from its development and economic activity from the industrial revolution, increasing with globalization, because the development in connectivity within trade allows a faster growth and an environmental deterioration in consonance.
Therefore, it is necessary to understand that the system of production and consumption, generated by the current economic systems that does not take into account the natural balance of the life cycle of matter, is therefore deteriorating the planet at an accelerated rate, putting human life in check, as well as that of all the species with which we cohabit. In this regard, according to recent scientific studies, it is proven that if we do not change the current production model we will have a complicated situation for the years after 2030.
Remember that currently planet Earth takes a year and seven months to regenerate what we consume in one, so we have a deficit well above the sustainable; in turn, if production and consumption trends are maintained at this level by 2030, the equivalent of 2 Planets Earth will be needed to sustain human life on the globe. (Global Footprint Network, 2018). Researcher Johan Rockström established in 2009 the planetary boundaries for humanity to continue to develop and prosper in following generations.
These limits are far from the points of no return, so they are a clear warning that if a timely intervention is not carried out we could transgress the threshold. If these limits are exceeded, the results would be the collapse of life as we know it. The impacts would be simply devastating.
For this reason, the United Nations developed in 2015 an Action Plan until 2030 based on 17 global objectives to act against this problem that puts human life at risk. This is in order to encourage States and non-governmental actors to modify their actions and adopt them to meet these 17 objectives.
Taking into account how States and non-governmental actors act, it is seen that it will be very difficult to execute the 2030 Agenda in the way it is being proposed, since it has been demonstrated that public policies and strategies emanating from international organizations do not have the expected result, due to multiple factors, including the disparity between States, the little or no cooperation between the actors involved and the resistance of some countries in addressing global problems through global governance, so they end up not fully meeting the objectives set; an example of this is the Kyoto Protocol and the Paris Climate Agreement.
Taking into account these circumstances, it is necessary to seek organizational alternatives at the political level to generate the appropriate modifications with the aim of obtaining greater efficiency and effectiveness in the implementation of global strategies within each State. Currently it is evident the actions emanating by sectors of the populations around the world in the democratization of the evidence that indicates that human activities have adverse environmental impacts and we observe a growing citizen awareness of the ecological crisis.
These actions are a great step, as well as the promotion of production strategies harmonious with the environment, as is the case of the circular economy, or actions that go further, such as the current demand by organized communities and non-governmental actors to have greater autonomy in the implementation of projects linked to the development of the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations, or greater independence from the levels of state organization closest to the population (municipalities, parishes, etc.) in the planning, implementation and evaluation of the commitments acquired at the global level, understanding the ecological crisis as a global problem, which merits local actions for solution.
It is time for the local to determine the Global, for decentralization to be the option to work for the implementation of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. Let's think globally, let's act locally.