Welcome to the One Seventeen.

We're at issue 6! That means the last issue, #5, was one-twentieth of the way to 100! What will the 100th One Seventeen hold? What will happen during the week of February 25th, 2018? If the thought of 2018 being upon us freaks you out too, well, then let's freak out together. What are you planning for 2018? How could a virtual community help? 

"Taking a driving seat in international cooperation to respond to climate change." - Xi Jinping
(Image from Quartz)
China in the driving seat on climate
In his three-plus-hour "work update" speech last week, Chinese president Xi Jinping said he wants China to develop "a new model of modernization with humans developing in harmony with nature." There was some strong language in there, which leads one to believe that China may come to the rescue of the Paris climate agreement. We can only hope that the Chinese government intends to walk the talk. China has publicly committed to reduce its emissions by 60 to 65 percent (per unit of GDP) by 2030, is phasing out fossil-fuel cars, and more
SDGs are underfunded, so do more stuff plz
The world's richest countries need to put more money toward the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), they said after a recent workshop. This is not the most surprising revelation, and the announcement is free from many details about what exactly that means, so it appears we'll just have to wait and see.
70 million
That's how many people China plans to bring out of poverty in the next three years. They've done 60 million in the last five years, so that number seems reachable given the government's renewed focus on it. The plan involves a lot of moving people from their farms to housing projects on the outskirts of cities. Take a look inside the lives of a few people who are making the transition.
Bad chemicals
The US Environmental Protection Agency has changed course drastically under the current administration, and it's not looking pretty. TL;DR: There will probably be more bad chemicals in stuff. The long read: The person now running things worked for chemical companies for a long time before taking up her new EPA post, and has a fundamentally different idea of what evidence we need to ban a substance from use. If only a few tests have been run, but the evidence says a substance is likely to kill people, the Obama-era EPA would say "No, you can't use it." The current EPA, in contrast, will say, "We don't have enough evidence. Go ahead and use it until we do!" Yikes.
Cast ye pods
For times when reading something on your phone or in a book puts you in mortal peril, there's a better way: The podcast. For inspiration and safety on your morning commute, do take a look at Brink of Impact, which includes lots of interviews with people doing very interesting and impactful things. For even more podcasts focused on making an impact, check out this list.
Steph Speirs, Co-founder and CEO of Solstice
She wants to help you lower your electricity bill with solar power, and you don't even need a roof. Learn more at Solstice
Dude, where's my data
Much of the world isn't even collecting the data we need to tell how we're doing on poverty, climate, inequality, and other big challenges. A new OECD report shows that there is currently no data on two-thirds of what the world has promised to do by 2030, and even much of the data we do have is not usable for the kinds of comparisons we need to make. In many developing countries, the report's authors say, data shortages come from lack of resources. The takeaways? We need more funding and "political leadership" to get that data.
Smash the patriarchy
If you've been active in the #MeToo campaign on social media, or if you haven't, or if you've been following the Harvey Weinstein thing in the news, perhaps more of us than usual have been thinking about the relationship between gender, power, and violence. About gender inequality, the effects thereof, and how we're not okay with them. Have recent events helped us make progress? One columnist writes that talking about it is the first step.
Hope you have the best week ever. Please send all driving seats, bad chemicals, podcasts, and development data to me at
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The One Seventeen is a weekly email that presents the latest in how the world is doing on ending poverty, protecting the planet, and reducing inequality, delivered in plain English. Each email has 5 parts: Recent developments; a resource; a profile of someone to watch; a summary of recent research; and commentary from around the web. (Why the One Seventeen? It's a reference to each one of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).)

Copyright © 2017 Christian Petroske, All rights reserved.