- Key findings
- Expand/Collapse Indicators
- 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
- Main tables
- Policy context
How has the EU progressed towards the SDGs?
Over the most recent five years of available data, the EU made progress towards almost all of the 17 sustainable development goals (SDG). Progress in some goals has been faster than in others, and within goals, movement away from the sustainable development objectives also occurred in specific areas.
The figure below shows a statistical summary of EU progress towards the 17 SDGs over this period.
EU progress over the past five-year period appears to have been strongest towards SDG 16 ‘peace, justice and strong institutions’, followed by SDG 1 ‘no poverty’, SDG 3 ‘good health and well-being’, SDG 2 ‘zero hunger’, SDG 8 ‘decent work and economic growth’ and SDG 11 ‘sustainable cities and communities’.
The EU also made progress towards SDG 4 ‘quality education’, SDG 17 ‘partnership for the goals’, SDG 12 ‘responsible consumption and production’, SDG 7 ‘affordable and clean energy’, SDG 10 'reduced inequalities', SDG 15 ‘life on land’ and SDG 9 ‘industry, innovation and infrastructure’. SDG 13 'climate action' is characterized by an equal number of positive and negative developments of the indicators.
For SDG 5, ‘gender equality’, the overall development was negative, i.e. the EU moved away from the goal over the last five years.
It should be noted that progress towards a given goal does not necessarily mean that the status of that goal is satisfactory for the EU. For example, in the case of SDG 15, which focuses on terrestrial ecosystems, some of the indicators show good progress, but this should not lead to the conclusion that ecosystems or biodiversity in the EU are in good health. In the case of SDG 2, emphasis was put on environmental indicators, as there are no major concerns on food security.
In the case of two goals – SDG 6 ‘clean water and sanitation’ and SDG 14 ‘life below water’ – trends cannot be calculated due to insufficient comparable data over the past five years or a trend calculation is not applicable.
In order to get a quick overview of the progress of each SDG and its subindicators, please click on the images in the wheel below.