Nearly 200 countries have signed on to a plan to tackle the world's biggest problems. Let's do it.

Ambitious? Absolutely. Impossible? Hardly.

Activists, celebrities, and nearly 200 world leaders have gathered for a not-so-simple goal: to save the world.

Seriously.


These demonstrators gathered in New York on Thursday, Sept. 24, 2015, in support of the UN's Sustainable Development Goals. Photo by Brad Barket/Getty Images for Action/2015.

The UN has set out a really ambitious list of 17 goals to achieve sustainable development by the year 2030.

The goals cover a wide variety of topics, all working to end extreme poverty, fight inequality and injustice, and fix climate change.


UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon was joined by others outside UN headquarters for the announcement.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is joined by his wife Madam Yoo (Ban) Soon-taek, U.K. director-screenwriter Richard Curtis, UN Deputy Secretary General Jan Eliasson, and others to watch as the 17 goals are projected onto the side of the UN headquarters in New York. Photo by Kena Betancur/Getty Images for Global Goals.

The unveiling of the goals coincided with the 70th annual meeting of the UN General Assembly.

President Obama addresses the UN on Sept. 28, 2015. Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images.

Around the world, people rallied support for the goals.

In places like Sao Paulo, Brazil:

This person from Sao Paulo shows support for goal number 5: gender equality. Photo by Mauricio Santana/Getty Images for Action/2015.

And Johannesburg, South Africa:

People in Johannesburg gathered to rally support for the global goals. Photo by Gallo Images/Getty Images.

And Sydney, Australia:

Australian actress Deborah Mailman poses on Sept. 24, 2015, in Sydney. Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images for Global Goals.

In New York, Mashable's Social Good Summit devoted time to how technology can work together with Global Goals.

Model Alek Wek was in attendance:

Photo by Mark Sagliocco/Getty Images for Global Goals.

Teen clockmaker Ahmed Mohamed and National Geographic Society CEO Gary Knell addressed the summit together:

Photo by Mark Sagliocco/Getty Images for Global Goals.

And former Spice Girl Victoria Beckham and Queen Rania Al Abdullah of Jordan also made an appearance together:

Photo by Mark Sagliocco/Getty Images for Global Goals.

On Sept. 25, 2015, 193 countries signed off on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). So ... what happens next?

Three years after the idea for the SDGs were first proposed during the Rio+20 conference, UN member countries signed off on the outline, which picks up where the oft-criticized Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) left off.

One of the biggest criticisms of the MDGs was that there wasn't much in the way of consistent data measurement. The UN hopes to address that with the release of their Data Revolution Report.

Immediately, engineers began work figuring out new ways to address the problems before them:


The next step in implementing the newly-agreed-upon SDGs is an awareness campaign.

Wonder how you can help? Start by spreading the word.

On the Global Goals website, they offer some great tips on how we can all help out.

"The more people who know about the Global Goals for sustainable development, the more successful they'll be. If we all fight for them, our leaders will make them happen. ... We need your help to share the Goals. In conversation, on e-mail, in debate, on products, at home, at work, at school whatever it takes to Tell Everyone."

And on their site, they have a number of ready-for-social-media images to share from your Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, or Google+ accounts.


A star-studded "We the People" video offers another way to get involved.

The "We the People" campaign launched with the support of people like Ashton Kutcher, Charlize Theron, Chris Martin, Colin Firth, Daniel Craig, Jennifer Lawrence, Jennifer Lopez, John Legend, Kate Winslet, Malala Yousafzai, Matt Damon, Meryl Streep, One Direction, P!nk, Robert Pattinson, Robert Redford, Stephen Hawking, Stevie Wonder, and so many more.

You can add your voice to the mix over at the Global Goals site.

Watch the video below:

Scroll down to read the goals in full:

  1. We will live in a world where nobody anywhere lives in extreme poverty.
  2. We will live in a world where no one goes hungry, no one wakes in the morning asking if there will be food today.
  3. We will live in a world where no child has to die from diseases we know how to cure and where proper health care is a lifelong right for us all.
  4. We will live in a world where everyone goes to school, and education gives us the knowledge and skills for a fulfilling life.
  5. We will live in a world where all women and all girls have equal opportunities to thrive and be powerful and safe. We can't succeed if half the world is held back.
  6. We will live in a world where all people can get clean water and proper toilets at home, at school, at work.
  7. We will live in a world where there's sustainable energy for everyone — heat, life, and power for the planet without destroying the planet.
  8. We will live in a world where economies prosper and new wealth leads to decent jobs for everyone.
  9. We will live in a world where our industries, our infrastructure, and our best innovations are not just used to make money — but to make all our lives better.
  10. We will live in a world where prejudices and extremes of inequality are defeated — inside our countries and between different countries.
  11. We will live in a world where people live in cities and communities that are safe, progressive, and support everyone who lives in them.
  12. We will live in a world where we replace what we consume — a planet where we put back what we take out of the earth.
  13. We will live in a world that is decisively rolling back the threat of climate change.
  14. We will live in a world where we restore and protect the life in our oceans and seas
  15. We will live in a world where we restore and protect life on land — the forests, the animals, the earth itself.
  16. We will live in a world with peace between and inside countries, where all governments are open and they answer to us for what they do at home and abroad, and where justice rules, with everyone equal before the law.
  17. And we must live in a world where countries and we, their people, work together in partnerships of all kinds to make these global goals a reality for everyone, everywhere.
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Should a man lose his home because the grass in his yard grew higher than 10 inches? The city of Dunedin, Florida seems to think so.

According to the Institute of Justice, which is representing Jim Ficken, he had a very good reason for not mowing his lawn – and tried to rectify the situation as best he could.

In 2014, Jim's mom became ill and he visited her often in South Carolina to help her out. When he was away, his grass grew too long and he was cited by a code office; he cut the grass and wasn't fined.

France has started forcing supermarkets to donate food instead of throwing it away.

But several years later, this one infraction would come back to haunt him after he left to take care of him's mom's affairs after she died. The arrangements he made to have his grass cut fell through (his friend who he asked to help him out passed away unexpectedly) and that set off a chain reaction that may result in him losing his home.

The 69-year-old retiree now faces a $29,833.50 fine plus interest. Watch the video to find out just what Jim is having to deal with.

Mow Your Lawn or Lose Your House! www.youtube.com

Cities

The world officially loves Michelle Obama.

The former first lady has overtaken the number one spot in a poll of the world's most admired women. Conducted by online research firm YouGov, the study uses international polling tools to survey people in countries around the world about who they most admire.

In the men's category, Bill Gates took the top spot, followed by Barack Obama and Jackie Chan.

In the women's category, Michelle Obama came first, followed by Oprah Winfrey and Angelina Jolie. Obama pushed Jolie out of the number one spot she claimed last year.

Unsurprising, really, because what's not to love about Michelle Obama? She is smart, kind, funny, accomplished, a great dancer, a devoted wife and mother, and an all-around, genuinely good person.

She has remained dignified and strong in the face of rabid masses of so-called Americans who spent eight years and beyond insisting that she's a man disguised as a woman. She's endured non-stop racist memes and terrifying threats to her family. She has received far more than her fair share of cruelty, and always takes the high road. She's the one who coined, "When they go low, we go high," after all.

She came from humble beginnings and remains down to earth despite becoming a familiar face around the world. She's not much older than me, but I still want to be like Michelle Obama when I grow up.

Her memoir, Becoming, may end up being the best-selling memoir of all time, having already sold 10 million copies—a clear sign that people can't get enough Michelle, because there's no such thing as too much Michelle.

Don't like Michelle Obama? Don't care. Those of us who love her will fly our MO flags high and without apology, paying no mind to folks with cold, dead hearts who don't know a gem of a human being when they see one. There is nothing any hater can say or do to make us admire this undeniably admirable woman any less.

When it seems like the world has lost its mind—which is how it feels most days these days—I'm just going to keep coming back to this study as evidence that hope for humanity is not lost.

Here. Enjoy some real-life Michelle on Jimmy Kimmel. (GAH. WHY IS SHE SO CUTE AND AWESOME. I can't even handle it.)

Michelle & Barack Obama are Boring Now www.youtube.com

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via EarthFix / Flickr

What will future generations never believe that we tolerated in 2019?

Dolphin and orca captivity, for sure. They'll probably shake their heads at how people died because they couldn't afford healthcare. And, they'll be completely mystified at the amount of food some people waste while others go starving.

According to Biological Diversity, "An estimated 40 percent of the food produced in the United States is wasted every year, costing households, businesses and farms about $218 billion annually."

There are so many things wrong with this.

First of all it's a waste of money for the households who throw out good food. Second, it's a waste of all of the resources that went into growing the food, including the animals who gave their lives for the meal. Third, there's something very wrong with throwing out food when one in eight Americans struggle with hunger.

Supermarkets are just as guilty of this unnecessary waste as consumers. About 10% of all food waste are supermarket products thrown out before they've reached their expiration date.

Three years ago, France took big steps to combat food waste by making a law that bans grocery stores from throwing away edible food.According to the new ordinance, stores can be fined for up to $4,500 for each infraction.

Previously, the French threw out 7.1 million tons of food. Sixty-seven percent of which was tossed by consumers, 15% by restaurants, and 11% by grocery stores.

This has created a network of over 5,000 charities that accept the food from supermarkets and donate them to charity. The law also struck down agreements between supermarkets and manufacturers that prohibited the stores from donating food to charities.

"There was one food manufacturer that was not authorized to donate the sandwiches it made for a particular supermarket brand. But now, we get 30,000 sandwiches a month from them — sandwiches that used to be thrown away," Jacques Bailet, head of the French network of food banks known as Banques Alimentaires, told NPR.

It's expected that similar laws may spread through Europe, but people are a lot less confident at it happening in the United States. The USDA believes that the biggest barrier to such a program would be cost to the charities and or supermarkets.

"The logistics of getting safe, wholesome, edible food from anywhere to people that can use it is really difficult," the organization said according to Gizmodo. "If you're having to set up a really expensive system to recover marginal amounts of food, that's not good for anybody."

Plus, the idea may seem a little too "socialist" for the average American's appetite.

"The French version is quite socialist, but I would say in a great way because you're providing a way where they [supermarkets] have to do the beneficial things not only for the environment, but from an ethical standpoint of getting healthy food to those who need it and minimizing some of the harmful greenhouse gas emissions that come when food ends up in a landfill," Jonathan Bloom, the author of American Wasteland, told NPR.

However, just because something may be socialist doesn't mean it's wrong. The greater wrong is the insane waste of money, damage to the environment, and devastation caused by hunger that can easily be avoided.

Planet

The world is dark and full of terrors, but every once in a while it graces us with something to warm our icy-cold hearts. And that is what we have today, with a single dad who went viral on Twitter after his daughter posted the photos he sent her when trying to pick out and outfit for his date. You love to see it.




After seeing these heartwarming pics, people on Twitter started suggesting this adorable man date their moms. It was essentially a mom and date matchmaking frenzy.

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