SDG 3: Good health and well-being

Iberdrola's systems to protect against COVID-19 are the first to receive global certification from AENOR

Social action Health SDG

Iberdrola has focused on all its Stakeholders to manage the COVID-19 crisis. The incidence of the disease among group employees is far lower than the averages in the countries where it operates. AENOR has recognised this and granted the company the first global coronavirus management certificate.

Our contribution to SDG 3: Health and well-being

 From the first moments the threat from COVID-19 was identified, Iberdrola put into action a global action plan comprising over 150 measures to guarantee electricity supplies — especially in hospitals, health centres and other essential services — and to protect people's health and safety.

 Obtaining the AENOR quality certificate for our excellent anti-COVID measures.

 Lower rate for the illness among employees of Iberdrola group than the averages in the countries where we operate.

 The company has delivered front line health supplies (400 sets of breathing apparatus, more than 4 million masks, 242,000 overalls and 30,000 goggles) and undertaken support initiatives worth over €30m.

 Iberdrola has launched its call for Social Benefits to support sectors of society made vulnerable due to COVID-19, to which it will allocate 1.2 million euros to benefit some 50,000 people.

 The company reinforced the energy supplies to 350 hospitals and medical facilities during the state of alarm.

 Iberdrola has launched an aid plan for customers to help them pay their electricity, gas and other service bills. The aim is to alleviate the possible impact of COVID-19 on consumers with difficulties in paying.

 The company has carried out different actions against COVID-19 in the different countries in which it operates: Spain, United Kingdom, United States, Mexico and Brazil.

 Responsible back-to-work plans that comply with local regulations: all Continental European staff have returned to our offices and plans are gradually being rolled out in other areas.

 Iberdrola guarantees the quality of its waste water and prevents pollution. In Fiscal Year 2020, the company returned 96 % of the water collected to the receiving environment and saved 3.277 Mgl through reuse in closed or semi-open cycles.

 The company has set itself the goal of zero accidents. To achieve this target and to promote better safety conditions in the workplace it has established a Strategic Plan for Occupational Health and Safety.

 Objective to exceed 90 % of employees with ISO 18001 / OSHAS 45001 certifications in Europe.

 In the United Kingdom, ScottishPower exceeded 33.7 million euros allocated to research since it joined the Cancer Research association in 2012, while on the other side of the Atlantic, progress is being made in the development, implementation and monitoring of the 2020/2022 Zero Accident Plan in Brazil.

What is Sustainable Development Goal 3: Health and well-being?

The goals within SDG 3 seek to guarantee a healthy life and promote well-being for all ages, thus safeguarding sustainable development. Its objectives include reducing the global maternal mortality rate and ending avoidable deaths of newborns and children under the age of five years. It seeks to end epidemics and infectious and non-infection diseases through prevention and treatment.

Why is it so important to achieve SDG 3: Health and well-being?

Guaranteeing a healthy life and promoting the well-being of all the world's people is essential if prosperous societies are to exist. Access to health and well-being is a human right, however, inequality when it comes to access to healthcare persists, and every year, millions of people die because they do not receive adequate care.

The COVID-19 pandemic has challenged the great advances achieved in improving the health of millions of people around the world. It has been an unprecedented milestone in preparing for health emergencies and investment in public services. The disease has claimed a significant number of lives and challenged numerous health systems. It has also interfered with essential health services and surgical procedures that could have saved lives. Many people have stopped going to health centres because they are afraid they will become infected with COVID-19, foregoing vaccinations and check-ups, and even emergency care.

Thus far, significant progress had been made, but there was still a lot to do. According to The Sustainable Development Goals Report (2020), the mortality rate among newborns fell by 38 % between 2000 and 2017, from 342 deaths to 211 per 100,000 live births around the world. During the same period, the global maternal mortality rate fell by 2.9 % each year. In 2017, approximately 810 women died each day due to pregnancy- and childbirth-related causes. They were all avoidable. Of all these deaths, 86 % occurred in Sub-Saharan African and South Asia.

During recent decades, enormous improvements have been as regards infant mortality. The global mortality rate for children under the age of five has been reduced from 76 deaths per 1,000 live births in 2000 to 42 in 2015 and to 39 in 2018. When it comes to the world neonatal mortality rate, this has been reduced from 31 per 1,000 live births in 2000 to 18 deaths in 2018. This aside, around 5.3 million children died before reaching the age of five in 2018 alone. Sub-Saharan Africa is the region with the highest mortality rates: One in 13 children died before reaching the age of five in 2018.

It is estimated that the COVID-19 pandemic will cause thousands of additional deaths among under-fives in 2020 and dozens of maternal deaths in addition to these. This increase in the death rate could be truly devastating: 118 low and medium income countries could see an increase from 9.8 % to 44.8 % in minors.

Reducing the number of premature deaths requires progress in access to clean water and sanitation (SDG6), which will help to reduce lethal and infectious diseases, such as malaria and tuberculosis, and slow the spread of HIV. Quality, affordable health care, improved nutrition and increased availability of vaccines will also be critical to curbing child and maternal mortality.

Faced with this situation, reducing the child and maternal mortality rates and ending epidemics became the SDG 3 of the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals, approved in September 2015 during the Sustainable Development Summit, a meeting at which more than 150 heads of State and Government approved the 2030 Agenda.

Iberdrola aligned with the sdg

Keys to understanding child mortality worldwide

Who is affected?

5.3 million children under the age of five

died in 2018.

45.5 % died during their first month of life

as a result of premature birth, low weight, infections, asphyxiation or birth trauma.

How is it distributed across the world?

52.5 % is concentrated in Africa, 42.7 % in Asia, 3.3% in Latin America and the Caribbean, 1.3 % in North America and Europe and 0.2 % in Oceania.

The 10 countries with the highest child mortality

are all in Africa, where for every 1,000 children under five born alive the following numbers die (— in thousands —):









African Rep.

Sierra Leone






Dem. Rep.
of Congo

Main causes

Lack of access to clean water and sanitation, malnutrition, low availability of vaccines and lack of good quality health care, leading to problems in childbirth and the spread of diseases such as malaria, tuberculosis and HIV.


We must invest more resources to improve primary health systems — such as vaccines and antibiotics —, increase breastfeeding and the supply of clean water and nutrition. In addition, universal basic education must be promoted.

 SEE INFOGRAPHIC: Keys for understanding child mortality worldwide [PDF] External link, opens in new window.

SDG 3 targets: Health and well-being

The specific targets set for 2030 are:

  • Reduce the global maternal mortality rate to less than 70 deaths per 100,000 live births.
  • Ensure that all countries decrease neonatal mortality to at least as low as 12 per 1,000 live births and mortality in under fives to at least as low as 25 deaths per 1,000 live births.
  • Guarantee universal access to sexual and reproductive health services, including family planning, information and education.
  • Reduce the number of deaths and illnesses caused by hazardous chemicals and water, soil and air pollution.

The SDGs and their impact on economy, society and environment

The SDGs as part of Iberdrola Group's business strategy

Circulo ODS

Main focus

  • Affordable and clean energy
  • Climate action

Direct Contribution

  • Clean water and sanitation
  • Industry, innovation e infrastructure
  • Life on land
  • Partnerships for the goals

Indirect Contribution to all Other SDGs

  • No poverty
  • Zero hunger
  • Good health and well-being
  • Quality education
  • Gender equality
  • Decent work and economic growth
  • Reduced inequalities
  • Sustainable cities and communities
  • Responsible consumption and production
  • Life below water
  • Peace, justice and strong institutions