Sustainable Development Goal 12

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Sustainable Development Goal 12
Sustainable Development Goal 12.png
Mission statement"Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns"
Commercial?No
Type of projectNon-Profit
LocationGlobal
OwnerSupported by United Nation & Owned by community
FounderUnited Nations
Established2015
Websitesdgs.un.org

Sustainable Development Goal 12 (SDG 12 or Global Goal 12) is about "responsible consumption and production". It is one of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals established by the United Nations in 2015. The official wording of SDG 12 is "To ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns".[1] SDG 12 is meant to ensure good use of resources, improving energy efficiency, sustainable infrastructure, and providing access to basic services, green and decent jobs and ensuring a better quality of life for all.[2] SDG 12 has 11 targets to be achieved by at least 2030 and progress toward the targets is measured using 13 indicators.[3]

The 11 targets of the goal are: implement the 10‑Year Framework of Programs on Sustainable Consumption and Production Patterns; achieve the sustainable management and efficient use of natural resources; reducing by half the per capita global food waste at the retail and consumer levels and the reduction of food losses along production and supply chains, including post-harvest losses;[4] achieving the environmentally sound management of chemicals and all wastes throughout their life cycle; reducing waste generation through prevention, reduction, recycling and reuse; encourage companies to adopt sustainable practices; promote public procurement practices that are sustainable; and ensure that people everywhere have the relevant information and awareness for sustainable development. The three "means of achieving" targets are: support developing countries to strengthen their scientific and technological capacity; develop and implement tools to monitor sustainable development impacts; and remove market distortions, like fossil fuel subsidies, that encourage wasteful consumption.[5]

By 2019, 79 countries and the European Union have reported on at least one national policy instrument to promote sustainable consumption and production patterns. This was done to work towards the implementation of the "10-Year Framework of Programmes on Sustainable Consumption and Production Patterns".[6]: 14 Global fossil fuel subsidies in 2018 were $400 billion. This was double the estimated subsidies for renewables and is detrimental to the task of reducing global carbon dioxide emissions.[6]: 14

The targets of Goal 12 include using eco-friendly production methods and reducing the amount of waste. By 2030, national recycling rates should increase, as measured in tons of material recycled. Further, companies should adopt sustainable practices and publish sustainability reports.

Background[edit]

Consumption and production are termed as a driving source of the global economy. However, they also rest solely on the use of the natural environment and resources in a way that it continues to have adverse effects on the planet. According to the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), integrating environmental sustainability and economic growth still remains a major global challenge to date. Economic and social progress over the last century has been accompanied by environmental degradation that is damaging the very systems on which our future depends.[7]

To achieve economic growth and sustainable development, it requires that we urgently reduce our ecological footprint of usage by changing the production and consumption of goods and resources. Agriculture is the largest user of water worldwide, and irrigation now claims close to 70 percent of all freshwater for human use.[8]

Targets, indicators and progress[edit]

Blue indicates countries that do have a sustainable consumption and production (SCP) national action plan.[2]

SDG 12 has 11 targets. Four of them are to be achieved by the year 2030, one by the year 2020, and six have no target years. The targets address different issues ranging from implementing the 10‑Year Framework of Programmes on Sustainable Consumption and Production Patterns (Target 12.1), achieving the sustainable management and efficient use of natural resources (Target 12.2), having per capita global food waste at the retail and consumer levels (Target 12.3), achieving the environmentally sound management of chemicals and all wastes throughout their life cycle (Target 12.4), substantially reduce waste generation through prevention, reduction, recycling and reuse (Target 12.5), encourage companies to adopt sustainable practices (Target 12.6), promote public procurement practices that are sustainable, in accordance with national policies and priorities (Target 12.7), ensure that people everywhere have the relevant information and awareness for sustainable development (12.8), support developing countries to strengthen their scientific and technological capabilities (Target 12.a), develop and implement tools to monitor sustainable development impacts for sustainable grouwth (Target 12.b), rationalize inefficient fossil-fuel subsidies that encourage wasteful consumption by removing market distortions (Target 12.c).

Target 12.1: Implement the 10-year sustainable consumption and production framework[edit]

The full title of Target 12.1 is: “Implement the 10‑Year Framework of Programmes on Sustainable Consumption and Production Patterns, all countries taking action, with developed countries taking the lead, taking into account the development and capabilities of developing countries".[9] The goal of this SDG is to have all countries taking the action by 2030.

It has one indicator: Indicator 12.1.1 is the "Number of countries with sustainable consumption and production (SCP) national action plans or SCP mainstreamed as a priority or a target into national policies".[10]

This indicator allows for the quantification and monitoring of countries making progress along the policy cycle of binding and non-binding policy instruments aimed at supporting Sustainable Consumption and Production. Mainstreaming sustainable consumption and production in decision-making at all levels is a core function of the 10-Year Framework. It is expected to “support the integration of sustainable consumption and production into sustainable development policies, programmes and strategies, as appropriate, including, where applicable, into poverty reduction strategies”[11] Suitable data resources for this indicator are currently being explored because statistical standards are yet available.

This framework, adopted by member states at the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, is a global commitment to accelerate the shift to sustainable consumption and production in developed and developing countries.[12] In order to generate the collective impact necessary for such a shift, programs such as the One Planet Network have formed different implementation methods to help achieve Goal 12.[13]

By 2019, 79 countries and the European Union have reported on at least one national policy instrument to promote sustainable consumption and production patterns.[6]: 14  This was done to work towards the implementation of the "10-Year Framework of Programmes on Sustainable Consumption and Production Patterns".[6]: 14

Target 12.2: Sustainable management and use of natural resources[edit]

The full title of Target 12.2 is: "By 2030, achieve the sustainable management and efficient use of natural resources."[1]

This target has two indicators:[14]

  • Indicator 12.2.1: Material footprint, material footprint per capita, and material footprint per GDP
  • Indicator 12.2.2: Domestic material consumption, domestic material consumption per capita, and domestic material consumption per GDP
    World map related to Indicator 12.2.2 in 2017. The map shows domestic material consumption, domestic material consumption per capita, and domestic material consumption per GDP.[2]

Material Footprint is the quantity of material extraction that is required to meet the consumption of a country. The sum of material footprint for biomass, fossil fuels, metal ores and non-metal ores is called the total material footprint.[2] Domestic Material Consumption (DMC) is a production-side measure which does not account for supply chain inputs or exports, meaning a country could have a lower DMC value if it outsources a large proportion of its materials.[2]

A report by the UN in 2020 found that: "Global domestic material consumption per capita rose by 7 per cent, from 10.8 metric tons per capita in 2010 to 11.7 metric tons in 2017, with increases in all regions except Northern America and Africa."[6]: 14

Also, the global material footprint was 85.9 billion metric tons in 2017. This was a 67 per cent increase from 2000.[6]: 14

Target 12.3: Halve global per capita food waste[edit]

The full title of Target 12.3 is: "By 2030, halve per capita global food waste at the retail and consumer levels and reduce food losses along production and supply chains, including post-harvest losses."[1][2] This target has two components (losses and waste) measured by two indicators.[15]

  • Indicator 12.3.1.a: Food Loss Index which focuses on losses from production to consumption level
  • Indicator 12.3.1.b: Food Waste Index this indicator is a proposal under development

Efforts are underway by FAO and the United Nations Environment Programme to measure progress towards SDG Target 12.3 through the Food Loss and Food Waste Indexes.[16]

Initial estimates made by FAO for the Food Loss Index, tell us that globally around 14 percent of the world’s food is lost from production before reaching the retail level.[17] Out of the total food available to consumers in 2019, approximately 17 percent went to the waste bins of households, retailers, restaurants and other food services.[18]

Target 12.4: Responsible management of chemicals and waste[edit]

The full title of Target 12.4 is: "By 2020, achieve the environmentally sound management of chemicals and all wastes throughout their life cycle, in accordance with agreed international frameworks, and significantly reduce their release to air, water and soil in order to minimize their adverse impacts on human health and the environment."[1]

This target has two indicators:[14]

  • Indicator 12.4.1: Number of parties to international multilateral environmental agreements on hazardous waste, and other chemicals that meet their commitments and obligations in transmitting information as required by each relevant agreement
  • Indicator 12.4.2: (a) Hazardous waste generated per capita; and (b) proportion of hazardous waste treated, by type of treatment

The Indicator 12.4.1, doesn't measure the quantity or the impact on the health of chemicals. It is instead referred to the number of countries that have ratified, accepted approved or accesses to one of the follow Multilateral Environmental Agreements:[19]

In the case of the Indicator 12.4.2, it is referred to the quantity of hazardous waste generated and treated. Many of these substances have a negative impact on people's health and the environment. However, they are also present in products that are used in our everyday life. Therefore, the challenge is to manage treating hazardous waste according to international standards. Currently, there is an increase in hazardous waste, that is intensified by the complexity of the products and the unidentified hazardous components.[20] E-waste is a subcategory of this indicator.[20]

Global e-waste generation has grown during 2010 to 2019: from 5.3 kg per capita to 7.3 kg per capita.[6]: 14  The environmentally sound recycling of e-waste also increased: from 0.8 kg per capita to 1.3 kg per capita.[6]: 14

Recycling trash bins in the Czech republic

Target 12.5: Substantially reduce waste generation[edit]

Per capita plastic waste generation, 2015

The full title of Target 12.5 is: "By 2030, substantially reduce waste generation through prevention, reduction, recycling and reuse."[1]

It has one indicator: Indicator 12.5.1 is the "National recycling rate, tons of material recycled".[14]

Every year, about one third of all food produce goes bad.[21] This is worth about $1 trillion a year. The food spoils due to consumers, and going bad during transportation.

"Minimizing waste generation and maximizing the recycling of waste is central to the concept of circular economy."[22] This indicator measures the quantity of material recycled within the country, plus the material that is exported to be recycled abroad, minus the material that countries imported to be recycled inside the country per year. These three different aspects are defined as the National Recycling Rate.[22]

Target 12.6: Encourage companies to adopt sustainable practices and sustainability reporting[edit]

The full title of Target 12.6 is: "Encourage companies, especially large and transnational companies, to adopt sustainable practices and to integrate sustainability information into their reporting cycle."[1]

It has one indicator: Indicator 12.6.1 is the "Number of companies publishing sustainability reports".[14]

This is the only indicator that focuses on monitoring private sector entities' practices. While the indicator counts only the number of private sector entities that issue sustainable reports, the custodian UN agencies promote high quality of the information reported, as well as the integration of these indicators in their annual reports and good practices.[23]

The proposed approach by the custodian agencies indicate that these reports can be stand-alone sustainability reports or part of collective reports; not every report will be considered, this will depend on the quality of the information provided; and there will be a need to consider disclosures covering governance practices and economic, social and environmental impact.[23]

World map for Indicator 12.5.1: Municipal waste recycling rate

Target 12.7: Promote sustainable public procurement practices[edit]

The full title of Target 12.7 is: "Promote public procurement practices that are sustainable, in accordance with national policies and priorities."[1]

It has one indicator: Indicator 12.7.1 is the "Degree of sustainable public procurement policies and action plan implementation".[14]

This indicator refers to the capacity of governments to procure public policies. These policies ensure economic and social development while protecting the planet and reducing the negative impacts in the environment. They need to engage with sustainable public procurement (SPP), and the capacity to measure the proportions of these efforts.[24]

Some of the limitations of this indicator are related to the different ways the countries have to measure not only SPP but also other aspects such as Green Public Procurement (GPP) and Socially Responsible Public Procurement (SRPP).[24]

Target 12.8: Promote universal understanding of sustainable lifestyles[edit]

The safe and just space for humanity. Sustainable lifestyles are situated between an upper limit of permissible use (“Environmental ceiling”) and a lower limit of necessary use of environmental resources (“Social foundation”).

The full title of Target 12.8 is" By 2030, ensure that people everywhere have the relevant information and awareness for sustainable development and lifestyles in harmony with nature."[1]

It has one indicator: Indicator 12.8.1 is the "Extent to which (i) global citizenship education and (ii) education for sustainable development are mainstreamed in (a) national education policies; (b) curricula; (c) teacher education; and (d) student assessment".[14]

This indicator is referred to the way each country ensures Global Citizenship Education (GCED) and Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) are considered in their educational systems. One of the limitations of this indicator is related to the government self-reporting; situation addressed by UNESCO by comparing this information with alternative sources.[25]

The different aspects where GCED and ESD should be considered as priorities in the national education systems are: a) Policies, b) Curricula, c) Teacher training, d) Student assessment.[25]

Target 12.a: Support developing countries' scientific and technological capacity for sustainable consumption and production[edit]

The full title of Target 12.A is: "Support developing countries to strengthen their scientific and technological capacity to move towards more sustainable patterns of consumption and production."[1]

It has one indicator: Indicator 12.a.1 is the "Installed renewable energy-generating capacity in developing countries (in watts per capita)".[14]

The indicator is defined as the installed capacity of power plants that generate electricity from renewable energy sources divided by the total population of a country.[26] The demand for electricity is high in developing countries and often its availability is contained.[26]

Target 12.b: Develop and implement tools to monitor sustainable tourism[edit]

The full title of Target 12.B is: "Develop and implement tools to monitor sustainable development impacts for sustainable tourism that creates jobs and promotes local culture and products."[1]

It has one indicator: Indicator 12.b.1 is the "Implementation of standard accounting tools to monitor the economic and environmental aspects of tourism sustainability".[14]

This indicator relates to the degree in which countries do implement the Tourist Satellite Account (TSA) that have to be implemented according to the Recommended Methodological Framework 2008. In addition, it relates on how countries implement the System of Environmental and Economic Accounts (SEEA) tables, which need to be implemented according the System of Economic-Environmental Accounting 2012. These two different tools are currently considered as the best more feasible way to monitor sustainable tourism.[27]

Target 12.c: Remove market distortions that encourage wasteful consumption[edit]

The full title of Target 12.C is: "Rationalize inefficient fossil-fuel subsidies that encourage wasteful consumption by removing market distortions, in accordance with national circumstances, including by restructuring taxation and phasing out those harmful subsidies, where they exist, to reflect their environmental impacts, taking fully into account the specific needs and conditions of developing countries and minimizing the possible adverse impacts on their development in a manner that protects the poor and the affected communities."[1]

It has one indicator: Indicator 12.c.1 is the "(a) Amount of fossil-fuel subsidies as a percentage of GDP; and (b) amount of fossil fuel subsidies as a proportion of total national expenditure on fossil fuels".[28]

To work in towards the reporting of this indicator at the different constituencies (Global, regional and national) it is important to consider the following sub-indicators: 1) The direct transfer of government funds, 2) Price support, 3) Tax expenditure. Is important to consider as well, while working on achieving this target, the special attention to the energy - dependent sectors and the challenges they can go through during these reform processes, especially poor households which are the ones more vulnerable to price increases.[28] "Reallocating fossil fuel subsidies to sectors that are relevant for development could give a boost to reaching the SDGs."[28]

Global fossil fuel subsidies in 2018 were $400 billion.[6]: 14  This was double the estimated subsidies for renewables and is detrimental to the task of reducing global carbon dioxide emissions.[6]: 14

Custodian agencies[edit]

Custodian agencies are in charge of reporting on the following indicators:[29]

Progress[edit]

An annual report is prepared by the Secretary-General of the United Nations evaluating the progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals.[6]

By 2016, 13.8% of food was lost in supply chains, this means; during the harvest, transport, storage and processing, while the case of electronic waste grew by 38% and only 20% is recyclable.[citation needed]

Links with other SDGs and other issues[edit]

SDG 12 has targets related to SDG 2, SDG 3, SDG 4, SDG 8, SDG 9, SDG 13, SDG 14 and SDG 15.[30]

"With proper policy support, growing diversity is the foundation for dietary diversity and hence health and nutrition (SDG 2, 3), for resilience to biotic and abiotic stressors (SDG 13 and SDG 15) and should further decent employment (SDG 8) and rural livelihoods (SDG 1). Furthermore, achieving SDG 12 requires constraining industrial agriculture because of its negative impacts on other SDGs, including SDG 6, because it is the largest user of freshwater resources; SDG 2 and SDG 15 because they are chief drivers of biological diversity loss; SDG 7 because of its dependence on fossil fuels; SDG 14 because of pesticide and fertilizer run-off polluting land and water and creating dead zones in the seas; and SDG 13 because it is a major contributor to greenhouse gas emissions."[30]

Achieving SDG 12 will contribute to the achievement of the other SDGs in an direct or indirect way. Therefore, SDG 12 is an enabler to achieve other SDGs, since the policies that need to be taken in order to achieve its targets are incline to think about economic growth thinking as well on the use of the resources and how this impact in the process of poverty eradication and shared prosperity, taking us to achieve sustainable consumption and production patterns.[31]

Organizations[edit]

Sources[edit]

Definition of Free Cultural Works logo notext.svg This article incorporates text from a free content work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 License statement/permission on Wikimedia Commons. Text taken from The State of Food and Agriculture 2019. Moving forward on food loss and waste reduction, In brief, 24, FAO, FAO. To learn how to add open license text to Wikipedia articles, please see this how-to page. For information on reusing text from Wikipedia, please see the terms of use.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k United Nations (2017) Resolution adopted by the General Assembly on 6 July 2017, Work of the Statistical Commission pertaining to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (A/RES/71/313)
  2. ^ a b c d e f "sdg-tracker.org/sustainable-consumption-production".
  3. ^ "Sustainable Consumption and Production: A Crucial Goal for Sustainable Development—Reflections on the Spanish SDG Implementation Report". Journal of Sustainability Research. 1 (2). 2019. doi:10.20900/jsr20190019.
  4. ^ The State of Food and Agriculture 2019. Moving forward on food loss and waste reduction, In brief. Rome: FAO. 2019. p. 4.
  5. ^ United Nations (2017) Resolution adopted by the General Assembly on 6 July 2017, Work of the Statistical Commission pertaining to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (A/RES/71/313)
  6. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k United Nations Economic and Social Council (2020) Progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals Report of the Secretary-General, High-level political forum on sustainable development, convened under the auspices of the Economic and Social Council (E/2020/57), 28 April 2020
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  12. ^ "A/CONF.216/5: A 10-Year Framework of Programmes" (PDF).
  13. ^ http://www.oneplanetnetwork.org/platform-sustainable-development-goal-12 Retrieved October 15, 2018
  14. ^ a b c d e f g h "SDG Indicators Metadata repository". UN Stats. Retrieved 14 September 2020.
  15. ^ United Nations, Food. "Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations".
  16. ^ The State of Food and Agriculture 2019. Moving forward on food loss and waste reduction, In brief. Rome: FAO. 2019. p. 10.
  17. ^ The State of Food and Agriculture 2019. Moving forward on food loss and waste reduction, In brief. Rome: FAO. 2019. p. 5.
  18. ^ Environment, U. N. (2021-03-04). "UNEP Food Waste Index Report 2021". UNEP - UN Environment Programme. Retrieved 2021-05-04.
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  20. ^ a b c "Metadata-12-04-02" (PDF). United Nations Stats. Retrieved 19 September 2020.
  21. ^ United Nations. "Sustainable consumption and production". United Nations Sustainable Development. Retrieved 2020-11-26.
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  24. ^ a b "Metadata-12-07-01" (PDF). United Nations Stats. Retrieved 19 September 2020.
  25. ^ a b "Metadata-12-08-01" (PDF). United Nations Stats. Retrieved 18 September 2020.
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  27. ^ "Metadata-12-0b-01" (PDF). United Nations Stats. Retrieved 15 September 2020.
  28. ^ a b c "Metadata-12-0c-01" (PDF). United Nations Stats. Retrieved 15 September 2020.
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  30. ^ a b "Advancing the 2030 Agenda: Interlinkages and Common Themes at the HLPF 2018" (PDF). UN Sustainable Development. p. 30. Retrieved 15 September 2020.
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  32. ^ "Who we are". One Planet Netowrk. Retrieved 15 September 2020.
  33. ^ "Metadata-12-08-01" (PDF). United Nations Stats. Retrieved 18 September 2020.

External links[edit]