Sustainable Production and Consumption: SDG 12

| August 8, 2016

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In September 2015, the United Nations adopted 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) with the aim of shaping international efforts to address poverty, hunger, health, education, climate change, and infrastructure development, following up on the Millennium Development Goals.

SDG 12 promotes sustainable production and consumption, including resource and energy efficiency, sustainable infrastructure, and access to services, green jobs, and a better quality of life. The goal can be summarized as “doing more and better with less.” This means less pollution and waste at all stages of production and consumption.

“Youth Leading Sustainably” is also the theme of this year’s International Youth Day.

The simple fact is that too much food is wasted. Each year, an estimated one-third (1.3 billion tonnes) of all food produced rots in the garbage bins of consumers and retailers, or spoils during transportation or storage. Producing and transporting food also accounts for about 30% of the world’s energy consumption, and more than 20% of total greenhouse gas emissions.

“Doing more and better with less” means reducing waste, spoilage, and other post-harvest losses. It also means using renewable energy sources. SDG 12 also seeks to protect land, soil fertility, fish stocks, and water supplies.

To learn more about sustainable production and consumption, go to: