United NationsDepartment of Economic and Social Affairs Sustainable Development
Goals
12

Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns

Targets and Indicators

Target

12.1

Implement the 10-year framework of programmes on sustainable consumption and production, all countries taking action, with developed countries taking the lead, taking into account the development and capabilities of developing countries

12.1.1

Number of countries with sustainable consumption and production (SCP) national action plans or SCP mainstreamed as a priority or a target into national policies

Target

12.2

By 2030, achieve the sustainable management and efficient use of natural resources

12.2.1

Material footprint, material footprint per capita, and material footprint per GDP

12.2.2

Domestic material consumption, domestic material consumption per capita, and domestic material consumption per GDP

Target

12.3

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

12.3.1

Global food loss index

Target

12.4

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

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

12.4.2

Hazardous waste generated per capita and proportion of hazardous waste treated, by type of treatment

Target

12.5

By 2030, substantially reduce waste generation through prevention, reduction, recycling and reuse

12.5.1

National recycling rate, tons of material recycled

Target

12.6

Encourage companies, especially large and transnational companies, to adopt sustainable practices and to integrate sustainability information into their reporting cycle

12.6.1

Number of companies publishing sustainability reports

Target

12.7

Promote public procurement practices that are sustainable, in accordance with national policies and priorities

12.7.1

Number of countries implementing sustainable public procurement policies and action plans

Target

12.8

By 2030, ensure that people everywhere have the relevant information and awareness for sustainable development and lifestyles in harmony with nature

12.8.1

Extent to which (i) global citizenship education and (ii) education for sustainable development (including climate change education) are mainstreamed in (a) national education policies; (b) curricula; (c) teacher education; and (d) student assessment

Target

12.a

Support developing countries to strengthen their scientific and technological capacity to move towards more sustainable patterns of consumption and production

12.a.1

Amount of support to developing countries on research and development for sustainable consumption and production and environmentally sound technologies

Target

12.b

Develop and implement tools to monitor sustainable development impacts for sustainable tourism that creates jobs and promotes local culture and products

12.b.1

Number of sustainable tourism strategies or policies and implemented action plans with agreed monitoring and evaluation tools

Target

12.c

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

12.c.1

Amount of fossil-fuel subsidies per unit of GDP (production and consumption) and as a proportion of total national expenditure on fossil fuels

Progress and Info

For decades, scientists have been laying out how humanity is driving the three planetary crises: the climate crisis, the biodiversity crisis, and the pollution crisis, all linked to unsustainable production and consumption. Changes in consumption and production patterns can help promote decoupling of economic growth and human well-being from resource use and environmental impacts. It can also trigger the transformations envisaged by global commitments on biodiversity, climate and sustainable development at large. COVID-19 provides a window of opportunity to explore more inclusive and equitable development models underpinned by sustainable consumption and production.

From 2017 to 2020, 83 countries, territories and the EU have shared information on their contribution to the implementation of the 10-Year Framework of Programmes on Sustainable Consumption and Production. In 2020, 136 policies and 27 implementation activities were reported, bringing the total number to over 700. While specific actions have been undertaken to improve the efficiency of resource use in a specific industry or area, this has not resulted in their widespread adoption across sectors and industries.

Data indicates a rise in global material footprint per capita by almost 40%, from 8.8 metric tons in 2000 to 12.2 metric tons in 2017. Similarly, the domestic material consumption (DMC) per capita rose by more than 40% from 8.7 metric tons in 2000 to 12.2 metric tons in 2017.

Although data is limited, globally, as of 2016, almost 14% of the world’s food is lost from production before reaching the retail level. Estimates vary across regions, from 20.7% in Central and Southern Asia to 5.8% in Australia and New Zealand.

In 2019, the amount of e-waste generated was 7.3 kg per capita, and only 1.7 kg per capita is documented to be managed in an environmentally sustainable manner. E-waste generation is expected to grow by 0.16 kg per capita annually to 9.0 kg per capita in 2030. The realized annual growth rate of e-waste recycling in the past decade was 0.05 kg per capita and will need to be more than 10 times higher to ensure recycling of all e-waste by 2030.

A pilot review conducted in 2020 of a random sample of about 4,000 companies reporting, based on the UN Global Compact Database and GRI Sustainability Disclosure Database, shows that 85% of companies reported on minimum requirements on sustainability issues and 40% reported on advanced requirements on sustainability issues.

As of December 2020, 40 countries had reported on Sustainable Public Procurement policies and action plans (or equivalent legal dispositions), to encourage the procurement of environmentally sound, energy-efficient products, and to promote more socially responsible purchasing practices and sustainable supply chains.

Fossil fuel subsidies saw a decline in 2019 to $431.6 billion due to lower fuel prices, breaking an upward trend from 2017 and 2018. It is likely that fossil fuel subsidies would have a steep decline owing to cratering demand due to COVID-19 mitigation efforts and the oil price shock in 2020.

Source: Advance unedited copy of 2021 report of the Secretary-General on Progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals