United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs Sustainable Development


As has been highlighted by several delegations, UNEP has been very active in the areas of Sustainable Consumption and Production and resource efficiency. It has been repeatedly mentioned - and let me say it one more time - a shift to Sustainable Consumption and Production (SCP) is necessary to decouple economic growth from environmental degradation, and thus sustain economic development and the human welfare gains which flow from it (e.g. job creation, poverty reduction, improvement in health and education). This implies that meeting basic needs in a sustainable manner is at the core of SCP. SCP also offers opportunities to achieve the Millennium Development Goals by delivering more products and services, in a cleaner and safer way, using less materials and energy. SCP is really about ?doing more and better with less?.
We are here today to examine SCP, and more specifically the 10 Year Framework of Programmes. Let me share with you what could be the basis of your discussions. A lot has been done already and we need to further build on good practices and lessons learned. Without excluding other relevant initiatives, allow me to highlight the work of the Marrakesh Process.
What is the Marrakesh Process?
The Marrakech Process is a global and informal multi-stakeholder process that has two main objectives: 1) support the implementation of SCP policies and capacity building, and 2) provide inputs for the elaboration of a 10-Year Framework of Programmes on SCP (10YFP) that will be discussed and reviewed by the member states and major groups of this CSD cycle.
The Marrakech Process has adopted a bottom-up and participatory approach with an active participation of representatives of national governments, regional organizations, major groups, stakeholders and other organizations involved in implementing SCP.
Regarding its first objective, the Marrakech Process has developed good SCP practices, policies and tools, and new and innovative mechanisms to support SCP implementation at all levels (national, regional and global) with the cooperation of governments and a wide network of stakeholders, including collaboration with UNIDO on cleaner production.
We would like to thank and congratulate all the countries and partners that have been active in promoting SCP in their regions and countries, as well as the countries that have initiated the Task Forces. Thanks to them, we can today report concrete outcomes, such as the SCP
May 2010
programmes/strategies that have been developed in most regions, reflecting a high level of interest in and commitment to SCP in both developed and developing countries, and here I refer you to CSD background paper BP4. To illustrate regional progress let me say that Africa, Latin America and the Arab regions have developed their regional SCP strategies, with the support of their regional institutions. These strategies identified regional priorities to accelerate the shift towards SCP, which were adopted at the Regional Implementation Meetings last autumn.
The Marrakech Process includes seven task forces on tourism, buildings and construction, sustainable lifestyles, education, procurement, sustainable products and cooperation with Africa.
They are voluntary initiatives led by governments which - in cooperation with partners from major groups in both developing and developed countries - focus on a specific SCP theme. They have developed activities and programmes that promote SCP at national and regional levels, strengthening North-South and South-South cooperation.
Some highlights of the work of the task forces include: A practical approach to sustainable public procurement, involving in particular ministries of Environment and Finance. Green Passport campaign for awareness-raising, addressed at tourists. Development of an African Eco-labelling Mechanism. Better understanding of sustainable lifestyles through a global survey. Guidelines for education for sustainable consumption (?Here and Now?). A baseline study on buildings and climate change mitigation, looking at energy efficiency in buildings and construction with related policies and tools.
We would also like to highlight the dialogue that the Marrakech Process has started with development cooperation agencies and regional development banks, as well as with the business sector, in order to increase their support for SCP.
Regarding the second objective of the Marrakech Process - which is to contribute to the elaboration of a 10 year framework of programmes; through an extensive consultation process at all levels the Marrakech Process identified key priorities and needs in specific sectors and policy areas that could be included in the 10YFP to be discussed during the CSD (this was done through 22 regional consultations world-wide, 3 international meetings and 8 roundtables at the national level).
Based on the regional inputs and on-going relevant initiatives as well as UNEP and UNDESA?s work and expertise, the programmes to which governments and stakeholders could voluntarily commit to, could include the following:
? SCP action plans and mainstreaming SCP in development and infrastructure strategies;
? Sustainable public procurement
? Education and awareness-raising for sustainable living
? Corporate social and environmental responsibility
? Product design and sustainable production
? Information and education for sustainable consumption
? Waste management
? Sectoral programmes such as:
? sustainable agriculture/food,
? sustainable building and construction/cities,
? sustainable transport,
? sustainable tourism,
? industrial manufacturing, and
? conservation, sustainable management and use of key resources such as energy and water.
We believe that the 10YFP is a good opportunity to deliver change and accelerate the shift to SCP. It could also provide one important building block in advancing the agenda of sustainable development, resource efficiency and green economy, hence contributing to Rio+20.
Activities initiated under the Marrakech Process could be expanded, scaled-up and replicated. Various countries have already expressed their interest in supporting SCP implementation, in setting up new SCP initiatives and task forces.
UNEP believes that all the work done so far at global, regional and national levels constitutes an important stock of information, knowledge and best practices that needs to be further valued, supporting the elaboration of a more structured process that builds on existing institutions and initiatives such as the Marrakech Process, to support regional and national initiatives in the development and implementation of the 10YFP that might emerge from this CSD cycle.
Finally, the work on SCP has been subject to an exemplary cooperation between UNEP and UNDESA and an intensive consultative process at all levels, bringing together stakeholders to discuss in a constructive way the challenges of SCP and its driving power towards sustainable development.