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Development Account Projects

Supporting developing countries in delivering sustainable consumption and production services at the country level

Background:

Since the holding of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development in Rio de Janeiro in 1992, there has been international recognition that the major cause of the continued deterioration of the global environment is unsustainable patterns of consumption and production. Today, cities account for 3 per cent of total land surface, but consume 75 per cent of natural resources and produce 50 per cent of global waste. Sixty per cent of all studied ecosystems have been damaged in the past 50 years or are being used unsustainably. Another 1 to 3 billion middle-class consumers will emerge by 2030, mainly in cities, putting additional pressure on natural resources and the environment. Sustainable consumption and production seeks to decouple economic growth and environmental degradation by increasing the efficiency of resource use and reducing degradation and pollution throughout the life cycles of products, while increasing quality of life and bringing about the adoption of sustainable lifestyles.

Sustainable consumption and production can contribute significantly to poverty eradication and the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals. As a framework for development, it offers opportunities such as the creation of new markets and green jobs (e.g., markets for organic food, fair trade, sustainable housing, sustainable transport and tourism, and energy efficiency) as well as more efficient natural resource management that enhances well-being. It is also an opportunity to leapfrog to more resource-efficient, environmentally sound and competitive technologies. It requires the building of cooperation among Governments and all stakeholders as well as across sectors in all countries.

At the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, world leaders adopted the 10-Year Framework of Programmes on Sustainable Consumption and Production. The Framework is a global plan of action to enhance international cooperation aimed at accelerating the shift towards sustainable consumption and production in both developed and developing countries. The Framework will support capacity-building and provide technical and financial assistance to developing countries for this shift. It will provide for the development, replication and scaling-up of sustainable consumption and production and resource efficiency initiatives at the national and regional levels, decoupling environmental degradation and resource use from economic growth and increasing the net contribution of economic activities to poverty eradication and social development.

The main objective of the proposed project is to contribute to the implementation, under the 10‑Year Framework of Programmes on Sustainable Consumption and Production, of sustainable consumption and production policies at the country level by providing financial and technical assistance to developing countries and countries with economies in transition. The project activities will respond to countries’ priorities and needs. More specifically, the project will:
(a) assist countries in the development of sustainable consumption and production national action plans or in mainstreaming sustainable consumption and production into existing development strategies (e.g., sustainable development strategies, poverty reduction strategies); and (b) support the implementation of sustainable consumption and production in specific sectors or policies responding to the key national priorities identified in existing national sustainable consumption and production action plans or related strategies. Countries targeted in the first set of activities will differ from those targeted in the second and will be chosen on the basis of their current level of progress in the creation or implementation of sustainable consumption and production national action plans.

The project will focus on the regions of Africa, Asia and Latin America and the Caribbean, responding to their national and regional priorities. These were identified in Latin America and the Caribbean in the sustainable consumption and production strategy for that region (including national sustainable consumption and production action plans, sustainable public procurement, education and sustainable lifestyles and an information network on sustainable consumption and production); in Asia through various consultations (on sustainable public procurement, eco-labelling, sustainable tourism, economic instruments and education aimed at sustainable consumption and production); and in Africa under the African regional 10-Year Framework of Programmes on Sustainable Consumption and Production (including national action plans on sustainable consumption and production, eco-labelling, agriculture, resource efficiency and clean manufacturing).

Objective:

To increase the capacity of targeted developing countries to deliver sustainable consumption and production policies at the national level, accelerating the shift towards sustainable consumption and production patterns

Expected accomplishments:

  • Increased political commitment, partnerships and investment opportunities for sustainable consumption and production, based on sustainable consumption and production national action plans developed and/or the integration of the sustainable consumption and production approach, policies and tools into relevant development strategies (e.g., national sustainable development strategies and poverty reduction strategies) in two selected target countries
  • Increased implementation of sustainable consumption and production policies increasing resource efficiency and creating new economic and social opportunities, including sectoral policies, in response to priorities identified in existing national sustainable consumption and production action plans or related strategies in three selected target countries

Implementation status:

In progress.