About Us


UN Home | DESAUN Economic and Social Development Home | Contact Us |  FAQs |  Site Index |  Search


   Changing Consumption and Production Patterns at CSD 7

Changing Consumption and Production Patterns was on the agenda of the 7th session of the CSD for a comprehensive review.  The Commission evaluated progress since 1992 and discussed priorities for the period 1999-2002. 

The preparations for the review of Changing Consumption and Production Patterns at the 1999 session  included a number of elements: 

1.  Secretary-General's Report on changing consumption and production patterns (E/CN.17/1999/2);

The SG report reviews  the Work Program on Changing Consumption and Production Patterns  by the UN and by other international, governmental, and non-governmental organizations, and proposes priorities for work in this area for the period 1999-2002. 

2.  UN guidelines for consumer protection and sustainable consumption

The CSD Secretariat prepared a  report on this issue for the 6th Session of the CSD in early 1998, based on the recommendations of the inter-regional expert group meeting held in São Paulo, Brazil, 28 - 30 January 1998

Based on that report, informal intergovernmental consultations were held in late 1998, resulting in an agreed text.  That text was endorsed by CSD-7 in April 1999 and by the Economic and Social Council in July 1999. It now goes to the General Assembly for final adoption as a GA resolution. 

For more information, see "Revision of the UN Guidelines for Consumer Protection". 

3. Report of the Ad Hoc Working Group.

Changing Consumption and Production Patterns were addressed at the Ad Hoc Working Group (22 to 26 February 1999). The report on this meeting includes a Co-Chairmen's Summary of the Discussions, and Possible Elements for a Draft Decision by the seventh session of the Commission on Sustainable Development. 

Report of the Inter-Sessional Ad Hoc Working Group on Consumption and Production Patterns and on Tourism and Sustainable Development (New York, 22-26 February 1999)

4. Other papers and publications.

A number of other papers related to consumption and production patterns were submitted to the Commission as discussion papers. 

a. Discussion papers on trends in consumption and production patterns, including household energy consumption, automobile ownership and use, and production and consumption of selected mineral resources. 

The first paper, "Trends in Consumption and Production: Household Energy Consumption" (ST/ESA/1999/DP.6), analyses current trends in household energy consumption throughout the world. It focuses exclusively on energy consumption within households (i.e. for lighting, cooking, heating, etc.). Energy use for transportation as well as indirect energy consumption (e.g. energy used in manufacturing of consumer goods) is not covered in this study. The analysis includes both regional trends and case studies of selected countries, both developed and developing countries. Recent patterns of household energy use, changes in consumer behavior, and governmental policies that impact on household energy consumption are reviewed. 

For mineral resources, aluminum, copper and lead have been selected for analysis in the second paper, "Trends in Consumption and Production: Selected Minerals" (ST/ESA/1999/DP.5) as representative of non-ferrous metals. Aluminium and copper are the most widely used non-ferrous metals in a variety of applications. Lead was selected because its toxicity has become a major health and environmental concern in recent decades. The paper reviews trends in production and recycling of these metals over the last two decades, trends in real price movements since 1970, substitution by other materials, environmental impacts of mining and metal production, and resource depletion. Particular emphasis is given to the issue of recycling of metal scrap, which constitutes a significant factor in their supply. Environmental benefits from recycling encompass energy savings, reduced volumes of waste, reduced disturbance of land, conservation of ore deposits, and reduced emissions. 

b. A paper on major groups case studies on sustainable consumption and production consisted of analytical case studies on the contributions of major groups in the area of sustainable consumption and production. For more information about this study, see "News and Trends" (April-May-June version) 

c.    "Measuring Changes in Consumption and Production Patterns - A Set of Indicators" (ST/ESA/264)
For more information see Indicators for Measuring Changes in Consumption and Production Patterns

d.    "Promoting Sustainable Production and Consumption: Five Policy Studies" (ST/ESA/1999/DP.6). 
For more information, see Policy Measures to Change Consumption and Production Patterns

5. Other Contributions.

Several side events on sustainable consumption were organized in the context of the Ad Hoc Working Group of the Commission on Sustainable Development and the 7th session of the commission. 

Side events during the Ad Hoc Working Group of CSD-7

Indicators for Sustainable Household Consumption
The German Wuppertal Institute organized a side event on the project "Indicators for Sustainable Household Consumption", in cooperation with the German Ministry for Environment, Nature Protection and Nuclear Safety. For more information see February-March version of News and Trends.

Side events during CSD-7

Gender and Sustainable Consumption
At the event, the report "Gender and Sustainable Consumption" was launched by UNEP-UK. 
For more information about the report, please see February-March version of "News and Trends".

International Business Forum on Sustainable Consumption and Production Patterns
This event was organized by UNEP and the Carl Duisberg Gesellschaft. For more information, please see the April-May-June version of  "News and Trends"

Down to Earth: Sustainable Consumption in the 21st Century
This event, on a conference to be held in Hampshire, UK on September 22-24th, was organized by  Project Integra,  Hampshire County Council and UNED-UK.  For more information about this event, see Forthcoming meetings

Operationalizing the UN Guidelines for Consumer Protection with Emphasis on Sustainable Production and Consumption - Tools, issues and a Case Study 
This event was organized by The Consumer Unity and Trust Society(CUTS), India. 
The April-May-June version of News and Trends contains more information about subject of the event. 

Marine Stewardship Council
For more information about the Marine Stewardship Council, please see December 1998 - January 1999 version of  News and Trends.

UN Guidelines for Consumer Protection: Past Achievements and Future Potential
This event was organised by Consumers International. The Guidelines, which cover such areas as consumer safety, redress, product standards, education and information, have proven to be one of the most practical policy frameworks ever enacted by the international comunity. Speakers discussed how they have been used as a basis for consumer protection legislation introduced in many nations around the world to safeguard the health and economic interest of consumer and citizens 

The extension contains scores of recomendations to governments on ways to promote sustainability and discourage unsustainable consumption patterns in land use, transportation, energy, housing and other areas. These include "common but differentiated responsibilities" among industrialised and developing countries to reverse environmental degradation through recycling programmes, creation of environmental health and safety standards, "green" criteria and life-cicle analysis for product testing, management of harmful substances and development of economic instruments and subsidies to promote sustainability in both production and consumption 

Factor 4 and 10 in the Nordic Countries
For more information about this event organised by the Nordic Council of Ministers, please see April-May-June version of News and Trends.

Partnership arrangements in their action towards Sustainable Consumption Patterns
For more information about the organiser of this event, see United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE)

The right of consumers in the garment sector
This event was organised by the Netherlands Committee for International Cooperation and Sustainable Development. 

Sustainable Production and Consumption: the agenda of the South, cases from Chile and Brazil
This event was organised by Friends of the Earth. 

Extended Producer Responsibility as a tool for sustainable production and consumption
This event was organised by the Northern Alliance for Sustainability (ANPED). 

SPAC Watch: Monitoring Progress towards Sustainable Consumption and Production
The NGO caucus on Sustainable Production and Consumption organised this event. 


Copyright © United Nations |  Terms of Use | Privacy Notice
Comments and suggestions
27 June 2005