Panel Discussion on Sustainable Consumption and Production in the Post-2015 Agenda

SCP2Mr. Hoballah introduced the importance of sustainable consumption and production (SCP) in the post-2015 development agenda. Mr. Patriota explained that sustainable development requires transforming consumption and production patterns. The the 10-year Framework of Programmes on Sustainable Consumption and Production Patterns (10YFP) should accelerate the shift towards SCP, which will promote a universal, transformative agenda that eradicates poverty in a sustained fashion. All countries must promote SCP and change behaviors and values to balance overconsuming nations with greater responsibilities. Sustainable development is about teaching future generations to cooperate internationally and be aware and respectful of diversity and humanity. SCP promotes development that is socially inclusive, economically viable, provides access to sanitation and health services, increases wages, and encourages gender equality. It must be embraced by civil society and the private sector in order  to support negotiations for the post-2015 agenda. The Permanent Representative of Finland discussed three aspects of SCP: to promote effective, efficient use of resources, to innovate, and to fulfill basic needs in a sustainable manner. The 10YFP is an important tool for implementing SCP, but it requires public and private financing; therefore, private incentives must be aligned with public goals. Mr. Hoballah discussed financing, policy, and targets of SCP, including contributions to climate mitigation. Mr. Ngculu addressed the importance of SCP to support 10YFP. Poverty remains the greatest challenge confronting developing countries. The 10YFP has a large role to play in post-2015 for Africa. Ms. Alfieri discussed national SCP policies and cited indicators as key instruments for implementing the post-2015 agenda. She also discussed SCP’s relationship to statistics and the environment. Ms. Riddlestone addressed civil society’s role in implementation and warned that the world is consuming 50% more resources than it can replenish. Ms. Henley discussed the private sector’s contribution to SCP and the 10YFP, focusing on generating industry action and sustainable building practice.

 

Meeting: Interactive panel discussion on “Sustainable Consumption and Production and the post-2015 development agenda: what needs to be implemented and measured” (co-organized by the Permanent Missions of Brazil and Finland, the secretariat of the 10-year Framework of Programmes on Sustainable Consumption and Production Patterns (10YFP) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP))
Date & Location: 18 February 2015.  Conference Room 11, United Nations Headquarters, New York
Speakers: Moderator Mr. Arab Hoballah, Chief of the Sustainable Lifestyles Cities and Industry Branch of UNEP’s Division of Technology, Industry and Economics (DTIE); H.E. Mr. Antonio de Aguiar Patriota, Permanent Representative of Brazil to the United Nations; H.E. Mr. Kai Jürgen Mikael Sauer, Permanent Representative of Finland to the United Nations; Ms. Alessandra Alfieri, Chief of Environmental-Economic Accounts Section, United Nations Statistics Division; Ms. Sue Riddlestone, Chief Executive and Co-Founder of Bioregional; and Ms. Jane Henley, CEO, World Green Building Council; Mr. Thembela Ngculu, Counsellor, Permanent Mission of the Republic of South Africa to the United Nations, and board member of the 10YFP Several National Representatives
Written by WIT Representative: Ellie Guner
Edited by WIT Representative: Philip Bracey

UN Agencies joining hands to bring about Sustainable Consumption and Production

part 1- SCP-circle-picIn recognizing the cross-cutting nature in implementing sustainable consumption and production (SCP), the 10YFP Framework for Sustainable Development convened a panel to inform the community of the progress of implementation in various sectors. Ms. Alvarez-Rivero and Mr. Arden-Clarke opened the discussion by stating that the three-pillared nature of sustainable development means that no one single UN agency can take on the enormous task of promoting SCP alone, and the inter-linkage of different aspects necessitates the need of sharing of best practices among UN agencies.

Mr. Hoballah began by giving an account of the 10YFP programmes, ranging from sustainable construction to public procurement. Ms. Brennen-Haylock detailed the Food and Agricultural Organization’s work in promoting food sustainability. She highlighted the universality of this aspect of SCP, such that the food sustainability achieved by developed countries improved the food security of developed and developing countries alike. Ms. Jensen spoke on the role of sustainable lifestyle and sustainable development education, which involves not only encouraging reduction of consumption but also the instilling of the idea of responsible citizenship. She said that in achieving this massive change in attitude, cultivation of critical thinking skills is required so that future students can fabricate their tailored responses to the consumption problems of their time. Mr. Chung added that in implementing SCP at regional level, sharing of best practices and policy proposals is necessary to allow economies of diverse backgrounds to tailor-make their own responses to sustainable development.

One major question from the floor is whether the link between sustainable production and consumption pattern and the idea of planetary boundary have been integrated in the framework’s work in promoting the SCP. The panelists stated that while the earlier concept is well integrated in their work, lack of political impetus means the latter is yet to be a dominant concept.

Meeting Title: One UN for Sustainable Consumption and Production (SCP): joint action to implement the 10YFP agenda
Speakers: Ms. Birgitte Bryld Alvarez-Rivero, UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Co-Chair of the 10YFP Inter-Agency Coordination Group (IACG); Mr. Charles Arden-Clarke, Acting Head of the 10YFP Secretariat, United Nations Environment; Mr. Arab Hoballah, United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), Chief, SCP Branch; Ms. Sharon Brennen-Haylock, Director of FAO Liaison Office in New York Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), Bringing Sustainable Food Systems in the 10YFP; Ms. Vibeke Jensen, Director of UNESCO New York Office, United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO); Mr. Rae Kwon Chung, Director, Environment and Development Division, United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UN ESCAP)
Location: Economic and Social Council Chamber, United Nations Headquarters
Date: 30 June 2014
Written By WIT Representative: Harrison Chung
Edited by WIT Representative: Aslesha Dhillon