Goal 12: Responsible
consumption, production

Women at a community centre in Darfur, Sudan. Photo: Albert González Farran/UN

Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns

Achieving economic growth and sustainable development requires that we urgently reduce our ecological footprint by changing the way we produce and consume goods and resources. Agriculture is the biggest user of water worldwide, and irrigation now claims close to 70 percent of all freshwater appropriated for human use.

The efficient management of our shared natural resources, and the way we dispose of toxic waste and pollutants, are important targets to achieve this goal.  Encouraging industries, businesses and consumers to recycle and reduce waste is equally important, as is supporting developing countries to move towards more sustainable patterns of consumption by 2030.

A large share of the world population is still consuming far too little to meet even their basic needs. Halving per capita global food waste at the retailer and consumer levels is also important for creating more efficient production and supply chains. This can help with food security and shift us towards a more resource efficient economy.

Responsible production and consumption is one of 17 Global Goals that make up the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. An integrated approach is crucial for progress across the multiple goals.

Learn more about the targets for Goal 12.

Our work

UNDP in Ghana
How agro-commodity traders can help the SDGs and reduce poverty

With the global population predicted to reach nine billion by 2050, we face a dual challenge: ensuring the continued production of agricultural commodities without destroying the planet’s natural resources.more 

Woman working
UNDP in Malawi
Malawi women turn waste into a sustainable living

The women are turning garbage into compost manure, benefiting financially and improving their environment. In 2010, UNDP and UN Habitat launched the Waste for Wealth project.more 

UNDP in Kazakhstan
Kazakhstan tackles its electronic waste problem

Through an unusual public-private partnership, Kazakhstan is making changes with its e-waste. Aigul Manataeva is meticulous about clearing out household junk.more 

UNDP in Ethiopia
From seed to market, transforming agriculture

Ethiopia is in the midst of important agricultural shifts that are changing the way smallholder farmers do business. A new organization is bringing in modern planting practices.more 

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