Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns

SDG 12 - Sustainable Consumption and Production

Production and consumption are the driving force of various economies worldwide. This puts pressure on the environment to meet production demands to support the growth of these economies. Hence, the continuous exploitation of natural resources, which has a destructive impact on the environment and by extension, the planet. Many natural disasters such as floods have resulted from that and have killed thousands of people and caused huge financial loss in many countries.  

Activities related to production and consumption have resulted in the contamination of water bodies such that only 3% of the world's water is fresh and safe for human consumption. Unfortunately, the rate at which humans use this less available amount of safe water is much faster than the rate at which it is replenished by nature. As a result, many people depend on contaminated and infested water sources for survival, thus jeopardizing their health.

Food production accounts for 30 percent of the world's total energy consumption and produces 22 percent of Greenhouse Gas emissions such as Carbon dioxide (CO2) (Food and Agriculture Organization, 2011). Aside from the effect of food production on the environment, there is also the challenge of food loss and wastage even though many people still go hungry in some parts of the world. It is, therefore, necessary to address food wastage right from the retailer and consumer levels to attain sustainable production and supply chains and food security.

To this end, efficient management of resources and proper handling of chemical waste is paramount since failure to do so will massively affect the health of populations. Achieving this requires the commitment of governments and civil societies of both developed developing countries for a safe planet by 2030.


Daniel Kipo
PhD student
University of Basel