Monday, 20 November 2017

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What is my country doing to implement the Sustainable Development Goals?

Recycling

07.03.2016 - The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) were adopted by consensus (without a vote) in a resolution (A/RES/70/1) by the General Assembly of the United Nations on 25 September 2015.

Information about an individual country's engagement with the Sustainable Development Goals is available through the Sustainable Development Knowledge Portal.

The portal contains a wealth of information on how each of the participating member states is working to implement the goals. Each country page lists a focal contact, available national reports and statements, as well as voluntary commitments and partnerships.

Western European countries are striving towards living sustainably and implementing goals such as Goal 12: Responsible consumption and production. Here’s how:

Belgium

Awareness raising: Communication campaigns are organised regularly, targeted at schools, organisers of large events and shops drawing their attention to the importance of waste prevention. To raise awareness among companies and stimulate them to focus on waste prevention, a software package was developed by the authorities enabling companies to calculate the true costs of their waste production.

Subsidisation: Municipalities that launch waste prevention initiatives (e.g. the promotion of re‐ usable diapers, the installation of drinking fountains in schools and the promotion of lunch boxes) can get financial support from the government. Companies that invest in techniques that contribute to waste reduction are also entitled to subsidies.

Belgian Waste Management strategy

France

Acknowledging that the “broad dissemination of information is essential to bring change to the consumption habits of our citizens”, France has committed to sustainable initiatives, in particular through pioneering actions such as the Sustainable Development Week, in place since 2003. The Environment Grenelle strengthened France’s commitment to access for all citizens to environmental information.

A web portal providing environmental information, suggested in the Grenelle 1 Law, was launched in June 2009. It tends towards information, documents and data concerning the environment, which are available free of charge on existing public portals and sites. One of the key measures of France’s voluntary sustainable consumption policy is undoubtedly the launch of the eco-pastille on January 1st 2008, also referred to as r the ecological bonus-malus scheme, for the purchase of new vehicles. This mechanism reduces or increases the cost of acquisition of CO2-emitting vehicles in application of the polluter-pays principle.

French sustainability report

The Netherlands

The Netherlands´ Ministry of Agriculture facilitated the development of a ´Sustainability Scorecard´ for companies involved in agribusiness. With the Scorecard, which is publicly accessible on the internet, companies can monitor their sustainability performance and this may motivate them to improve their sustainability strategy.

Netherlands agriculture report 

United Kingdom

The ACT ON CO2 is a public campaign that was launched in 2007 aimed at increasing awareness and understanding of climate change and wider environmental issues, specifically the actions people can take to reduce their impact on the environment.



The ACT ON CO2 Calculator is an engaging and simple web-based tool that allows people to calculate their personal or household carbon footprint. Users can compare their footprint to the UK statistical average to see how they compare with other people. The Calculator also provides an Action Plan with a list of personalised recommendations about how to reduce carbon emissions.

UK Consumption and Production Report

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UNRICs Related Links

· Sustainable Development Knowledge Platform

· Participating Member States Portal

Photo Credit: Andy Arthur

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