In this article, we’re going to look at the importance of Goal 12 for businesses like yours, and understand the steps you can take to help tackle these challenges in a more sustainable way.

Climate Change

Climate change is happening right now and it is a headline risk for the ongoing success of your business. Things we do such as burning fossil fuels, and clearing forests release greenhouse gases, which make the planet become warmer. If businesses like yours don’t do something and continue with business as usual, there will be short-term disruption and impacts on profits and long-term we’re looking at a disastrous rise in global temperatures. These issues are driven by prolonged heatwaves, droughts and extreme weather events which are becoming more common and severe. Nowhere in the world would be immune. These changes will impact the natural systems that we depend on for food, water and other materials.

Macro Trends

By 2050, there will be nearly 10 billion people on Earth. If we keep using resources as we do now, we’ll need three planets to keep up. This could lead to serious problems, like extreme heat, not enough water, and more diseases.

The Vicious Cycle: Agriculture and Climate Change

Looking for cheap products has driven costs out of agriculture and led to cutting down forests and changing land, and using lots of fossil fuel based input, which has helped to make climate change worse. It’s like a never-ending cycle. Agriculture is also uniquely vulnerable to climate change as it is underpinned by natural systems. Companies in sectors that rely on agriculture, such as food and textiles, are making things worse by using up a lot of resources.

Why Goal 12?

SDG Goal 12 refers to “Responsible Consumption and Production,” and it is one of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) established by the United Nations. The goal aims to ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns to promote social, economic, and environmental well-being. Key objectives of Goal 12 include:

  1. Sustainable Consumption: Encouraging individuals and organisations to consume goods and services in a more sustainable and efficient manner. This involves reducing waste, choosing environmentally friendly products, and making informed decisions about consumption.
  2. Sustainable Production: Promoting the implementation of sustainable practices in the production of goods and services. This includes improving resource efficiency and minimising the environmental and social impact of production processes and supply chains.
  3. Waste Reduction: Targeting the reduction of waste generation through recycling, reuse, and responsible disposal. Efforts are made to minimise the environmental and social impact of waste, with a focus on the entire lifecycle of products.
  4. Resource Efficiency: Promoting the efficient use of natural resources, including water, energy, and raw materials, to ensure their availability for future generations.
  5. Environmental Reporting: Ensuring that businesses measure and report on these key issues in a consistent and accurate way.

The importance of Goal 12 lies in its role as a catalyst for change for our consumption-driven economy. Reducing the impact of consumption and production patterns is essential as they significantly impact global challenges such as climate change, biodiversity loss, pollution, and resource depletion. By adopting more sustainable practices, you can work support a more equitable and environmentally resilient future.

How You Can Help

It’s time for you to take action and support sustainable production and consumption. Let’s hold businesses accountable so they make a big difference. They need to understand how they impact the environment and wider society, reduce these impacts and also create positive contributions.

I’ve been working with businesses for almost 20 years, helping them become more sustainable. I get that it’s tough — everybody wants to do good, but there’s so much confusion. That’s why I started Achieve Goal 12. I can help your business by clearing up the important issues, cutting through the noise, and giving you the tools to make a real impact. If this sounds like your situation, shoot me a message, and let’s chat about where you’re at, what you want to achieve, and how I can help your team.