Sustainable consumption and production for poverty alleviation

United Nations Environment Programme (2012)

This paper explores the type and quality of linkages between the objective of achieving sustainable consumption and production (SCP) patterns, and those of poverty alleviation and sustainable development. The paper constructs a theoretical framework based on the analysis of development specialists, as well as scenarios and empirical data which show how natural resources and the environment underpin development efforts. A number of case studies in key economic sectors, including energy, agriculture, waste management and urban development are provided, to validate this theoretical framework. These case studies identify and where possible quantify the combination of economic, social and environmental gains secured by shifting towards SCP patterns. The relationship between indicators of development and SCP is also explored, highlighting important overlaps and complementarities between them. The papers conclusions highlight the economic and social gains for developing countries from the shift to SCP, which also sustains nature’s productive ecosystems.