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As supply chains within the garment and footwear sector are becoming increasingly complex, the need for transparency is more relevant than ever. Consumers, investors and shareholders are pressing for transparent business activities as well as the prevention and mitigation of risks in value chains,…
Minerals such as lithium, cobalt, and copper are essential for digitalization, for renewable energy technologies, and for the further deployment of electric vehicles. Demand for these and other minerals – known as “critical raw materials” (CRMs) – is growing fast as governments and businesses act…
A variety of European and African representatives from business, science, and government presented initiatives to raise awareness of universal sustainable resource management systems at the EU-Africa Business Forum. Experts called for further integration of European and African value chains through…
UNECE led a coalition of international experts to train raw material experts in sustainable resource management. COP26 added much needed impetus towards climate action. Raw materials will be a pivotal part of the conversation in driving innovation in a regional circular economy including recycling…
The global economy enters 2022 with new challenges. Almost two years into the Covid-19 pandemic the digitalization of transport and trade data flows is on top of the economic agenda. In response, UNECE organized its 4th workshop on trade facilitation, Single Window, and data sharing for the Western…
If the world is to deliver on climate change and attain the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development objectives, we must optimize our endowments of natural resources.  A resilient and sustainable supply of natural resources, including critical raw minerals, is essential for sustainable energy,…
Complex global value chains include production facilities scattered all over the world. Sometimes, they may also involve practices of illegitimate subcontracting and undeclared informal work.  In fact, their complexity and opacity make it very hard to gain accurate information about how and where…
As all eyes turn to Glasgow where world leaders have gathered at COP26 for crucial negotiations to cut greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and limit global warming, UNECE experts highlight how improved transparency and traceability could be part of the solution. The private sector has a vital role to…
The Group of 7 nations (G7), six of which are UNECE member States (Canada, France, Germany, Italy, the UK and the US), took bold step towards reducing barriers to trade by agreeing on the principles to govern cross-border data use and digital trade. At their meeting in London on 22 October,…
The progress of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable development hinges on the availability of natural resources and a transition to sustainable means of their production and use. Minerals and petroleum provide the raw materials needed for the economy. While a low-carbon economy requires a wide variety …
Realization of the Sustainable Development Goals will require massive inputs of low-carbon energy, critical raw materials, and other natural resources, including land and water. These demands are aggravated by rapid urbanization of the world’s population, which stresses grid-based power,…
With the UN Food Systems Summit taking place next week under the auspices of the UN General Assembly (23 September 2021), we must recognize that the food systems we have built over recent decades are unsustainable. The food choices we make every day as consumers and producers of food are having a…
A coordinated response is necessary for promoting and implementing the circular economy agenda globally. Concrete commitments from governments, businesses, international organizations, civil society and other stakeholders will be key to building the sustainable, resilient and low-carbon economy…
By Ms. Olga Algayerova, UN Under-Secretary-General and Executive Secretary of UNECE, and Ms. Elisabete Quintas da Silva, Head of Department, Sustainable and Efficient Use of Resources Operational Programme, Government of Portugal, and Chair of the UNECE Committee on Environmental Policy.  This…
While consumer demand for sustainable goods is an important driver for change, regulation and policy change are essential if the world is to side-step a climate catastrophe and bend traditional linear economic models towards a circular economy and sustainable future. Until recently it wasn’t clear…
Waste has turned into one of humanity’s predominant challenges. The generation of hazardous waste increased from an estimated 259 metric tonnes in 2007 to 394 metric tonnes in 2015; the most significant increases were from lower middle-income and higher middle-income countries and despite policy…
Consumers are increasingly interested in making more environmentally and ethically aware choices when it comes to the clothes and shoes they wear, according to a series of recent studies. But the sector is awash with complex language and misleading labelling that makes it difficult for consumers to…
The current patterns of raw material consumption are unstainable and are becoming an existential threat to the planet.  The United Nations Framework Classification for Resources (UNFC) offers a solution to support a total transformation towards a sustainable resource management future. To support…
Technologies can play a key role in the transition from a linear towards circular economy. Circular strategies represent key investments to shape trade and logistics that are more resilient, resource-efficient and cost-effective, supporting the Sustainable Development Goals. However, the risk…
The risk that advances in digital technology benefit those who are already online and could contribute to greater inequality within and among countries needs to be addressed by effective policies, leaving no one behind.    The United Nations system is engaged to help address these challenges.…
The European Green Deal is a new growth strategy aiming to transform the European Union into a modern, resource-efficient and competitive economy. The European Green Deal has a number of overarching objectives, including for the European Union to reach net-zero GHG emissions by 2050; promotion of…