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What to report on SDG 12

Reporting is open throughout the year. The deadline for the current reporting period is 15 January, 2021.  

- Reporting on activities: outputs, outcomes and impacts

All partners in the One Planet network are invited to report on their activities that are working towards sustainable consumption and production (SCP).

Activities are categorised as either outputs or outcomes. Organisations also have the opportunity to report against the impact the work is having on:

Click on an activity below for a guide and examples of what to report.

Output-oriented activities:

Training for SCP Outreach and Communication for SCP Production and use of SCP knowledge resources and technical tools

Outcome-oriented activities:

  • Outcome-oriented activities signal progress towards the effective implementation and use of the resources, tools, and solutions available in the network.
  • They constitute the basis for replication and scaling-up of successful practices, a priority highlighted in the One Planet network strategy.
  • In particular, successful SCP Changes in Practice offer entry points to measure real impact.

For partners with outcome-oriented activities, reporting is especially valuable for the network and for improving the knowledge base on sustainable consumption and production.

Policy instruments SCP monitoring and reporting SCP Changes in Practices
Education on SCP Institutional arrangements for SCP High-level SCP commitments 

Reporting activity impacts:

Resource Efficiency Environmental Impact Human Well-Being

About the indicators and methodology

The One Planet network is measuring the shift towards Sustainable Consumption and Production through a monitoring and evaluation framework developed in 2017 by representatives from across the network. 

This framework tracks the activities of the One Planet network partners against a series of 14 indicators of succcess, to provide a better picture of what the transformation to SCP and the implementation of SDG 12 looks like in the real world.

Read the full Indicators of Success document here.

Additionally, a pilot reporting was conducted in 2016-2017 specifically on target 12.1.1 of the SDGs - the number of countries developing, adopting, or implementing policy instruments aimed at supporting the shift to SCP.

More information on SDG 12 reporting for countries can be found here.

Output-oriented activities

Training for SCP

Training is: a learning activity for any number of participants involving:

  • a setting intended for transferring knowledge and skills that relate to specific competencies that will enable participants to contribute to the shift to SCP;
  • formally designated instructors, lead persons or dedicated networks for peer-to-peer learning; and
  • a defined/documented curriculum, learning objectives and outcomes.

Examples: sponsored seminars, workshops, conferences, on-the-job learning experiences, observational study tours, or distance learning through webinars and online training courses, as well as other events or settings, of any duration, as long as they involve the three elements above.

Participants: only people who have completed the entire training course are counted for this indicator. Organizers should not be counted as attending the training.

Do not report under this activity:

  • The same meeting cannot be reported as both a training and an outreach/communication activity.
  • Meetings, such as consultations, decision making workshops, awareness raising events, that have educational value but do not have a defined curriculum or objectives are not considered to be training but rather fall under the definition of an outreach and communication activity.
  • Outcomes of training related to another activity (e.g., if training has resulted in a change in practices) should be reported under such other activity. 

The full description of Training for SCP can be found here.

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Outreach and Communication for SCP

Outreach and communication activities are: any activity with a communication or outreach purpose, directed to a specific audience, and addressing SCP relevant topics.
Examples: Events, committee meetings, regional/national fora, conferences, consultations, presentations, briefings, press conferences, site visits, public speeches/talks, social media, magazines, newsletters, radio, blogs, brochures, video, infographics, posters, articles/web stories, op-eds, etc.
Objectives of outreach and communication activities: Raising awareness by sharing, collecting and disseminating information which may ultimately lead to policy implementation and behaviour change. 
Do not report under this activity:

  • Activities reported as knowledge products and tools cannot be reported as outreach/communication activities. Outreach and communication activities are different from knowledge and technical tools production, please see the examples listed above for clarification.​

The full description of Outreach and Communication activities for SCP can be found here.

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Production and use of SCP knowledge resources and technical tools

SCP knowledge resources and technical tools are: resources that provide insights, scientific conclusions, frameworks, guidance; or resources that can foster or facilitate decision-making and that are scoped to promote the shift towards SCP, based on scientific research and/or empirical evidence. 

While production of knowledge resources and technical tools is considered an output, the use of the knowledge resources and technical tools is recorded as an outcome. When provided, it helps us identify who, where, and when the knowledge resource and technical tool is being used to implement SDG 12.
Examples: Scientific articles, policy briefs, reports, guidelines, manuals, media products, software, tools and educational materials. May include any format whether digital or physical.
Use of SCP knowledge and technical tools: any usage made of a SCP knowledge or technical tool addressing SCP issues. Number of downloads of a specific resource or tool on the SCP Clearinghouse is calculated under the SCP Clearinghouse. Other quantification of use are left at the discretion of the relevant reporting entities, and can be filled out through the reporting.
Do not report under this activity:

  • An executive summary or annexes which consist of a part of full document should not be counted separately.
  • An activity reported as a knowledge resource or technical tool cannot be reported as an outreach/communication activity, a change in practice, or a high-level commitment. To illustrate, a science report is counted as one knowledge resource, while an associated press article is counted as one outreach and communication activity.

The full description of production and use of SCP knowledge resources and technical tools can be found here.

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Outcome-oriented activities

Policy instruments

Policy instruments: for sustainable consumption and production refer to the national plans and strategies adopted to support the shift to sustainable consumption and production practices, as well as to the means – methodologies, measures or interventions – that are used to achieve the objectives set in such plans and strategies. Such policy instruments are designed and implemented to reduce the environmental impacts of consumption and production patterns, with a view of generating economic and/or social benefits.
Examples: national strategies/action plans, new institutions, laws, regulations, standards, enforcement measures, taxes and tax incentives, grants, preferential loans, sectoral partnerships, codes of conduct, CSR initiatives, etc. 

Entities considered: Entities making progress in developing, adopting, or implementing policy instruments aimed at supporting the shift to SCP can be of different types, e.g. ministry, company, international organization, NGO, etc. and have different geographical scopes (international, national, local).

Policy instrument reporting: policy instruments already reported through previous reporting cycles can only be reported if significant progress has been achieved.

Do not report under this activity:

  • As per definition above, and although they can be linked, a policy instrument is not the same thing as a change in practice, a high-level commitment, a coordination mechanism, a monitoring and reporting mechanism, or a knowledge resource or tool. For instance, monitoring frameworks do not have the status of policy instruments but are rather used to monitor implementation of these. New monitoring or assessment of a policy can be consider as progress along the policy cycle and be reported as such. 

The full description of Policy instruments for SCP can be found here.

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SCP monitoring and reporting

Monitoring and reporting instruments for SCP are: any voluntary or mandatory monitoring and reporting scheme that is being used by a government or organisation to regularly measure and assess performance, results and impacts of defined activities against an agreed set of criteria in support to SCP objectives.
Examples: Various forms from annual sustainability reports published by companies, to certification systems, to full accounting systems used by governments (composed of frameworks of indicators and associated targets, monitoring and reporting guidelines, principles, etc.). 

Instruments considered: a government or organisation should have established a new monitoring and reporting instrument (or amended an existing one) supporting the tracking of progress toward the shift to SCP within the current reporting period.

Do not report under this activity:

  • Monitoring and reporting instruments do not have the status of policy or coordination instruments but are rather used to monitor implementation of these. Hence, although they can be linked, progress reported under this indicator cannot be similar to those reported under policy instruments and coordination mechanisms.

The full description of SCP monitoring and reporting instruments can be found here.

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Education on SCP

Formal education is: “the hierarchically structured, chronologically graded ‘education system’, running from primary school through the university and including, in addition to general academic studies, a variety of specialised programmes and institutions for full-time technical and professional training.”

Formal education considered: National governments integrating (or further integrating) SCP topics in formal education including into (a) national policies, (b) curricula (primary, secondary and tertiary levels including higher education vocational training); and (c) teacher education

Do not report under this activity:

  • Non-formal education, which is defined as “any organised educational activity outside the established formal system – whether operating separately or as an important feature of some broader activity – that is intended to serve identifiable learning clienteles and learning objectives.”, non-formal education to SCP can be reported as training for SCP.
  • Further integration of SCP topics in formal education cannot be reported as changes in practices related to production processes. Countries having made progress on national policies for integration of SCP topics into formal education should be reported under SCP policies.

The full description of Education on SCP can be found here.

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SCP Changes in Practices

A change in practice or production process supporting the shift to SCP: refers to the adoption, deployment, implementation of new practices (systems, technologies, processes), or in a modification, or increase in use of SCP relevant practices into supply chains and their governance. Such changes may take the form of sustainability improvements within chemical, mechanical, physical, biological technologies as well as management and cultural practices.
Examples: the implementation of energy or water saving technologies, changes to increase sustainability in the supply chain, changes to procurement and purchasing processes (such as supplier diversity or share of sustainable products), changes in materials used for construction, zero waste initiatives, increase in recycling/reuse, decreased use of plastics, and/or improvements to infrastructure design. 

Changes may be implemented as a part of a change in processes to meet standards, obtain certifications and eco-labels, or because of new regulations and fiscal instruments, etc. 
Objective of a change in practice: directly results in concrete, tangible and measurable sustainability impacts either environmental, social (e.g. changes in living conditions) or (shared prosperity), or economic (e.g. changes in redistribution of wealth to the advantage of lower social classes, etc.).

Do not report under this activity:

  • In itself, a policy, coordination mechanism or a monitoring and reporting instrument is not considered here as a change in practice. However, the concrete and tangible changes associated to their implementation can constitute changes in practices and production processes subject to reporting under this indicator.

The full description of SCP changes in practices can be found here.

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High-level SCP commitments 

A SCP commitment is: any non-legally binding official high-level expression of support or pledge (e.g. company X commit to reducing its environmental footprint by Y by 2050), which is relevant, at least in part, to SCP. They constitute an official account of facts, views, intentions, and/or plans further engaging a stakeholder in SCP, communicated through formal announcement in written or orally.
Examples: official commitments, declarations, statements, pledges as well as international decisions, recommendations or resolutions, but are not limited to these.
Level of commitments considered: This indicator only considers commitments that are taken at the highest level of the concerned government or organisation (e.g. ministerial level, CEO level).

Types of commitments considered: Commitments are not legally binding and can fall under the responsibility of different types of organisation (ministry, company, international organisation, NGO, etc.) and apply to different scopes (international, national, local, sectoral, etc.).

Commitment reporting:

  • Only commitments which have been issued during the current reporting period and which relate to something new (not already announced) can be reported here.
  • One commitment is considered as an official expression of support or pledge from one government or organisation. If one same commitment is made by a number of organisations (e.g. an international declaration), the commitment made by each and every organisation should be counted as one. For instance an international resolution being signed by 20 governments should be reported as 20 commitments.

Do not report under this activity:

  • Commitments that are part of elements monitored under other types of activities, such as policy instruments, cannot be reported as a high-level commitment here.

The full description of high-level SCP commitments can be found here.

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Institutional arrangements for SCP

An inter-sectoral and/or multi-stakeholder mechanism for coordination on SCP is:  An assembly composed of governmental and/or non-governmental entities with various mandates and sectors of interventions, interacting on a regular basis, established with the objective of coordinating action on SCP in a coherent and sustained manner.
Examples: These mechanisms can be established at various scales, e.g. regional, national or sub-national, at cross-cutting or sectoral level. For instance, in the governmental context, those mechanisms can take the form of inter-ministerial committees on SCP or national multi-stakeholder roundtables. At the regional level, existing Regional Roundtables on SCP could also count as such mechanisms.
Mechanism reporting: Each coordination mechanism should be reported separately together with its associated annual budget if available, and number of participating organisations.
Do not report under this activity:

  • Stand alone outreach or communication meetings do not fall under the definition of a coordination mechanism and cannot be reported here. They can be reported as outreach/communication activities. There are also differences between a coordination mechanism, a monitoring and reporting instrument and a policy as per their respective definitions.

The full description of Coordination mechanisms on SCP can be found here.

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Reporting your impacts

When reporting on outcome-oriented activities, there is also an opportunity to include the impact on strategic issues of: resource efficiency and decoupling economic growth from environmental degradation; creating deccent jobs; and contributing to poverty eradication and shared prosperity.

You can report on expected impacts (targets) or achieved impacts such as the following examples:

Resource Efficiency

Material use efficiency
- XX% of materials are recycled or remanufactured;
- The average material savings reached XX% of the related material input;
- Eco-efficient product design enabled a XX% reduction in resource consumption during product use. 

Waste reduction 
- Recycling rate of XX%, equal to XX tons of material recovered for recycling. 

Water use efficiency
- XX% reduction in water use, equivalent to XX cubic metres (m3) annually. 

Energy use efficiency
- XX% of energy savings, this represents XX Megajoules (MJ) annually;
- XX % of the total energy consumption comes from renewable sources, this represents XX Megajoules (MJ) annually. 

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Environmental Impact

GHG emissions reduction
- XX% reduction in GHG emissions, this amounts to XX tonnes of CO2 equivalents. 

Reduction of air, soil and water pollutants
- XX% decrease in SLCP/fine particulate matter emissions from XX amount. 

Biodiversity conservation and sustainable land-use
- XX% of area under protection/certification schemes;
- XX% of important sites for terrestrial and freshwater biodiversity that are covered by protected areas.  

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Human Well-Being

- Female to male labour force participation rate distribution;
- % of entrepreneurs (MSMEs) that are women;
- Increase in the proportion of women in managerial positions from XX amount;
- % of women employed in green jobs. 

Decent work
- XX% increase in the average monthly earnings of female and male employees from XX amount;
- XX% decrease in the unemployment rate from XX amount. 

- Increased coverage of essential health services from XX amount;
- Decrease in mortality rate attributed to household and ambient air pollution from XX amount;
- Decrease in mortality rate attributed to unsafe water, unsafe sanitation and lack of hygiene from XX amount.

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Next steps

How to report your progress on SDG 12

Why report your progress on SDG 12

See the reporting results from 2018


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