Endorse the Call for “Natural Resource Accounting” in Post-2015 Development

November 9, 2014 • Daily Email Recap

A Joint Statement

See here to endorse: http://swinitiative.com/endorse/

Calling for a SDG target that would incorporate “natural resource accounting” into country-level plans for achieving Sustainable Consumption and Production (SCP).

Sustained and inclusive economic development requires water, energy, metals, and mineral resources. Natural resources and the preservation of bio-capacity are foundations for delivering human wellbeing and dignity.  Food security can only be achieved with adequate water, topsoil, and arable land.  Human health depends upon sanitary conditions and access to safe drinking water.

The natural resources and services that underpin human development are assets. Just as governments need financial balance sheets and budgets to manage their fiscal affairs they also need natural resource balance sheets and budgets to manage their physical resources and preserve their bio-capacity.  Just as countries must be wary of incurring unsustainable budget deficits, they must also be concerned about ecological deficits and the depletion of scarce resources.

The quest for sustainabledevelopment should include national inventories of natural resources and a rigorous assessment of bio-capacity.  Sustainable consumption and production is at the heart of sustainability.  Developed and developing nations alike must assess their natural material balance sheets in order to be able to identify the best and most sustainable development pathways. Long-term, sustained poverty eradication demands that countries anticipate and guard against problems arising from resource scarcity or environmental degradation.

As part of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) all countries are encouraged to commit to elaborating natural resource balance sheets, as a tool that can guide public policy decisions.  To that end, the SDGs should establish the following universal target:

Natural Resource Accounting:  All nations should conduct natural resource sufficiency evaluations at the country level, produce annual material resource “balance sheets,” and integrate this information into their national plans for achieving sustainable production and consumption.  


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