By: Heinz Leuenberger, Director, Environmental Management Branch, UNIDO
The UNIDO-UNEP Green Industry Platform, launched at the UN Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20) in June 2012, has so far attracted nearly 200 high-level government, business and civil society representatives to sign its “Statement of Support”, promoting a cleaner and greener model of global industrial production and development.
The global enthusiasm towards the Platform’s message and objectives has been in large part due to a concerted momentum- and awareness-building campaign, which saw international events promoting the Green Industry concept take place in Quito, Vienna, New York, Paris, Geneva, San Jose, Montreux, Seoul, Nairobi, London, Guangzhou, Brussels and Lima. Additionally, the adoption of the renewed Lima Declaration on Inclusive and Sustainable Industrial Development (ISID) by UNIDO’s member states, as well as the creation of the Partnership for Action on Green Economy (PAGE) led by UNEP, have provided stakeholders with focused international frameworks to support the implementation of Green Industry policies and practices.
In 2014, UNIDO and UNEP will seek to continue the global policy dialogue on Green Industry, while steadily building capacity at all levels and implementing an increasing number of Green Industry projects on the ground. Against this background, the Platform’s activities will center around fostering concrete individual and partnership activities to help members realize their commitments in the “Statement of Support”.
The Platform’s work will include the issuance of guidance reports on greening the food and beverages and textile value chains, building capacity through Green Industry training courses, developing a number of national Green Industry strategies, and establishing baselines and determining indicators to measure enterprise- and sector-level progress towards Green Industry.
In an example of a successful partnership activity, Green Industry Platform member DNV Business Assurance is working with UNIDO to implement joint projects in the field of water footprint measurement and the promotion of water management best practices.
An envisaged output of the partnership will be the creation of a self-assessment tool to assist SMEs in developing countries evaluate their water footprint in restricted stages of a product life cycle, specifically the so-called ‘cradle-to-gate’ assessment, leading from agricultural production through processing and production up to the factory gate, before being transported to the consumer.
The tool will allow SMEs to measure and mitigate the water footprints of their products and services, while helping larger buyer companies make their supply chains more sustainable. As such, it will also help other Platform members realize their objective of improving their environmental performance.
The partnership with DNV Business Assurance offers an illustrative example of how a multi-stakeholder partnership framework can create tangible value and progress towards a set of objectives shared across multiple boundaries. Recently-elected UNIDO Director General, Li Yong, has stated that he will pursue the Platform’s objectives with renewed momentum and invites the heads of businesses all over the world to work together with UNIDO, UNEP and key international stakeholders to realize a more sustainable model of industrial production.
For further information, please visit the Green Industry Platform’s official website at www.greenindustryplatform.org, or contact the Platform secretariat at firstname.lastname@example.org.