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Shaping Nature-Friendly Consumption Recommendations for selected Products to Protect Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services Worldwide

From coffee to soy and timber, consumers in the Global North use resources grown or extracted in parts of the world where biodiversity is in drastic decline. The Global South, where the most biodiverse ecosystems are located and where much of the world's raw materials come from, is mostly affected. Unsustainable consumption patterns in the Global North thus have a direct link to the destruction of ecosystems in the Global South.

For many years, sustainable consumption that is socially and environmentally responsible has therefore been on the international political agenda. However, the political momentum has so far been too slow to stop the global destruction of nature. A shift towards more environmentally friendly and sufficiency-oriented consumption patterns in the Global North is needed.

The project “Making Consumption Eco-Friedly” pursues two goals: Firstly, to develop a scientific information base that shows which consumption decisions affect global hotspots of biodiversity loss and ecosystem services and how. Secondly, instruments and recommendations for action are to be developed with the close involvement of international experts and political decision-makers in order to promote nature-friendly consumption.

With the recommendations for action, the project addresses political actors at national and EU level. Important political processes accompanied by the project are the further development of the EU Regulation on deforestation-free products. It aims to support the shift in consumption, among other things by establishing binding due diligence requirements for companies that import products from rainforest-threatened areas such as soy or palm oil into the EU.

Furthermore, the implementation of the goals of the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) is to be supported. The CBD intends to safeguard biological diversity globally. To this end, it defines key targets and indicators for the conservation of biodiversity.

IÖW Project Team