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Since the mid-1990s, the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) have collaborated to foster the global uptake of Resource Efficient and Cleaner Production (RECP). Under the joint flagship RECP Programme, sponsored primarily by the Government of Switzerland, UNIDO and UNEP have responded to countries’ growing demand for help with the delivery of RECP services to industries by assisting organizations — especially small and medium-sized enterprises, governments, civil society, research institutions and related stakeholders — in over 60 developing and transition economies.

In practical terms, RECP entails the continuous application of preventive environmental strategies to processes, products and services in order to increase efficiency and reduce risks to humans and the environment. RECP addresses the three sustainability dimensions individually and synergistically: a) heightened economic performance through improved productive use of resources, b) environmental protection by conserving resources and minimizing industry’s impact on the natural environment, and c) social enhancement by providing jobs and protecting the wellbeing of workers and local communities.

Contribution to the Sustainable Development Goals