Sustainable Lifestyles

We make millions of decisions in our lives. What to eat? Where to live? How to get around? What to wear? What to do for fun? No matter the choices -the lifestyles we live meet our needs, determine our quality of life AND have a profound impact on the planet and the people around us. The sheer amount of stuff people use in many parts of the world in everyday life has shot up, while in others, many still struggle to meet basic needs. As populations grow, the middle class expands and incomes rise, there will be a rise in consumption, resource constraints and environmental impacts. We need to find a way to live well and live light.

Change is underway. The term ‘sustainable lifestyles’ increasingly appears in the media and is anchored in the Sustainable Development Goals. We hear about climate change, carbon foot-printing, recycling, bicycle lanes, organic foods and food waste initiatives. But what makes up sustainable lifestyles and how can they be promoted? What about the growing number of people who are not consuming enough to survive? We know we need to consume differently and consume sustainably. There is no one definition because they vary with our individual circumstances, but the core lifestyle domains (food, mobility, housing and leisure) must be addressed holistically. Equally important, are the intangible elements of belonging, traditions, and the quality of life. All this will require raising awareness on the sustainability impacts of lifestyles and influencing individual behavior change and, hence, new approaches and partnerships.

1/ Changing lifestyles

Chair: Karolina Skog, Minister for the Environment of Sweden

Speakers: Aisha Al Abdooli, Chief Innovation Officer and Director of Green Development, Ministry of Climate Change and Environment of the United Arab Emirates (tbc); Virginie Helias; Vice President, Global Sustainability, Proctor & Gamble; Kartikeya Sarabhai, Founder and Director at Centre for Environment Education, India; Oumaima Mhijir, Director, AMAL Women's Training Center and Maroccan Restaurant, Morocco


2/ Eat well, live well

Chair: Norbert Kurilla, State Secretary, Ministry of Environment of Slovak Republic

Speakers: Lucy Muchoki, CEO, Pan African Agribusiness and Agroindustry Consortium; Alexander Müller, Study lead, The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity Agriculture and Food; Natascha Kooiman, Founder, Smaackmakers, FoodQuake, 10YFP Sustainable Food Systems Programme MAC member; Edda Fernández Luiselli, Director General, Primary Sector and Renewable Natural Resources, Ministry of Environmental and Natural Resources, Mexico, Co-Chair of the Board of the 10 Year Framework of Programmes


3/ Low carbon sustainable lifestyles in the community context: infrastructure, mobility and housing

Chair: Kimmo Kalevi Tiilikainen, Minister of Agriculture and the Environment of Finland

Speakers: Leyla Acaroglu, Founder, chief disrupter and creative director at UnSchool of Disruptive Design, 2016 Champion of the Earth; Lena Pripp-Kovac, Sustainability Manager of Range and Supply, IKEA; Tarek Keskes, Deputy team leader, EDMITA project: "Sustainable energy in the provinces of Midelt and Tata", GIZ/GFA Consulting Group; Operations project officer, UN SDSN Youth; Torben Gleesborg, Director of Technical and Environmental Administration, City of Copenhagen