International initiatives

Some three quarters of environmental impacts that are caused by final demand in Switzerland occur abroad due to imported goods and commodities. Therefore, it is important to consider our impact on the environment beyond our borders. The FOEN participates in international initiatives for the promotion of a green and resource-conserving economy and shares its experience with other national programmes. These activities reflect not only Switzerland's ecological responsibility, but also its economic and social interests.

International economic policies and the environment

The way in which natural resources are produced, distributed and consumed is the number one cause behind the crises of global warming, biodiversity loss and pollution. Fundamental change is needed to tackle these challenges. Two thirds of the environmental impact of Swiss consumption is generated abroad by imported products and raw materials. Switzerland is involved in international efforts to promote sustainable resource management. These activities reflect Switzerland's ecological responsibility and serve its economic and social interests.

Sustainable raw materials and infrastructure

Delivering on the Sustainable Development Goals and implementing the Paris Agreement and major infrastructure projects require large quantities of raw materials, including minerals. However, the extraction of these materials generates significant environmental impacts, such as biodiversity loss, mine waste (tailings), pollution of air and water and soil contamination. Switzerland works at an international level to reduce the environmental impacts associated with mineral raw materials and to promote sustainable infrastructure.

Plastic pollution

A significant amount of environmental impact caused by plastics arises from primary production, which largely takes place abroad. This means that global problems can only be solved through joint action, which is why the FOEN also advocates the sustainable use of plastics at international level and participates in international bodies.

Last modification 27.06.2023

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