Sustainable Development Goals - 17 Goals to Transform our World

Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns

Indicator 12.2.1: Material footprint, material footprint per capita, and material footprint per GDP

Material footprint, material footprint per capita, and material footprint per GDP

This table provides metadata for the actual indicator available from US statistics closest to the corresponding global SDG indicator. Please note that even when the global SDG indicator is fully available from US statistics, this table should be consulted for information on national methodology and other US-specific metadata information.

Actual indicator available
Actual indicator available - description
Date of national source publication
Method of computation Material footprint of consumption reports the amount of primary materials required to serve final demand of a country and can be interpreted as an indicator for the material standard of living/level of capitalization of an economy. Per-capita MF describes the average material use for final demand. DMC and MF need to be looked at in combination as they cover the two aspects of the economy, production and consumption. The DMC reports the actual amount of material in an economy, MF the virtual amount required across the whole supply chain to service final demand. A country can, for instance have a very high DMC because it has a large primary production sector for export or a very low DMC because it has outsourced most of the material intensive industrial processes to other countries. The material footprint corrects for both phenomena.
Scheduled update by national source
U.S. method of computation
Comments and limitations
Date metadata updated
Disaggregation geography
Unit of measurement
Disaggregation categories
International and national references
Time period
Scheduled update by SDG team

This table provides information on metadata for SDG indicators as defined by the UN Statistical Commission. Complete global metadata is provided by the UN Statistics Division.

Indicator name Material footprint, material footprint per capita, and material footprint per GDP
Target name By 2030, achieve the sustainable management and efficient use of natural resources.
Global indicator description Material footprint (MF) is the attribution of global material extraction to domestic final demand of a country. It is calculated as raw material equivalent of imports (RMEIM) plus domestic extraction (DE) minus raw material equivalents of exports (RMEEX). For the attribution of the primary material needs of final demand a global, multi-regional input-output (MRIO) framework is employed. The attribution method based on I-O analytical tools is described in detail in Wiedmann et al. 2015. It is based on the EORA MRIO framework developed by the University of Sydney, Australia (Lenzen et al. 2013) which is an internationally well-established and the most detailed and reliable MRIO framework available to date.
UN designated tier 3
UN custodial agency UNEP (Partnering Agencies: OECD)
Link to UN metadata Link opens in a new window
Agency Staff Name
Agency Survey Dataset
Link to data source

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