The report, backed by research from the International Resource Panel, showed that efficient use of the world’s natural resources will mean big money for the next generation, who could see the €2 trillion by 2050.
A programme in the UK is living proof of this economic phenomenon, the report said. Between 2005 and 2010 the scheme in question recycled seven million tonnes of waste destined for landfill sites. Doing so reduced business costs by almost €180 million and stopped 6 million tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from polluting the air.
A more sustainable use of materials and energy would also keep global warming below 2 degrees Celsius, in line with the UN Paris Agreement, the report added.
“This is an environmental win-win,” said Erik Solheim, head of UN Environment, about the report findings.