The advent of the steam engine and the industrial revolution led to an unprecedented competing interest within nations, where more production meant more welfare. It is no surprise that we are living in an era of consumerism where more is less. Our existing development paradigm faces the threats of land degradation, water scarcity, food insecurity, and economic and environmental cost. Moreover, our unsustainable practices where we want more and more – such as the concept of consumerism, has altered the face of the earth and the fabric of our lives. Instead of being towards the year-end, this year, the World Offshoot day fell on August 22, 2020. This day is marked by that point in a particular year when humanity’s demand of natural resources exceeds what can be generated by earth. In our country, the CPEC initiative has opened new doors for enhancement of industrial activities – however this has obviously been coupled with a burden on natural resources, such as the increased usage of energy. Even though we are diversifying into renewable sources of energy, our reliance on conventional means of producing energy, through thermal modes such as coal ford power stations has not been eradicated. The Pakistan Economic Survey 2019-20 reported that for the case of electricity generation – the share from renewable sources of energy was only 2.4 percent. Amidst all these concerns, it is prudent to wonder whether Pakistan is set on a trajectory to achieve the twelfth Sustainable Development Goal: ‘Responsible Consumption and Production’. Target 12.2 aims to achieve the sustainable management and efficient use of natural resources by 2030. In this regard, indicator 12.2.1 deals with the material footprint – which is defined by the United Nations Environment Program as ‘the attribution of global material extraction to domestic final demand of a country’. According to the Statistical Yearbook for Asia and the Pacific 2017 – the volume of material footprint (total) was 628.6 million tons whereas the material footprint per capita amounted to 3.0 tons per capita for Pakistan, less than the regional average of Asia-Pacific which is 10.5 tons per capita. Indicator 12.2.2 deals with domestic material consumption. The UN Statistics Division reported that in 2017, Pakistan’s domestic material consumption (DMC) which is the ‘total amount of materials used by an economy to meet the demand of goods services from within and outside a country’s per capita was 4.45 tonnes per person. The same number stands at 28.79 tonnes for Canada and 5.53 tonnes per capita for India. The data for Pakistan could well be under reported as a disproportionate part of the economy operates within the informal sector. According to the Worldwide Fund, in the current year, our country has the second highest deforestation rate in Asia with only 5.7 percent of land being under forest area. Urbanization exerts such pressures on existing land because of rising population But sustainability is not just in terms of material consumption – to get a firm grasp of the concept, we must look at agriculture as well. Ideally, in strictly neo-Classical terms, the concept of sustainability calls for maximizing the yield with an efficient usage of inputs – however the practices of Pakistan do not fare well in this aspect. Consider agriculture – the Green Revolution of the 1960s accompanied an extensive buildup of water infrastructure. Then came the indiscriminate application of seeds, fertilizers and pesticides – which has degraded the quality of our fertile lands. All this results in an inefficient allocation of resources. This is exacerbated by the prevailing information asymmetry – where farmers in Pakistan do not always get the requisite information at the right time. While the quality of seeds and the application of fertilizers is very important, the timing of the intervention is perhaps the most crucial ingredient. It is not possible for a farmer to go out and research. In this context, the extension workers of the agriculture department are so useful and important to reach out to the farmers with the specific information. We have the Punjab government experimenting with Chinese seeds, however, their yield is low – because they are not suited to our climate. Hence, it would be apt to say that our research efforts should be up-scaled as there is a dearth of scientific knowledge creation which would lead to modernization of agriculture in the specific context of our country. Apart from this, transportation issues and a lack of storage spaces adds to the wastage of produce. Similarly, our water issues stem from glacial recession, upstream water diversions, sedimentation of dams and rivers, altered rainfall patterns, and our inefficient usage. Let us now add the additional pressure that agriculture in Pakistan is subjected to – urbanization. We have cut down our forests to pave the way for urbanization. Other than this, the wood demand surge has been fueled by the public as the demand for furniture and the use of wood for cooking purposes has been an added factor in the cutting down of trees. Development projects do not always consider the plethora of prevailing environmental and health concerns. Our government’s advocacy of furniture exports contradicts the emphasis on tree plantation schemes – showing a remarkable dichotomy. According to the Worldwide Fund, in the current year, our country has the second highest deforestation rate in Asia with only 5.7 percent of land being under forest area. Urbanization exerts such pressures on existing land because of rising population. To deal with the ballooning population, housing schemes are necessary – however the quality of these different schemes is another issue. It is an open secret that much of the potential agricultural land has been relinquished to these schemes. From areas where urban structures have replaced greenery, rainwater does not seep to the ground and refill the aquifer, as there is more drainage than the groundwater’s capacity to seep rainwater. In 2016, a report titled ‘Sustaining Growth: Cleaner Production in Pakistan’ reported that for industrial usage – on site groundwater pumping was employed in 90 percent of the cases of textile processing, 61 percent in sugar, and 98 percent in the case of pulp and paper. NEPRA’s State of the Energy Report 2020 highlighted the fact that the domestic sector is the largest consumer of electricity. The same report also stated that the circular debt has crossed Rs 2 trillion. We can learn from international implementation of policies on demand side management (DSM) or energy demand management, such as done in Canada or the USA, for lesser consumption of electricity. In the case of our country, the legislations and actions taken in this regard have yet to achieve optimal results, such as the National Energy Efficiency and Conservation Act of 2016. Dr. Izza Aftab is the chairperson of the Economics Department at Information Technology University, Lahore. She is also the Director of the SDG Tech Lab and the Program Director of Safer Society for Children. She has a PhD in Economics from The New School University (NY, USA) and is a Fulbrighter. She tweets @izzaaftab. Noor Ul Islam is currently working as a Research Associate at the SDG Tech Lab established in collaboration with Information Technology University, Lahore, UNDP and UNFPA. She is a post-graduate in Economics from Lahore University of Management Sciences. She tweets @Noor_Ul_Islam20.