Shaping Wales’ Future: Wales’s Global Footprint and National Milestones Consultation

The Society was invited last autumn to comment on a set of proposed national indicators and milestones to ‘measure our nation’s progress’.

The Welsh Government explained the principles behind the survey as follows:

To help us to understand Wales’ future we already have national well-being indicators, and we will set national milestones to provide a mechanism for monitoring national progress towards the seven well-being goals. In addition, a Future Trends Report will identify the key social, economic, environmental, and cultural trends that could affect Wales in the future, as well as some of the factors that could influence the direction of those trends.

Shaping Wales’ Future: Using National Indicators and Milestones to measure our Nation’s progress (

Our response to the survey can be seen here.

We supported the Welsh Government’s recommendation to rename the ecological measure as ‘Global Footprint’ (rather than Ecological Footprint) as a more accurate description of patterns of consumption in all its forms. It allows for a broader interpretation that includes One Health considerations and is focused on responsible resource consumption.

We also recommended that more consideration should be given to the role of sustainable agriculture, and that Wales should adopt the existing Net-Zero greenhouse gas emissions target as a national milestone. We advised that careful consideration should be given to the unintended consequences of some net-zero policies, such as carbon offset afforestation on rural Welsh-language heartland communities.