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Measuring Sustainable Lifestyles and Sustainability

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Measuring Sustainable Lifestyles and Sustainability Sylvia Karlsson and Arthur Dahl International Environment Forum Indicators No system can be managed without ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Measuring Sustainable Lifestyles and Sustainability


1
Measuring Sustainable Lifestyles and
Sustainability
  • Sylvia Karlsson and Arthur Dahl
  • International Environment Forum

2
Indicators
  •  No system can be managed without information
  • Dashboards
  • Bank statements
  • Achieving sustainability also requires
    information
  • Indicators are numbers/symbols that tell
    something about the system

3
Use of indicators
  • Information for decision-making
  • Public information
  • Early warning, vulnerability
  • Indicators can provide guidance for adaptive
    management, which is necessary when we do not
    fully understand complex systems.

4
Types of indicators
  • Statistics (GNP, unemployment rate)
  • Materials flows
  • Ecological footprints
  • Scientific data (CO2 concentration)
  • Maps, GIS
  • Other types of information

5
Indicators of sustainable development
  • Rio Earth Summit adopted Agenda 21
  • UNDP Human Development Index
  • Commission on Sustainable Development, Programme
    of Work on Indicators
  • SCOPE project on Indicators of Sustainability
  • Menu of 134 indicators, DSIR framework
  • Revised set of 52 core indicators
  • SCOPE Assessment of Sustainability Indicators

6
NGO Initiatives
  • Environmental Sustainability Index
  • Ecological Footprint
  • WWF Living Planet Index
  • IUCN Wealth of Nations
  • BIC Spiritually Based Indicators for Development

7
Local Indicators
  • Sustainable Seattle
  • Fraser Valley, BC, Canada
  • Local Agenda 21 in many communities

8
Status of indicator development
  • Challenge of measuring sustainability and
    sustainable development
  • Temporal and spatial scales
  • Planetary limits
  • Vulnerability and resilience
  • Irreversibility
  • Reference values, baselines, targets
  • Data drivenness

9
Defining Development
  • Other dimensions than material
  • Cultural diversity
  • Global consciousness
  • Equality of men and women
  • Participation in science/knowledge

10
Process of indicator development
  • Challenges of developing indicators through
    processes that ensure their universal
    applicability
  • Comparing countries
  • Diversity of development goals
  • Equity
  • Democracy

11
Individual indicators
  • There are indicators that individuals, families
    and communities can use to measure the
    sustainability of their lifestyles.
  • More should be done to help each person develop
    and use such indicators to manage their own
    well-being and sustainability.
  • Such indicators can also contribute substantially
    to education for sustainable development.

12
Examples of individual indicators
  • Water consumption, use of polluting materials
    (detergent, cleaners, toxics)
  • Energy Electricity/gas consumption, heating
    bills, CO2 budget
  • Transport automobile mileage, public transport
    use, bicycle use, walking
  • Food purchases of fast food,organic, fair trade
    weight gain number of meatless meals

13
Examples 2
  • Clothing number of shirts, dresses, shoes
    expenditures on clothes
  • Housing number of rooms per person, cost
  • Technology number of electronic devices
    bought/discarded
  • Contact with nature, animals (hrs/week)
  • Travel for recreation, tourism (km)
  • Experiences of beauty, cultural diversity

14
Examples 3
  • Community participation in activities
  • Solidarity gifts to charity, development
  • Altruism volunteer service
  • Spirituality daily prayer

15
Action
  • Make up your own sustainability indicator profile
  • Compare your progress yearly
  • In school, develop a class indicator profile
    (choose, measure, analyze)
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