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Toward a Sustainable Society

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Title: Toward a Sustainable Society


1
Chapter 14
  • Toward a Sustainable Society

2
Starting Quote
It took Britain half the resources of the planet
to achieve its prosperity how many planets will
a country like India require....?
Mahatma Gandhi when asked if, after
independence, India would attain British
standards of living
3
Introduction
  • Every human being is now subjected to contact
    with dangerous chemicals, from the moment of
    conception until death.
  • Residues of chemicals linger in soil to which
    they have been applied a dozen years before.
  • Chemicals occur in the mothers milk, and
    probably in the tissues of the unborn child

4
Defining the Problem
  • To sustain is to support without collapse
  • Sustenance is that which supports life
  • Biodiversity

5
What Needs to be Preserved?
  • big controversy and disagreement within society
  • there are main two views

6
Natural Resources Protection
  • need to stop turning natural systems to human
    systems
  • realize that nature and culture are, in fact, not
    merely "two sides of the same coin
  • engage in non-linear and cyclical modes of
    thinking about nature, culture, and landscape

7
How to Judge ?
Environmental Health
  • Biodiversity
  • Flexibility
  • Stability
  • Resilience

8
Why Are We Not Currently Sustainable?
  • Resource scarcity
  • Environmental problems
  • Poverty and Third World
  • Conflict between nations
  • Falling standards
  • Riddled economic System
  • Lack of technology
  • Mass consumption
  • Uneven wealth
  • Lack of public awareness
  • Uncertainties

9
How We Got Here?
  • Environmental disconnection
  • Social stratification
  • Standard of living
  • Population and technology growth
  • Momentum, lag and uncertainty

10
History
  • The Stockholm Conference (1972)
  • The World Conservation Strategy (1980)
  • A Programme for Survival (1980)
  • The UN World Charter for Nature (1982)
  • The IUCN Ottawa Conference on Environment and
    Development (1986)
  • Earth Summit (1992)
  • Agenda 21
  • Rio Declaration on Earth and Environment (1992)

11
Agenda 21 Themes
  • The Prospering World (revitalizing growth with
    sustainability)
  • The Just World (sustainable living)
  • The Habitable World (human settlement)
  • The Fertile World (efficient resource use)
  • The Shared World (global and regional resources)
  • The Clean World (managing chemicals and waste)
  • The Peoples World (people participation and
    responsibility

12
The Earth Summit
  • United Nations Conference on Environment and
    Development
  • June 13, 1992 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
  • Over 30,000 participants and over 118 heads of
    state
  • Sustainable development
  • Five major documents

13
The Earth Summit Successes
  • Public awareness
  • Interest from private industry
  • Slight improvements of problems addressed at the
    conference
  • Foundation of international cooperation

14
The Earth Summit Failures
  • International funding
  • National commitment
  • Solid leadership

15
World Summit for Social Development
  • held in Copenhagen in March 1995
  • people are at the center of our concerns for
    sustainable development
  • everyone is entitled to a healthy and productive
    life, in harmony with the environment
  • full participation of women, and equality and
    equity between women and men

16
Types of Sustainability Definitions
  • Strong Definitions
  • limited or uncertain possibility of substituting
    technology and human ingenuity for natural
    resources and ecological services
  • Weak Definitions
  • assume that efficiency in use of resources, i.e.
    the substitution of ingenuity for resources, will
    continue

17
Jargon of Words!
  • Sustainable
  • most commonly refers to ecological sustainability
  • Slowly, terms like social, economic, community
    and cultural sustainability, came into use all
    should be included, when we talk about
    sustainable development

18
Sustainability Components
  • Three basic components
  • environment
  • equity
  • futuristic goals

19
Definitions of Sustainability
  • Brundtland Commission (UNWCED)
  • Meets the needs of the present without
    compromising the ability of future generations to
    meet their own needs
  • Robert Gilman, President of Context Institute
  • Ability of a society, ecosystem, or any such
    ongoing system to continue functioning into the
    indefinite future without being forced into
    decline through exhaustion... of key resources

20
Sustainability
  • Safe
  • Universally accepted
  • Stable
  • Technology that benefits all
  • Anti-pollution
  • Improves quality of life
  • Non-toxic
  • Awareness
  • Beautiful
  • Indigenous knowledge
  • Least-cost production
  • Income
  • Total quality
  • Youth

21
Sustainable Development
SD
  • Sustainable development is development that meets
    the needs of the present without compromising the
    ability of future generations to meet their own
    needs

22
Sustainable Development
SD
  • contains within it two key concepts
  • the concept of "needs," in particular the
    essential needs of the world's poor, to which
    overriding priority should be given
  • and the idea of limitations imposed by the state
    of technology and social organization on the
    environment's ability to meet present and future
    needs

23
Elements of Sustainability
SD
  • Sustain
  • maintain supply with necessities or nourishment
    support
  • Develop
  • expand or realize the potentialities of bringing
    society gradually to a fuller, greater state

24
Sustainable Development Components
SD
  • Economic sustainability
  • generating maximum flow of economic welfare.
  • Social sustainability
  • people oriented
  • Environmental sustainability
  • refers to the preservation, the resilience and
    the adaptation of physical and biological
    systems. (Cedric Pugh, Sustainability, the
    Environment and Urbanization, 1996)

25
Ecological Concept of Sustainability
  • Stability
  • Resilience
  • Flexibility
  • Concept of resilience is what characterizes an
    ecological approach to sustainability

26
Economic Concept of Sustainability
  • Hartwicks cake eating model
  • a finite ecosystem cannot provide infinite
    resources

27
Sustainability Means
  • Integrated decision making process
  • Better research and information
  • Democratic values
  • Community participation
  • Collaboration
  • Equity, justice, and shared progress
  • Obligations to future generations
  • Leadership in all sectors far beyond compliance
  • Long-term solutions

28
Sustainability Does NOT Mean
  • Justification for business as usual
  • Growth at all costs
  • Heavier command and control systems
  • All things to all people
  • Static or declining economy
  • Quick fixes and ad hoc solutions

29
Sustainability Why Has It Failed?
  • lack of sense of urgency and commitment
  • it has been thought as a oversight concept,
    rather than understanding its long term philosophy

30
Sustainability Hurdles
  • Level of consumption
  • Wealthy people
  • Third world
  • Lack of public awareness
  • lack of knowledge
  • magnitude and number of uncertainties

31
Objectives of Sustainable Development
SD
  • Reviving growth
  • Changing the quality of growth
  • Meeting essential needs for jobs, food, energy,
    water and sanitation
  • Conserving and enhancing the resource base
  • Reorienting technology and managing risk
  • Merging environment and economics in
    decision-making

32
Achieving Sustainable Development
SD
  • Just wilderness preservation or pollution
    prevention alone is not enough
  • ecological, social, economical, and political
    issues
  • Must combine poverty and gender issues with
    institutional organization and decision making.

33
Sustainable Development Framework
SD
  • Incorporate environmental concerns in
    development planning and policy formulations
  • introduction of space into the framework
  • includes four strategic functions of
  • assessment
  • research and analysis
  • planning and policies
  • support

See Book for details
34
Principles of Strategy Making
SD
  • Integrative approach
  • Focus on the issues
  • Base on goals
  • Workable within policy processes
  • Consensus building
  • Action oriented
  • Capacity enhancing

35
Sustainability Applicability
  • Land
  • Water
  • Air
  • Housing
  • Energy

36
Sustainability Applicability Land
  • major resource for agriculture, environment,
    society, etc
  • diversion of land to other uses
  • leads to soil erosion, reduction in production,
    fertility, etc.
  • solution
  • reversion of land for wildlife habitats,
    production of livestock, etc.

37
Sustainability Applicability Water
  • earth is 80 water
  • only small fraction is usable
  • Contaminated through
  • seepage
  • indiscriminate pumping
  • direct discharge, etc.
  • Solution
  • greater scrutiny of water use
  • reduce pollution

38
Sustainability Applicability Air
  • Considered a free resource
  • greatly misused
  • Pollution
  • industries
  • power-plants, motor vehicles, etc.
  • Solution
  • diversion of more land to be under forest cover
  • other air pollution reducing methods

39
Sustainability ApplicabilityHousing
  • increase in population leads to increased demand
    on land for housing purposes
  • design, renovate, construct, operate and
    demolish in an environmentally sound and
    energy-efficient manner
  • increase natural lighting
  • provide easy public transportation access

40
Sustainability Applicability Energy
  • energy will probably be the most important
    subject of the next decade
  • everyday choices have a great bearing on
    electricity demand
  • conservation is the best tool
  • energy conserved is energy produced
  • promote sustainable energy choices
  • renewable energy sources

41
Sustainability Indicators
  • "...trying to run a complex society on a single
    indicator like the Gross National Product is
    literally like trying to fly a 747 with only one
    gauge on the instrument panel ... imagine if your
    doctor, when giving you a checkup, did no more
    than check your blood pressure."

  • Hazel Henderson

  • Paradigms of Progress

42
Sustainability Indicators (cont.)
  • Indicators should be designed to provide
    information for understanding and enhancing the
    relationships between economic, energy use,
    environmental, and social elements inherent in
    long-term sustainability

43
Sustainability Indicators Role
  • to make complex systems understandable or
    perceptible
  • Economy
  • Income
  • Business
  • Training
  • Human Development/Quality of Life

44
Sustainability Indicators
  • Environment
  • Air
  • Water
  • Land
  • Resource Use
  • Energy
  • Hazardous Materials
  • Water
  • Society/Culture
  • Abuse
  • Diversity
  • Volunteerism

45
Sustainability Ongoing Efforts
  • Project XL
  • USEPA
  • regulatory flexibility
  • The Nature Conservancy and Georgia-Pacific Corp
  • Green Transportation

46
PCSD
  • President's Council on Sustainable Development
  • established by President Clinton on June 29, 1993
    by Executive Order 12852
  • adopted Brundtand Commission definition
  • 25 members
  • partnership between government, industry and
    environmental, labor and civil rights
    organizations

47
PCSD Mission
  • to develop and recommend to the President a
    national sustainable development action strategy
    that will foster economic vitality
  • to develop an annual Presidential Honors Program
    recognizing outstanding achievements in
    sustainable development and
  • to raise public awareness of sustainable
    development issues and participation in
    opportunities for sustainable development

48
PCSD Task Forces
  • Eco-Efficiency
  • Energy and Transportation
  • Natural Resources Management and Protection
  • Principles, Goals, and Definitions
  • Population and Consumption
  • Public Linkage, Dialogue, and Education
  • Sustainable Agriculture
  • Sustainable Communities

49
PCSD Goals Sustainability Indicators
  • The Council has adopted 10 national goals for a
    sustainable future
  • They are interdependent and must be achieved in
    unison, considering economic, environmental, and
    social equity issues

50
PCSD Recommendations
  • PCSD has recommended various steps to achieve the
    goal of sustainability
  • The recommendation are quite exhaustive
  • Some recommendations are
  • stabilize population
  • payment plan for commercial use of natural
    resources
  • protect biodiversity

51
Role of Local Governments
  • act as sustainable laboratories
  • authority to initiate positive change, and the
    flexibility to tailor programs to specific local
    circumstances
  • leaders to refine the vision for a sustainable
    community
  • involve citizens and local organizations

52
Sustainability Third World
  • Development efforts can be classified as
  • Indigenous
  • Western
  • Hybrid
  • Decrease in biodiversity
  • water pollution
  • soil erosion
  • air pollution
  • unplanned development

53
Sustainability Third World
  • Tourism
  • it usually leads to environmental degradation
    because the carrying capacity of natural resource
    is exceeded
  • Corruption
  • destructive to social, economic,and environmental
    conditions
  • distorted decision making processes
  • bribery

54
Sustainability Third World
  • Population
  • stresses have already stretched community
    resources
  • Lack of resources and knowledge

55
Macro-Economic Management
SD
  • Revised Minimum Standard Model
  • Computable General Equilibrium Model
  • Public Sector Planning and Management Information
    System

56
What Can We as People Do?
SD
  • Unemployment
  • work fewer hours to create more jobs
  • work more for the informal economy, like
    community activities, childcare, etc.
  • Life Style
  • rent or share goods like appliances, vehicles,
    services, etc.
  • landscape surroundings with native vegetation
  • think less is better

57
What Can We…….? (cont.)
SD
  • Education
  • use educational institutions as centers for
    developing sustainable society skills
  • Health
  • use hospital care only for acute problems
  • encourage recovery at home
  • indulge in leisurely lifestyles, nutritious diets
  • less use of medicine, tobacco and alcohol

58
What Can We…….? (cont.)
SD
  • Transportation
  • cut down on travel, especially long distance
  • conduct business electronically
  • use bicycles or walk wherever possible
  • Arts/Recreation
  • use community trails, theaters, and cinemas to
    foster friendship and social interaction
  • prefer small inexpensive hotels and reuse the
    resources provided, like bathing towels, etc.

59
What Can We…….? (cont.)
SD
  • Farming
  • use natural pest control, nutrient recycling,
    etc.
  • eliminate dependency on synthetic chemicals
  • harness wind, solar, biomass as sources of farm
    energy
  • General
  • be conservative and thoughtful
  • small things like getting rid of junk mailing
    lists make a difference

60
Cleaner Production
CP
  • buzzword of the 90s
  • focuses upon the methods and processes which
    prevent pollution and emphasize waste
    minimization, and which work in concert to
    provide greater efficiency and energy
    conservation
  • part of cradle-to-grave philosophy

61
Cleaner Production
CP
  • Promotes pollution prevention
  • Waste minimization
  • Greater efficiency
  • Energy conservation

62
Clean Production
CP
  • Use fewer materials, water and energy
  • Systems are circular
  • Slow flow of resources through production-
    consumption cycle
  • Implements precautionary principle

CP approach questions the very need for the
product or looks at how else that need can be
satisfied or reduced
63
Four Elements of Clean Production
CP
  • Precautionary Approach
  • burden is on polluter
  • Preventive Approach
  • emphasizes on prevention rather than on curing
  • Democratic Control
  • everyone has the say in the production process
  • Integrated and Holistic Approach
  • favors approaches like Life Cycle Assessment

64
Steps Towards Clean Production
CP
  • Changing the production process
  • Changing the product
  • reduced resource consumption
  • longer useful life of product
  • easy recycling
  • easy disassembly

65
Industrial Ecology
IE
  • Locate industries for mutually beneficial
    symbiosis
  • Waste of one industry is raw material for another
  • Mimics natural ecosystem
  • Cycling of materials and energy

66
Concept
IE
  • Ecology is the study of the interrelationships of
    biota with their physical-chemical environment
  • An ecosystem is a bounded system of dynamic,
    interdependent relationships between living
    organisms and their physical, chemical, and
    biological environment

67
Industrial Ecology Goal
IE
  • Integrate production systems
  • and product cycles
  • with natural ecosystems
  • and material cycles

68
Precautionary Principle
IE
  • Where there are threats of serious or
    irreversible damage, lack of scientific certainty
    shall not be used as a reason for postponing
    cost-effective measures to prevent environmental
    degradation.
  • Principle 15 of the June 1992 Rio Declaration
  • It calls for a reduction of all inputs to the
    environment

69
Performance Bonds
IE
  • Variation of the deposit-refund system
  • Incorporates both known and uncertain
    environmental costs
  • Incentive system
  • Induces environmental technological innovation
  • Shifts uncertainty costs to resource user

70
Conservation Strategies
IE
  • Industrial ecology approach acknowledged in the
    1991 update of the World Conservation Strategies
    (WCS)
  • Commits business to sustainability and
    environmental excellence

71
Soft Material Paths
IE
  • Underlying operating principle is efficiency
  • Aims at meeting peoples need with as little
    material usage as possible
  • Calls for most appropriate use of available
    materials

72
Industrial Metabolism
IE
  • Analogous to metabolic processes of a living
    organisms
  • States that inputs and outputs to industrial
    processes are not in balance with the ecosystem,
    and that is the root cause of the problem

73
E-factor
IE
  • Encompasses economics, enforcement, empowerment,
    education, efficiency, and excellence
  • Bottom line approach
  • Relates to Total Quality Management

74
3 Rs
IE
Reduce
Reuse
  • It is a move towards natures hallmarks of
    efficiency and material cycles

75
Indicators for Economic Activity
GDP
GNP
  • Definitions
  • Shortcomings
  • Solutions

76
What is GDP?
GDP
  • Gross Domestic Product
  • It measures total demand
  • total output sold by firms as measured by value
    added
  • sum of the incomes earned by persons in the
    economy
  • total expenditure by individuals on consumption
    plus expenditure by firms on capital equipment

77
What is GNP?
GNP
  • Gross National Product
  • Measures the value of the output produced by
    domestically owned production units, irrespective
    of the physical location of production.

78
Shortcomings of GNP and GDP
  • Emphasis is more on quantity than on quality
  • No consideration given to the environment
  • Traditional measurement methods overstate
    sustainable income
  • Not a measure of sustainable income, nor is it a
    measure of the maximum consumption rate possible
  • Does not account for depreciation of natural
    assets

79
Solution Green Accounting
  • NDP Net Domestic Product
  • GDP - Depreciation NDP
  • PNDP Proper Net Domestic Product
  • green accounting, environmental accounting

80
Environmental Accounting
  • Defensive expenditures (DE) to offset
    environmental degradation add to GDP
  • GDP - DE adjusted GDP
  • aGDP - environmental cost sustainable GDP
  • sGDP - depreciation of man made assets PNDP
    (proper net domestic product)

81
Green GNP
  • an indicator of economic activity which is
    consistent with the concepts of sustainability
  • Derived from environmental accounting framework,
    such as the System of Integrated and Economic
    Accounts (SEEA)

82
Two Economic Cycles
  • Produce, Consume and Forget Cycle
  • Produce, Consume and Recycle Cycle

83
Steps Toward Sustainability
  • Define what sustainability means for you
  • Begin research and conduct a survey to determine
    where corporate practice is impacting
    sustainability
  • Decide on sustainability indicators and their
    weights, if any
  • Decide on tools for sustainability planning and
    practice

84
Conclusions
  • Realize that
  • energy depletion or economic collapse is bad, but
    may not the worst thing that can happen
  • loss of genetic and species diversity may be far
    worse it will take million of years to correct
  • we belong to earth, earth doesnt belong to us
  • sustainable living is the only viable option

85
Conclusions
  • If we fail to convert our self destructing
    economy into one that is environmentally
    sustainable, future generations will be
    overwhelmed by environmental degradation and
    social disintegration. Simple stated, if our
    generation does not turn things around, our
    children may not have the option of doing so.

L.R. Brown 1993
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