Environment and Sustainable Development
Development is crucial for the growth of a country, but it’s more vital to intent on sustainable development, which can make our people live more peacefully without any irritation. Humans are social animals, and thus its environment is another essential factor.
Therefore, before knowing the elements combining the environment and sustainable development, we must understand what sustainable development is. So, let’s have a closer look.
Table of Contents
- 1 What Is Meant by Sustainable Development?
- 2 Sustainability and Sustainable Development
- 3 Three Pillars of Sustainable Development
- 4 Principles of Sustainable Development
- 5 Environment and Sustainability Development
- 6 Corona Virus and Environmental Sustainability
- 7 Conclusion:
What Is Meant by Sustainable Development?
Sustainable development aims to meet our needs by eradicating poverty, climate change, and other factors affecting a country’s economy without compromising the needs of our future generation. Therefore, in this section, we’ll describe the connection between the environment and sustainable development in detail.
It is mainly coming under green environmental technology. In other ways, sustainable growth is a subset of sustainable development and has a goal to increase green-products in the market to reduce massive ecological footprints.
That means we should act to use organic products to improve human life without damaging or destroying our mother nature.
Many people use the term “sustainable development” synonymously with “ecologically sustainable” or environmentally sound development. They define it as “a process of change in which the exploitation of resources, the direction of investments, the orientation of technological development and institutional changes are all in harmony and enhance both current and future potential to meet human needs and aspirations.”
Sustainability and Sustainable Development
Sustainability and sustainable development seem alike but still have some differences. We can describe sustainable development into various definitions, but the Brundtland Commission gives the most prominent explanation of sustainable development in 1987.
According to him, “Sustainable development is a development that meets the needs of the present without compromising future generations’ ability to meet their own needs.”
That means living a sustainable life; we should take care of our planet, people, and our resources.
Thus, if we compare sustainability with sustainable development, we get, “sustainable development is the key which can lead us to sustainability.”
Three Pillars of Sustainable Development
Hereafter, knowing the basics of sustainability and sustainable development, we should now clear our concept of its fundamental backbone.
The three pillars of sustainable development are ecological sustainability, social sustainability, and economic sustainability. They are interlinked and dependent on each other to ensure sustainability:
Environmental sustainability or ecological sustainability
As the name implies, the relation between environment and sustainable development is the primary factor in maintaining sustainability.
We live in this world, which means we are using fuel, energy, materials, etc. from our mother nature. Thus, for maintaining such sustainability, we should ensure the limited usage of these sources.
Some resources of our environment are abundant or renewable, but some have scarcity, which encourages us to sustain a balance between those materials.
Unlike the above one social sustainability is the ability of any social system of a country or an organization to confirm social welfare or to provide social goods and maintain durability in the long run.
Social and environmental sustainability are connected, and from their overlapping, the bearable sustainability formed and economic and social sustainability mix-up to originate equitable sustainability.
The next pillar of sustainable development is economic sustainability. It ensures the use of resources to get an operational profit employing any business responsibly to generate a sustainable advantage for future growth.
Without responsible usage of our natural resources, the country couldn’t raise its economic value, which can also destroy the other two pillars.
Therefore, by intersecting economic and environmental sustainability, we can achieve viable sustainability.
To attain complete sustainability, we need to combine these three in a measurable proportion to sustain a truly circular economy.
Principles of Sustainable Development
The various principles are as follows:
- Present and future generations are alike entitled to this right.
- Environmental protection has to be regarded as an integral part of any developmental process.
- Each country has the right to utilize its resources without impacting the environment beyond its borders.
- The polluter must compensate for the harm caused to the environment –the “polluter pays” principle.
- Economic actions are coupled with the principle of obtaining preventative measures for environmental protection.
- States must collaborate for environmental protection.
- The alleviation of poverty and living standards, inequity in the different parts of the world are an integral part of sustainable development.
- States must limit and extinguish the unsustainable modes of production and consumption, and enhance the proper demographic policy.
- The most practical way of resolving environmental issues is the participation of all interested parties.
- States must develop and promote the people’s informed participation in the decision-making process (participatory Democracy).
- Environmental protection should involve all social classes. Development, Peace, and environmental protection are symbiotic and inseparable.
After grasping the principles of sustainable development, let’s move to our main point.
Environment and Sustainability Development
Our environment and sustainable development are two critical factors on which mostly debates occur.
We can define Environmental sustainability as creating and sourcing all aspects of lives such as food, renewable energy, clothing, etc.
Otherwise, we can also express it as a system of maintaining a balance and flexibility between the human need and its supporting ecosystem to end the destruction of biodiversity and sustain equity. In that way, we can renew our resources from nature and can further preserve them for our future generation.
Scientists studied the link between environment and sustainable development, gathered some reports, and became familiar with the significant connection between environmental deprivation and other social problems such as poverty and inequality.
By this, we can develop an action plan that reduces the damage to our ecosystem and sustains community feelings.
Various stress matters for our globe, such as water management, environmental pollution, GHG mitigation, climate change, soil erosion, and renewable energy, are under environmental sustainability.
Further, most of the devastating problems are human-made. Some of them are industrialization, deforestation, depriving agricultural practices, and over-exploitation, which become the primary concern for environmental instability.
Moreover, the air and water pollutant emissions, climate change, freshwater exploitation, and land-use change like obstacles affect our environment and sustainable development of the food sector.
Our ecosystem has a limited power to resist all these changes and leads to the destruction of various social factors; because it has sufficient potential to rejuvenate itself. To revive ourselves from natural disasters, we must stop further damage to our natural sources and should maintain ecological steadiness.
Thus, various environmental sustainability projects such as preserving wetlands, replanting forests, and protecting natural areas from resource harvesting are initiated. The biggest challenge is to sustain our needs from nature against the growing industrialized society.
It also emphasizes handling and defending the natural resource cycles, habitats, social conditions, materials, and relationships that help in the functioning of the ecosystem for human welfare.
For that reason, a big goal of reducing water usage per person and greenhouse gas emissions by 20 percent and decreasing the waste deposition in landfills by 90 percent within three years before 2020 was made. And the good news is we have achieved more than our target.
But still, we have to work hard to improve strategies to attain science-based objectives for greenhouse gas emissions to control global warming and to lower GHG emissions by 30%.
For completing our 2025 goals, we’re implementing the reduction of water usage by 10% plus advancing our recycling rate to 80%.
Corona Virus and Environmental Sustainability
Due to the social impact of pandemic COVID-19, there is distraction in our sustainable development goals, and it’s our responsibility to look forward to limiting its power on our economy.
That’s why IISD (International Institute for Sustainable Development) made a threefold mission to maintain a stable climate, sustainable resource management, and fair economies. Those three ideas are:
- Resilience is essential.
- The stimulus must be sustainable.
- Inequality is magnified.
There are many concerns regarding our environment and sustainable development. One of the reason is that it is a warning that something needs to be done about how our world works. Also, one might think the problem has existed for so long now. Still, no one has the urge to do anything about it.
All countries are aware of the need to take measurable steps necessary for survival on the planet. However, there is still more to know about these issues. It is one of the ways to ensure that these problems do not get worse before our eyes.
There are many areas where environmental pollution is a major issue. Therefore, sustainable development is one of the best solutions to keep ecological problems under control and prevent them from worsening.
References and Sources:
- www.sciencedirect.com – “Topics on Environmental Sustainability.”
- www.researchgate.net – “Jibril, Abubakar. (2011). THE CONCEPT AND PRINCIPLES OF SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT.”
- www.iisd.org – “What is sustainable development?”