Section 1: Sustainability
Sustainability became a byword as the ecological environments of the earth’s wealth were shown to be depleting, and decision leaders wanted a shortcut to mask attempts to maintain the greatest possible continuation of human life.
Sustainability is therefore characterised in a number of forms and means, but the World Commission on Environment and Growth describes sustainability as a capacity to meet “the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs” (WCED, 1987). Various approaches are often used to assess the necessary approach to sustainability, like Wackernagel and Rees’ (1996) ecological footprint, which compares the sustainability of the region with the overall products, resources, resources and land it uses as necessary towards it carrying capacity.
Whitehead (2011) has suggested two models dependent on priority: balanced and hierarchical. The holistic sustainable model proposes an equitable treatment and a position for the ecological, social and economic powers, whereas the hierarchical model proposes a high priority for the ecological forces, accompanied by social and, lastly, economic forces (Appendix A & B).
The biodiversity problem stemmed from the awareness that the natural world is readily manipulated for the gain of usage, but the strong economic production would not necessarily contribute to the potential regeneration of the damaged habitat back to its original state (Ayres, van den Bergh and Gowdy, 1998).
The discourse on sustainability started when major shifts in the natural world as well as the catastrophic impact of climate change development and use on habitat destruction and failure to fulfil basic human needs were understood. In 1987, the World Commission on sustainable development reported Our Common Future highlighting alternative paradigm for humanity to address environmental degradation and world poverty. Within the next twenty years sustainable development became a key policy objective for governments and international bodies, business and even individuals (Hobson, 2004).
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A: Balanced Sustainability Model
Source: Whitehead, 2011
B: Hierarchical Sustainability Model
Source: Whitehead, 2011
C: Proposed National Partnership for Sustainable Development