Ecological Sustainability and Human Development
Ecological sustainability is a term used to describe the way that humans are affecting ecosystems and their health. There are several ways that people are threatening ecological sustainability. One common example is cyanide fishing, which has resulted in coral reefs losing their diversity. Coral mining is another common threat to coral reef sustainability, and general human activity has resulted in a decline in these ecosystems. Similarly, the Appalachian region in the southwestern United States has been deemed a highly biodiverse region, and teeming with plants and animals.
There are many facets to environmental sustainability. The road towards achieving it will be different for every country, region and sector. Yet the goal remains the same: providing food, shelter and other necessities to ten billion people in the next two generations without destroying the planet's natural capital. Here are a few of the concepts involved in ecological sustainability. Let's examine the most popular one: ecological footprint. This concept measures the amount of biologically productive land required per person on earth. In 2008, this required 2.7 hectares of land per global citizen. This amount was exceeding the natural biological capacity of 2.1 hectares. The world had an ecological deficit, and it had to fill it with extra sources that were not sustainable. These extra sources are embedded in the world's trade, and they can even be borrowed from the past.
Environmental sustainability has several levels. The first level, called Level 1, identifies the most pressing concern and involves the highest degree of urgency for addressing the problem. It refers to actions that endanger human survival and include environmental impacts that have a negative impact on human wellbeing. The second level, called Level 2, refers to actions that reduce quality of life and are inconsistent with other values, aesthetics, and human rights. All levels are critical, and the most urgent actions will have the highest impact.
Environmental sustainability begins with the definition of a species. A species is a group of organisms that share a common appearance, behavior, and genetic make-up. Biological species can interbreed and produce fertile offspring. The third level, called Ecological Footprint, is concerned with the amount of bioproductive land needed to sustain various consumption patterns. Its concept is in alignment with Level 1 of the hierarchy. So, what should ecological sustainability mean for your business?
Environmental sustainability is a broad set of practices aimed at managing natural resources in an environmentally friendly manner without jeopardizing economic growth. It includes considering the limits of environmental degradation, which are known as planetary boundaries. These limits determine the amount of degrading that a resource can sustain before posing a serious threat. This makes it imperative to carefully manage resources at both local and global levels. The following are some measures that governments can take to improve their ecological sustainability.
The Ecological footprint is one measure of ecological sustainability that measures human consumption in relation to biologically productive land. In 2008, the average global citizen consumed 2.7 hectares of biologically productive land. However, this exceeded the natural biological capacity of only 2.1 hectares. This ecological deficit must be made up by extra sources, which are either unsustainable or borrowed from past generations. It is also necessary to make the use of appropriate technology in a culturally appropriate way.
In addition to these measures, cities can implement urban farming to produce locally grown foods. Putting up a dirt bed is easy and can be placed almost anywhere. Encouraged carpooling, recycling, and using reusable bags can all have a dramatic impact. A recent report showed that seventy-five percent of solid waste is recyclable, but that 70 percent of it is still dumped in trash. Incorporating more open space into cities can also help them become more ecologically sustainable. Creating activity centres and hiking trails for the public to use will also help reduce waste.
Beyond these basic measures, the sustainability community has developed a growing list of other metrics. For example, environmental performance indexes and corporate sustainability reporting can help determine the level of social and economic governance in a given country. Other measures include the ecological footprint, social impact assessment, and environmental performance index. The Center for Ecological Audit (CES) is a collaborative effort between the Labor League Foundation and the Sufi Trust to assess the performance of sustainable development and socially just policies.
Ecological sustainability is a term used to describe how human activity affects ecosystems. Specifically, environmental sustainability relates to the ability to maintain current rates of renewable resource extraction and pollution assimilation. This term has many implications in the human development arena, as human activities and behaviors affect ecosystems and their resources. Some of these effects are irreversible, including depletion of resources, extinction of species, and habitat destruction. Increasing the sustainability of human development is therefore an urgent need. Projects and plans must conduct environmental impact assessments (EIA) to determine the impact of those projects on ecosystems. Specifically, EIAs are geared towards sustainable development indicators.
In addition to reducing greenhouse gas emissions, the impacts of oil sands operations are highly measurable, which makes them a valuable source of natural resources. A process hazard analysis, for instance, can identify the risks of using unplanned hazardous materials in a production process. A team may prioritize these potential hazards, and evaluate their risks for human health. For more information on the environmental impacts of oil sands operations, visit our website.
Sustainable land management encourages alternatives to the destruction of biodiversity and habitat. By encouraging alternative methods of agriculture, sustainable land management is essential to coexisting with wildlife. In essence, the impact of human activity on the environment is a concern, since ecosystems and biodiversity directly contribute to human well-being. The Green Party is committed to enforcing the Endangered Species Act, and will support policies that encourage ecological restoration.
Achieving environmental sustainability may seem like a daunting task, but it is achievable. There are countless ways an individual or business can practice ecological sustainability. For example, planting a home garden, buying locally and purchasing carbon offsets, and limiting pollution are all examples of socially and economically sustainable practices. This approach is important on many levels, but also on the personal level. If everyone does their part, the benefits will accrue.
As global population and urbanization grow, the challenges of ecological sustainability grow as well. The destruction of natural habitat and over-cultivation threaten soil productivity. Inefficient use of natural capital, such as water and soil, causes major economic damages. Inefficient marine fisheries cause $80 billion worth of waste annually. Consequently, a comprehensive policy framework is needed to encourage resource efficiency and waste management across all sectors of the economy. But how do we go about implementing this policy?
One way to promote sustainable living is by addressing the interrelated problems of social inequality and environmental degradation. Environmental sustainability is an important part of social justice, and is a societal imperative for both poverty reduction and global environmental protection. Fortunately, there are multidisciplinary approaches that can address both issues at the same time. For example, the global movement toward universal basic income (UBI) has gained attention for its strategies for improving ecological sustainability.
Increasing consumer awareness about environmental impacts creates new market opportunities for green technologies. Such innovations have the potential to offer a profitable alternative to unsustainable production techniques. Yet, increased regulatory costs impede industry's efforts to invest in these new technologies. And a growing number of environmental regulations may limit profit potential. But if companies invest in "clean" technologies, the market for them will expand rapidly. Ultimately, sustainability is about a balance between economic viability and environmental protection.
While many societies claim to be environmentally sustainable, the question of property rights remains largely unresolved. Various aspects of sustainable development should be considered, including human rights, environmental protection, economic viability, and political stability. For instance, the issue of ownership of natural resources must be analyzed from a pluralistic perspective. For instance, while the sphere of politics and economy is governed by democratic processes, the concept of property cannot be reduced to a single dimension. Rather, it needs to be analyzed on a global scale and planetary level.
Environmental sustainability has been a problem for humanity since time immemorial. Even our ancient ancestors recognized its importance. In fact, an ancient volcanic eruption may have been responsible for an abrupt population decline, a study in the journal Procedia noted. Meanwhile, the Roman Empire deforested large parts of the Mediterranean during its centuries-long expansion. In the same way, the Soviet Union depleted the Aral Sea within three decades due to water diversion.
To address this problem, we must invest in smart solutions. Developing smarter technologies to monitor water and air quality can be an effective way to address environmental issues. For example, TNC's Fishface project makes use of facial recognition software to determine fish species. The result is lower costs for on-board monitoring of tuna fishing vessels, helping tuna fisheries become more ecologically sustainable. Another example is the development of soil health measurement tools, which allow farmers to switch from managing lands for annual productivity to managing them for soil health. This allows farmers to maximize yields while reducing pollution in rivers.
Wipro and WWF recently signed an MoU focused on IT solutions for ecological sustainability. This agreement is expected to gain momentum in mid-2009. Wipro and WWF will work together to develop new solutions, such as energy-efficient industrial lighting and water recycling. The partners plan to leverage IT expertise and new products to help the organizations meet their goals. A MoU between these two organizations is expected to be finalized in the next few weeks.
The city is the mark of human civilisation, and its cities play an important role in the pursuit of new paradigms of thinking and action. Solutions for ecological sustainability are a central part of this paradigm, and cities hold immense potential to solve sustainable development challenges. They need to be responsive to global trends, scientific discoveries, and technological innovations. In this way, cities can achieve their goals while making a greater impact than they could in the past.
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