Our Common Journey:
A Transition toward Sustainability
Summarized by:
Asa Young
Me 449
Husar
Our Common Journey:
The 4 Concerns
2
What is to be
developed?
1
What is to be
sustained?
Sustainable Development:
“the ability of humanity to ensure that it
meets the needs of the present without
compromising the ability of future
generations to meet their own needs."
3
What types of
links should exist
between 1 & 2?
4
What is the extent
of the future
envisioned?
Trends & Transitions:
A Coupled Plan
Earth’s Environment
Human Development
GOALS:
Trends & Transitions
1. Demographic
2. Health
•
Meeting Human
Needs
•
Preserving Life
Support Systems
•
Reducing Hunger &
Poverty
3. Economic
4. Civil Society
Trends & Transitions
5. Environmental
Strategies for Exploring the Future
Strategies need scientific credibility, political legitimacy, practical utility, and effectiveness.
Discussed Types
Study Panels w/ Knowlegable People
Elicitation of Expert Judgment
Internally Consistent Narratives
Strategic Gaming
Extrapolating Present Trends w/ Statistics
Causal Modeling
Integrated Assessment Models
Scenario Building
Strength
Accesses understanding that goes beyond data
Quantitative
Incorporates norms and values
Integrates scientific modeling and human ingenuity
Capture underlying forces
Incorporates scientifically verifiable relationships
Manages a large amount of diverse information
Gauge emerging risks
Weakness
Concensus Seeking
Possibly Incorrect
Not Scientific
Useless Conclusions
No Causal Understanding
Demands Data
Difficult to Incorporate Data
Idiosyncratic
Environmental Threats & Opportunities:
Major Concerns
Table 4.1 Assessments of the Importance of Environmental Hazards
• What are the greatest
threats that humanity will
encounter as it attempts to
navigate the transition to
sustainability?
• What are the most
promising opportunities for
avoiding or circumventing
these threats on the path to
sustainability?
Sources: UNCED (1992); World Bank (1992); WRI (1996); UNEP (1982) ; Easterbrook (1995);
Centre for Science and Environment (1995); Council on Environmental Quality and Department
of State (1982); Brown (1956).
Reporting on the Transition:
Indication of the Worst
Fundamental Idea of Sustainable Development: “humans can impair the life support systems of the natural
world, calling forth responses intended to protect environmental quality.”
The P-S-R Framework for designing Indicators
Critical Regions
Indicators are repeated observations of natural and social
phenomena that represent systematic feedback.
Indicators are essential to inform society over the
coming decades how, and to what extent, progress is
being made in navigating a transition toward
sustainability.
Source: Redrawn from Kasperson et al. (1995).
Courtesy of United Nations University Press.
Integrating Knowledge & Action:
A Research Method
Research Priorities
Develop a research framework for the science of sustainable development that integrates global and local perspectives to
shape a place-based understanding of the interactions between environment and society.
Intellectual Foundations
Biological
Geophysical
Social
Technological
Integrative Science
Combine above fields
Combine regions
Place Based Science
Critical Issues
Diversity vs. Manageability
Figure 6.1
Four interlinked, research-based components of
sustainability science.
Download

Our Common Journey: A Transition toward Sustainability