Sustainability is a concept that has been in the resource management literature
for over 60 years. It has taken many forms. Some of the concepts are:
sustainably yield (MSY), maximum economic yield (MEY), and
maximum social yield (MScY, also OY), Fisheries and forestry
experience with sustainable yield management
- Carrying capacity - the achievement and management in perpetuity . . . of
renewable natural resources without permanently impairing long-term
productivity, ecosystem integrity, or the quality of the land, air, and
waters and their environmental values . . . Similar to "steady state" or
"ecolibrium". (Pacific Northwest River Basins Commission, 1973,
Ecology and the Economy: A concept for Balancing Long-Range Goals,
The Pacific Northwest). Compare population and quality of life
projections and actual. Population is about what was predicted. Quality
of life, at least in income terms is well below, approximately half the
- sustainable development - United Nations Committee on Environment and
Development. For sustainable
- sustainable development - Earth Summit, United
Committee for Environment and Development, 1992, The Global
Partnership for Environment and Development: A Guide to Agenda 21.
- 27 principles
- 7 themes
- The Prospering World - sustainable
integrating environment and development
- The Just World - poverty, consumption, health
- The Habitable World - settlement, water, waste, health
- The Fertile World - water, energy, agriculture, forests,
fragile ecosystems, biodiversity
- The Shared World - oceans and atmosphere
- The Clean World - toxic and hazardous wastes
- The Peoples' World - education, gender, youth,
indigeneous peoples, business, industry, labor
- implementing sustainable development
- sustainable progress & green taxes - Worldwatch Institute, 1991, State of
the World, 1991, New York, W.W. Norton.
- total capital - Some ecological and neo-classical economists tend
define sustainability in terms of capital (Castle et al. 1994; Costanza and
Daly 1992; Ervin and Berrens 1993; Pearce 1993; Solow 1991, 1992). A
broad definition (Ervin and Berrens 1993) of total capital (TK) is the sum
of nonrenewable resource capital e.g., oil or minerals; renewable
resource capital, e.g., fish and forests; human-made capital, e.g., a
manufacturing plant and equipment; and human or intellectual capital,
e.g., education and acquired knowledge. To this could be added cultural
capital, e.g., art and music, and institutional or social capital, e.g., legal
principles and regulatory rules. A debate among ecological and neo-classical economists over the sustainability of biosocial systems is the
relationship between natural and human-made capital. Solow (1991,
1992), for example, says that as long as TK is equal or greater in the next
generation the system is sustainable. Costanza and Daly (1992) argue
that sustainability only occurs when there is no decline in natural capital.
Ervin and Berrens (1993) call these weak and strong criteria for defining
sustainability. The crux of the argument is whether natuaral and human-made capital are seen as complements of one another or substitutes
(Folke et al. 1994). Ecological economists see natural capital as
becoming more and more limiting for the further development of human
society. Classical economists take the view that human ingenuity will find
new forms of natural capital and adopt ways to save and more effectively
use natural capital.
- index of sustainable economic welfare - Herman Daly and John B.
Jr., 1989, For the Common Good, Boston, Beacon Press.
- Biosphere II - not so much
sustainable as nearly closed system with very
limited inputs. Oriented toward space and biotechnology in food, waste
- sustainable biosphere
initiative - Jane Lubchenco and 15 others, 1991,
The Sustainable Biosphere Initiative: An Ecological Research Agenda,
Solutions sustainability initiative. Bringing economy, environment
and community together. Governor Kitzhaber's executive order says,
"Sustainability means using, developing and
protecting resources at a rate
and in a manner that
enables people to meet their
current needs and also
provides that future generations
can meet their own
needs. Sustainability requires
meeting environmental, economic
needs." - Definition of
'Sustainability', Executive Order
Castle, E.N., Berrens, R.P., Polasky, S. (In press) The economics of
sustainability. Natural Resources Journal.
Costanza, R., Daly, H.E. (1992) Natural capital and sustainable
development. Conservation Biology. 6, 37-46.
Ervin, D.E., Berrens, R.P. (1993) Critical economic issues in ecosystem
management or a National Forest. In: Jensen, M.E., Bourgeron, P.
(eds.) Ecosystem Management: Principles and Applications.
Volume II of Eastside Forest Ecosystem Health. USDA-Forest
Service, Missoula, MT.
Folke, C., Hammer, M., Costanza, R., Jansson, A. (1994) Investing in
natural capital--why, what, and how? In: Jansson, A., Hammer, M.,
Folke, C., Costanza, R. Investing in Natural Capital. Island Press,
Pearce, D.W. (1993) Economic Values and the Natural World. The MIT
Press, Cambridge, MA. 129 p.
Solow, R.M. (1991) Sustainability: an economist s perceptive. Woods
Hole, MA, J. Seward Johnson Lecture, Woods Hole Oceanographic
Institution, Marine Policy Center.
Solow, R.M. (1992) An almost practical step toward sustainability.
Resources for the Future 40th Anniversary Lecture, Washington,
World Commission on Environment and Development, 1987, Our Common
Future, New York: Oxford University Press
smithc at onid.orst.edu
Updated:Friday, 20-Apr-2001 12:54:05 PDT
URL is http://www.orst.edu/instruct/anth481/ectop/ecsust.html