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Hot Topics: Sustainability: Home

The theme for the academic year 2013-2014 at St. Ambrose University. This guide has resources on sustainable development and conservation.

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Wednesday- 7:45 a.m. - 9:00 p.m.
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Sunday- 12:00 p.m.-12:00 a.m.

Reference Desk 563/333-6245

APA Citation Guides

What is inside the tabs

Law and Legislation:
this tab covers the legal aspects of sustainability.

Business and Social Aspects:
this tab covers both sustainable development and conservation, and includes breaking news.

Definition

What is Sustainable Development?

Environmental, economic and social well-being for today and tomorrow

Sustainable development has been defined in many ways, but the most frequently quoted definition is from Our Common Future, also known as the Brundtland Report:

"Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. It contains within it two key concepts:

  • the concept of needs, in particular the essential needs of the world's poor, to which overriding priority should be given; and

  • the idea of limitations imposed by the state of technology and social organization on the environment's ability to meet present and future needs."

All definitions of sustainable development require that we see the world as a system—a system that connects space; and a system that connects time.

When you think of the world as a system over space, you grow to understand that air pollution from North America affects air quality in Asia, and that pesticides sprayed in Argentina could harm fish stocks off the coast of Australia.

And when you think of the world as a system over time, you start to realize that the decisions our grandparents made about how to farm the land continue to affect agricultural practice today; and the economic policies we endorse today will have an impact on urban poverty when our children are adults.

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SAU Reference Librarian

Stella Herzig's picture
Stella Herzig
Contact:
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