According to Brundtland Commission,” Sustainable development is a process in which exploitation of natural resources is done to meet the need of the present generation without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.”
Sustainable development is durable and bearable development. It stresses on using the existing resources without degrading them for the future.
If we exploit the resources for cheap income at present, we will lose a handsome income in the future.
Therefore, the main aim of sustainable development is to balance among the population, various resources, various aspects of environment and development.
Various resources and means should be conserved and appropriately used.
People overuse the limited land to increase agricultural yield. Overgrazing causes desertification of grassland. Overuse of chemical fertilizer and insecticides reduces the quality of the land.
Mineral oil, mineral metals, natural gases and other non-renewable resources are decreasing rapidly because we are overusing them.
These things adversely affect the present generation as well as the future generation. Therefore, we should conduct sustainable development as the best measures to prevent ourselves from these huge problems.
Appropriate use of agricultural land, conservation and promotion of natural resources, availability of water, low use of chemical fertilizers and insecticides, etc. are some examples of sustainable development.
Similarly, it also emphasizes on the use of low polluting machines and low consumption of natural resources.
We should take economic benefit from natural resources with the appropriate use according to sustainable development. It also helps to uplift the present generation.
We should not only take present economic benefit but also we should conserve the natural resources for the future generation.
Goals of Sustainable Development
Sustainable development is an essential concept in terms of environment and development which emerged in the 1980s. It assures the present human welfare along with the welfare of future generation.
It has the following goals/objectives. They are
1. No Poverty
2. Zero Hunger
3. Good Health and Well-being
4. Quality of Education
5. Gender Equality
6. Pure Drinking Water and Sanitation
7. Affordable and Pure Energy
8. Decent Work and Economic Benefit
9. Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructures
10. Reduce Inequality
11. Well Maintained Cities and Communities
12. Responsible Consumption and Production
13. Climate Action
14. Life below Water
15. Life on Earth/Land
16. Peace, Justice, and Strong Institution
17. Partnerships for achieving Goals
18. Conserve the Environment
19. Use the Natural Resources Rationally
20. Conserve and Promote Biodiversity
21. Fulfil Human Needs
22. Long- term Vision
23. Control on Rapid Population Growth
24. Save the Existence of Human Race
25. Promote Self-Dependence and Public Participation
Importance of Sustainable Development
Sustainable development is necessary for the maintenance of the environment. The purpose of the development work is people’s welfare.
The importance of sustainable development is described below.
1. Appropriate Use of Natural Resources
Sustainable development teaches people to minimize the use of mineral oil, drinking water, insecticides, chemical fertilizers, and forest product, etc.
This will lead to the minimum use of natural resources and maximum benefit without wastage. It helps to conserve and promote the environment.
2. Sense of Responsibility
Sustainable development brings out a change in people’s knowledge, attitude, and skill. It makes people aware of the responsibility to use and preserve natural resources like mine, forest, land, sea-fish, and herbs, etc.
It creates the feeling that natural resources are the common property of all and nobody can use the property according to their personal will. It also helps to conserve the natural and social environment.
3. Development of Basic Infrastructures
Sustainable development emphasizes on the progress of health, education, agriculture, tourism, and social reforms for the development of the human being.
While making progress in these aspects, environment conservation and promotion should be conducted ahead in an integrated way.
4. Participatory Development
People’s participation is almost essential in the development work in order to achieve the aim of sustainable development. It creates the interest of local people in development work and environmental conservation with the feeling of ownership.
In this way, it increases the public involvement at all levels for the conservation of the environment.
5. Determination of the Limit of Development
Limited but effective use of means and resources is enough for the people to satisfy their basic needs, however, people are carrying more development works because of their greed. People must conduct development work as per the carrying capacity of the earth.
6. Long term-vision
Sustainable development aims at achieving the goal of economic and social development without destroying the earth’s means and resources.
It attempts to create the concept of maintaining the present work for the future and conserving the natural resources for the future generation.
Principles of Sustainable Development
It is evident that the protection and promotion of human civilization are impossible without sustainable development. Man is the focal point of development. Therefore, his activities must be eco-friendly.
The principles of sustainable development are as follows.
1. Conservation of Ecosystem
The ultimate aim of sustainable development is to conserve the earth. It is to make the ecological system durable. Preservation of aquatic and terrestrial ecosystem is necessary for the purpose.
2. Sustainable Development of Society
Sustainability of society depends on the availability of healthy residence, balanced diet, adequate health services, employment and quality education. If these elements become available to the people in society, it becomes a sustainable society.
It assists in developing a positive attitude towards nature and living beings.
3. Protection of Biodiversity
It is necessary to conserve all the living beings in the world. People should learn to conserve natural resources in order to protect living beings. Sustainable development focuses on it.
People must conduct programmes for the conservation of biodiversity. There must be coordination between the programmes.
4. Control of Population Growth
People maintain their life by utilizing these means and resources present on earth. But due to population growth, human needs like food, clothing, and housing, etc. increase.
The means and resources available in the world are not increasing as the population is increasing, so there is a lack of food, fertile land and all other natural resources. Due to this there is an imbalance in the environment and population and causes environmental degradation.
Finally, I want to tell you that population growth is the main cause of environmental degradation. So we must do family planning and control on population growth.
5. Development of Human Resources
People can play a vital role in the utilization and conservation of the environment. People must develop the knowledge and skill of caring for the earth.
Human resources can be developed by providing education, health care and training. Human resource contributes to adopt the principle of sustainable development.
6. Increase in Public Participation
A single person cannot do sustainable development. A joint effort of all is must. In order to translate the concept of sustainable development into action, public participation is almost necessary for any kind of developmental work.
7. Conservation of Cultural Heritage
Conservation of cultural and heritage is one of the most important principles of sustainable development. It emphasizes the conservation of social traditions, customs, religious places and cultural aspects of people.
8. Limit within the Earth’s Carrying Capacity
Development work must be within the carrying capacity of the earth. People can get all they require from the earth immediately. The earth has limited resources.
Limited means and resources on earth cannot be enough for the unlimited needs of people.
Over-exploitation of the resources has negative effects on the environment. Therefore, we should conduct development and construction activities considering the carrying capacity of the earth.
Application/ Use of Sustainable Development
It is essential to apply the principle of sustainable development to different development activities. We must use natural resources and other means as little as possible in development. High consumption by the rich creates inequality. Growth of inequality in society brings about the imbalance in the economic and social status and increases poverty.
Development and environment are also interrelated. We should not ignore environmental conservation while running development activities.
The “World Bank” says, the development work will be poor without the conservation of the environment and without the development, there will be a scarcity of the resources for the investment and, in turn, the conservation of the environment will be a failure.
Development has various sectors such as agriculture, industry, energy, forest, fish-farming, transport, tourism, and construction of infrastructures, etc. People should apply the principles of sustainable development while conducting these works.