Q. Sustainable development does not end sustainability of environment and resource system; it also requires sustainability of economic and social systems. Explain. (250 words)23 Jan, 2020 GS Paper 4 Theoretical Questions
- Define Sustainable Development and relate it to questions demand.
- Highlight how sustainability of environment is achieved with example.
- Highlight why there is a need for sustainability of economic and social systems.
- List some steps to achieve so.
Sustainable Development is a model by which the present generation’s needs are fulfilled alongside integrity for sustaining future generations needs is not compromised. This requires human development such that sustainability of natural ecosystem is maintained by its preservation and reforming economic and social systems that depend upon it.
Sustainability of Environment
- Reducing overexploitation of natural resources like forest and water, allowing for nature for their regeneration. E.g.: Ban on sand mining in mangroves in India.
- · Reducing pollution that disturbs ecosystem and its components inhibiting its regenerative capacity like lowering greenhouse gas emissions through Paris Goals.
- Conservation and Preservation techniques on lines of biodiversity conservation so that ecosystem services are continuously provided, like National Parks, Biodiversity Hotspots.
Need for sustainability of Economic and Social Systems
- Social issues like poverty, inequality, inaccessibility to clean water etc. breeds ground for conflicts resulting in challenges to progress made in environmental conservation, for example taking away of forest rights from tribals lead them into illegal activities like poaching by threatening their traditional livelihoods.
- Rising population, individualistic and consumerist attitude requires more resource consumption per capita, more wastage leading again pressure on natural resources.
- Sustainable Development requires human development should balance with environmental concerns, reforms need to be made in the present socio-economic systems so as they remain harmonious in long term, example SDG goals.
Some Steps for sustainable Economic and Social Systems
- Agenda in UN-Habitat for making sustainable cities
- Lower dependence on fossil-based fuels and increasing renewable energy usage like solar based.
- Lowering wastage, waste-to-energy generation, Circular Economy approach etc.
- Reducing inequalities- income, gender etc. Participatory models for decision making by involving locals.