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Monday, 12 July 2010

Principles of Sustainable Development

In the United Nations' blueprint for sustainable development, Agenda 21, six principles are laid out. These describe how a sustainable community might interact with other communities and with nature.

They also highlight the main drivers behind Slow Textiles:

Environmental Protection.
The resources and life-support systems needed for continuance of human wellbeing and all life must be protected.

Development.
'Quality of life' should be improved, with economic development as one of the objectives, not the sole objective.

Futurity.
The interests of future generations should be considered in what we leave behind.

Equity.
Sustainability will not work if the world's resources are unfairly distributed or if the the poor pay a disproportionate part of the costs of the transition to sustainability (as everyone has a part to play).

Diversity.
Diverse environmental, social and economic systems are generally more robust and less vulnerable to irreversible or catastrophic damage; diversity also allows individuals to chose more sustainable options.

Participation.
Sustainability cannot be imposed but requires the support and involvement of all sections of the community and all communities; this requires ensuring opportunities for participation in decision-making.