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Definition of Enivronmental Sustainability
"A new type of thinking is essential if mankind is to survive and move toward higher levels"---
To define environmental sustainability we must first define sustainability.
Sustainability is the ability to continue a defined behavior indefinitely. To define what environmental sustainability is we turn to the experts.
Herman Daly, one of the early pioneers of ecological sustainability, looked at the problem from a maintenance of natural capital viewpoint. In 1990 he proposed that:
1. For renewable resources, the rate of harvest should not exceed the rate of regeneration (sustainable yield);
2. [For pollution] The rates of waste generation from projects should not exceed the assimilative capacity of the environment (sustainable waste disposal); and
3. For nonrenewable resources the depletion of the nonrenewable resources should require comparable development of renewable substitutes for that resource.
Coordinator of Public Services, Lynn Campus