Sustainability is improving the quality of human life while living within the carrying capacity of the world's ecosystems.
Green Skills strive for a community in which all people share and experience the principles of biodiversity and ecological integrity; equity and human rights, long-term economic health and personal well being.
The most commonly quoted definition is from the Brundtland Report (1987):
"Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the needs of future generations to meet their own needs. It contains within it two key concepts:
The concepts of needs, in particular the essential needs of the worlds poor, to which overriding priority should be given, and:
The idea of limitations imposed by the state of technology and social organization on the environments ability to meet present and future needs."
Sustainability is sometimes described as the ‘triple bottom line’, to reflect the importance of environmental, social and economic factors in decision-making. However, we need to integrate our actions across all three areas to achieve human and ecosystem wellbeing and happiness for all.
A selection of definitions on sustainability
(from Sustainable Seattle http://www.ecy.wa.gov/sustainability/more_defns.htm)
Sustainability is equity over time ... think of it as extending the Golden rule through time .. Do unto future generations as you would have them do unto you.
Leave the world better than you found it, take no more than you need, try not to harm life or the environment, make amends if you do.
A sustainable society is one that lives within the self-perpetuating limits of its environment. That society is not a "no growth" society - it is, rather a society that recognizes the limits of growth and looks for alternative ways of growing.
Sustainability is a new way of thinking about an age-old concern: ensuring that our children and grandchildren inherit a tomorrow that is at least as good as today, preferably better. We want to make sure that the way we live our lives is sustainable - that it can continue and keep improving for a long, long time.
If you get right down to it, sustainability is really the study of the interconnectedness of all things.
Growth based on forms and processes of development that do not undermine the integrity of the environment on which they depend.
Achieving the ecological balance which allows economic prosperity and social equity to be achieved across generations.