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Environment And Sustainable Development Essay

1788 words - 8 pages

INTRODUCTION

Natural hazards have induced catastrophic losses which are one or more related losses whose consequences are extremely harsh in their severity, such as bankruptcy, total loss of assets, or loss of life. The global loose from just three types of natural hazards which are windstorms, floods, and earthquakes. It consumes huge amounts of limited available capital and significantly reduces resources for new investment.

In developing countries, the parallel problems of underdevelopment, environmental degradation, and rapidly expanding population pose severe constrains on the ability to cope with natural hazards. Both pre-disaster planning and post-disaster recovery periods offer ...view middle of the document...

Thus, developing countries must concern more on the link between the poverty and vulnerability to natural hazards. In order to reduce the potential loss of life and improve the capacity to anticipate and recover from upsetting events, the issues of how to reduce poverty and place pre-disaster planning and recovery in sustainable development context must be addressed.

WHAT IS SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT?

The concept of sustainable development is concerned about resource consumption and environmental protection in economic development. Sustainable development is an important concept for the natural- hazards field. It should be properly implemented so that long term community development benefits can be achieved.

The most common definition of sustainable development is the development that meets the needs of present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. It requires comprehensive strategy on economic development and environmental protection.

Sustainable development plays an important role in world wide environmental movement until Agenda 21 is adopted. Agenda 21 made the sustainable development widely accepted as general policy by national governments and multinational organizations. The focus of sustainable development goes beyond the maintenance and preservation of the natural resources base and of ecological system.

HOW ARE THE PRINCIPLES OF SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT LINKED TO NATURAL DISASTER REDUCTION?

The principles in Agenda 21 can be applied to natural hazard reduction. The first principle is needs and ecological limits which recognize that all members have minimal rights to assure basic health and safety but recognize to natural limit. The second principle is precautionary action which recognizes that scientific uncertainty about causes and consequences of hazards should not be a reason to prevent mitigation actions. Next, intergenerational equity accounts for natural hazards to assure efficiency in use of development funds to be available for future investment. Then, reduction of poverty is the fourth principle. It aims to improve equity within generations by providing sufficient low cost, low risk land and housing. Two other sustainable development principles are responsible regionalism and the polluter pays. Responsible regionalism assures that community development actions consider the hazard impacts on other communities while polluter pays require that culpable individual who causes adverse community wide hazard must pay for some of the costs incurred by the community. A final principle is participation. Each individual must be provided with equal opportunity to shape natural hazards reduction action.

In short, sustainable development can be defined in the context natural hazards reduction as a process of development that achieves five interrelated objectives which included long term economic development, health and safety through recognition that natural hazards pose an ecological limit to...

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