Indicators of Sustainability - Reliable Tools for Decision Making
Policy Brief No. 1 from UNESCO, SCOPE, and UNEP
News headlines remind us daily of the growing pressures on the planet and its climate. We are increasingly vulnerable to the effects of droughts, floods and epidemics. Our expanding population and rising demand mean a growing risk of shortages of water, energy, food and other basic requirements.
Inequity, insecurity, population displacements, economic shifts and instabilities are increasing. How can we adapt our governance and management to these complex and rapidly changing conditions and define a clear way forward?
Dealing with each problem in isolation is no longer sufficient. We live in an increasingly integrated world system where trade-offs between different goals and solutions are often required. The international community has responded to this challenge by developing the concept of ‘sustainability’, preparing action plans, including Agenda 21, and adopting targets such as those in the Millennium Development Goals.