A planet which has boundaries – or with more positive words “a safe operation space for humans”. We must respect it. Yet, that is not enough. We must also seek to find socially just solutions. That is when we can speak of inclusive and sustainable development.
“When crossing unknown territory, a compass can be pretty handy. Achieving sustainable development for nine billion people has to be high on the list of humanity’s great uncharted journeys.” Oxfam is offering us that compass which should help us steer efficiently and without any more catastrophes through the coming years.
On the outside, the doughnut-compass shows nine processes (put together by earth-system scientists Rockström et al) like climate regulation, nitrogen cycle and biodiversity loss, all of which are crucial for steering free of any big icebergs. “Together, the nine boundaries constitute an environmental ceiling – what their authors call ‘a safe operating space for humanity’”.
Now, “how about combining planetary boundaries together with the concept of social boundaries?” That is when we look at the inner cycle. Here it is all about a solid social foundation on we build our system “below which lies unacceptable human deprivation.” The most important concept to take into account here are human rights. This is the space where we hope to see great developments at the Rio +20 meeting.
Watch the following video to learn more:
The project tries to prove that it’s “wealth not poverty which is putting this planet under pressure” showing for example that giving food to all the starving would only need 1% of the total global food supply. Similarly, “bringing electricity to the 19% of people who currently lack it could be achieved with less than a 1% increase in global CO2 emissions”.
The whole concept is quite easy, really: “Between the social foundation and the planetary ceiling lies an area – shaped like a doughnut – which is the safe and just space for humanity to thrive in.” Read the full article to find where the needle of the compass is directing.