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Section 2 Self Assessment Questions

1

Define 'sustainable development'

The Brundtland Report defines sustainable development as 'development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs'. It contains within it two key concepts:

  • the concept of 'needs', in particular, the essential needs of the world's poor, to which overriding priority should be given; and
  • the idea of limitations imposed by the state of technology and social organisation on the environment's ability to meet present and future needs.
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2

What most important Principle was enunciated in the Stockholm Declaration and repeated in the Rio Declaration?

It was Principle 21 that became Principle 2 in the Rio Declaration:

'States have, in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations and the principles of international law, the sovereign right to exploit their own resources pursuant to their own environmental policies, and the responsibility to ensure that activities within their jurisdiction or control do not cause damage to the environment of other States or of areas beyond the limits of national jurisdiction.'

Principle 2 of the Rio Declaration states:

'States have, in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations and the principles of international law, the sovereign right to exploit their own resources pursuant to their own environmental and developmental policies, and the responsibility to ensure that activities within their jurisdiction or control do not cause damage to the environment of other States or of areas beyond the limits of national jurisdiction.'

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3

One key word captures the change in emphasis and direction between the Stockholm and Rio Conferences. What was that word?

DevelopmentCheck your answer