By the time humanity moves toward the 21st century,
we are left with no choice but to redefine the values and principles that
underlie our relationship with the Earth. Clearly, a new approach is required.
Creating a Spiritual Culture:
The industrial civilisation has brought about an abundance of goods and services
to humankind, but also an obsession for materialism and a distortion of human
Achieving Environmental Equity:
Planet Earth is the common home for all of us. We must all strive to share equitably
the benefits and burdens resulting from the use of the environment.
Greening Science and Technology:
Science and technology have played a critical role in the development of human
history and will be one of the key determining factors in shaping a sustainable
future. However, the impacts of technological development and their applications
have also become so serious that they threaten the stability of the ecosystem
and human society.
All members of human society are responsible for maintaining the integrity of
the environment as a Whole-Life-System. Individual efforts can be enhanced through
building networks within and among all levels of civil society and government,
industry and business, and non-governmental organizations (NGOs).
Education, especially at an early age, has a significant effect on how people
form attitudes toward the environment, and is thus crucial. Educational programmes
designed to enhance awareness of environmental issues and ethics must be developed
and applied at all levels of society through all available and practical means.
Nations share common responsibilities for preserving Earth's environment. This
amounts to active involvement in regional and international cooperative efforts
and joint implementation of environmentally-sound policies, while faithfully
complying with established multilateral agreements.
All members of society must cultivate a lifestyle that accepts and is consistent
with sufficiency rather than greed and excess. Bearing in mind that Earth's
resources are limited, each person must avoid a culture of extravagant material
consumption and pursue ways to preserve the planet by improving consumption
Active Involvement: Individuals
are encouraged to participate both morally and politically in all levels in
the decision-making process of environmental policies in order to improve the
quality of decision-making, avoid corruption, and ensure that their interests
can be properly represented.
Role of "Watchdog" and
Liaison: NGOs must serve the role of "watchdog" and must
be prepared to assess and evaluate policy decisions, and where necessary, propose
alternative environmental and development policies.
Practices: The industrial sector must actively apply eco-efficiency
principles in order to use less energy and materials for the same amount of
output and to reduce emissions and waste. This requires the widespread adoption
of environmentally-friendly production technologies, an increased use of recycled
materials, and a greater emphasis on substituting goods with services. The financial
and insurance sectors must also increasingly direct investment toward environmentally-sound
Science and technology alone cannot resolve the impending environmental crisis.
An interdisciplinary approach, which includes other branches of academic endeavors
such as the humanities and social sciences, is needed to develop active research
programs for a better understanding of the increasingly complicated environmental
problems. The key is to recognise that humans and the natural environment are
interdependent and part of a larger entity, the "Whole-Life-System."