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close this bookSustainable Energy News - No. 06 September 1994 (INFORSE, 1994)
View the document(introduction...)
View the documentAcknowledgments
View the documentEditorial: Sustainability - A vehicle for Social Development
View the documentRegional News - Africa and Asia
View the documentThe Word Summit on Social Development
View the documentRegional News - Europe
View the documentOrganizing INforSE in Latin America
View the documentRegional News - North America
View the documentShort World News
View the documentBiofuel for Transportation: Adapt the Motors to the Fuel
View the documentThe Brazilian Ethanol Programme General Evaluation and Prospects
View the documentSmall Hydropower in Germany
View the documentPublications
View the documentEvents
View the documentSolar Energy For All !

Editorial: Sustainability - A vehicle for Social Development

The INforSE-network is now preparing the campaign Sustainable Energy for Social Development. The overall aim of the campaign is to convey the message that sustainable development and social development are closely linked. In our work for sustainable development, we must always remember this. The message of the INforSE-campaign is also that sustainable development can be a vehicle for social development.

Unfortunately, many decision-makers and others in the developing as well as the developed world see sustainable development as a luxury that we can't afford - at least, not now, but only in a distant future. This is a basic misunderstanding. Unsustainable development is a luxury that we, meaning the world, can't afford.

The developed world is in many ways suffering from the mistakes of industrialized and unsustainable development. Two of the most serious of these symptoms are the lack of social coherence and of meaning. As a result, growing parts of the populations are not needed by anybody. They can only look forward to being consumers paid for by the social security system.

Local sustainable development can offer these people a new sense of belonging somewhere, since, for local sustainable development, you need the hands and engagement of every body. Therefore, at least in developed countries, sustainable development can be a vehicle for social development.

In the developing world, it's important, for many reasons, to avoid development in the unsustainable direction of the now-developed countries, for environmental but also for social reasons. People in the developing countries often have more advanced social structures than those in the so-called developed countries.

By building the growth of the developing countries on sustainable local solutions, using the skills of the people without destroying nature and the local resources, the foundation of a successful, socially well-functioning, and sustainable society can be laid. The old-fashioned and outdated unsustainable solutions smash the local social patterns.

By telling this story and by giving examples of how to promote sustainable development at the World Summit for Social Development, it's the aim of this campaign to promote sustainable and social development, through the daily work done in the INforSE-network, among the local partners connected to the INforSE-network.

Hans Bjerregaard, Chairman, MULE INforSE Campaign Coordinator