Mother Pelican
A Journal of Sustainable Human Development

Vol. 7, No. 10, October 2011
Luis T. Gutiérrez, Editor
Home Page


Advances in Sustainable Development


This supplement attempts to be a radar screen for recent/emerging/forthcoming advances in sustainable development. In selecting items for this supplementary page, priority is given to information about publications and tools with an educational and human-centric focus. This update includes the following reminders that sustainable development has a human face:

1. Suggestions for Prayer, Study, and Action
2. News, Publications, Tools, and Conferences
3. Advances in Sustainable Development
4. Advances in Integral Human Development
5. Advances in Integrated Sustainable Development
6. Sustainability Games, Databases, and Knowledgebases
7. Visualizations of the Sustainable Development Process
8. Sustainable Development Modeling and Simulation
9. Sustainable Development and the International Community
Note: Items in this page are updated as information is received and as time permits. If the reader knows about new pubs/tools that should be announced in this page, please write to the Editor.

1. Suggestions for Prayer, Study, and Action


"Have mercy on us, O God, according to your steadfast love;
according to your abundant mercy, remove terror from our lives.

"Consecrate our memories, O Lord,
when we call to mind those who suffered and died
as a result of September 11th and its consequences.

"Bless us as we experience anew the pain of loss,
and as we work to prevent such tragedy from happening again.

"Arouse our gratitude as we recall the quality of support and caring
extended to those who were injured, in shock and in mourning.
Inspire us to provide that quality of care whenever people are in need.

"Bring us together in love. Let not nation lift up sword against nation,
nor culture against culture, nor religion against religion, nor person against person.

-- World Council of Churches, 11 September 2011


The Earth Charter Initiative
Values and Principles for a Sustainable Future



"The mission of the Earth Charter Initiative is to promote the transition to sustainable ways of living and a global society founded on a shared ethical framework that includes respect and care for the community of life, ecological integrity, universal human rights, respect for diversity, economic justice, democracy, and a culture of peace."


Don't know what to do?




Action Guidelines
Volunteer Opportunities

2. News, Publications, Tools, and Conferences



Environmental News Network

Planet Ark
World Environmental News

World News Network

Mother Earth News

Climate Action News

World Technology News

Sustainable Development Media

World Pulse

WiserEarth News

New Internationalist

Yes! Magazine

Human Development News

Science Daily
Earth & Climate News
Sustainability News
Science & Society News

International Institute for
Sustainable Development (IISD)
Reporting Services

Policy-Strategy Coverage

Sustainable Development Policy & Practice
Sustainable Development - Small Islands
Biodiversity Policy & Practice
Climate Change Policy & Practice
Energy Policy Issues
Multilateral Environmental Agreements
Earth Negotiations Bulletin

Theme Coverage

Sustainable Development
Biodiveristy & Wildlife
Chemicals Management
Climate & Atmosphere
Forests - Deserts - Land
Human Development
Intergovernmental Organizations
Trade & Investment
Water - Oceand - Wetlands

Regional Coverage

Lating America & Caribbean
Near East
North America
South West Pacific

Rio+20 Coverage

Sustainable Development Conference
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
4-6 June 2012

United Nations News Service
Rio+20: Making it Happen
UN Sustainable Development News
UN Gender Equality News

Value News Network

Catholic News Service

Anglican Communion News Service

Ekklesia Christian News Bulletin

Religion News Service

LiveScience News

Inter Press Service (PSI)

Triple Bottom Line
CSR News

The Progress Report

Global Health News

Kosmos Journal


Eldis Development Newsfeeds

General - all subjects

Newsfeeds by Subject

Ageing populations
Aid and debt
Children and young people
Climate Change
Climate adaptation
Corporate responsibility
Finance policy
Food security
Health systems
ICT for development
Influencing policy
Jobs, Events and Announcements
Manuals and toolkits
Trade policy

Newsfeeds by Region

East Asia and Pacific
Latin America and Caribbean
Middle East and North Africa
South Asia



Transforming Energy Systems
WBGU, 2011

Adaptation Can Help Mitigation: An Integrated Approach to Post-2012 Climate Policy
Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei, 2011

Energy Access Scenarios to 2030 for the Power Sector in Sub-Saharan Africa
Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei, 2011

2010 International Religious Freedom Report
USA State Department, 13 September 2011

Key Source of Data on Income and Poverty
U.S. Census Bureau, 13 September 2011

Education Impacts Work-Life Earnings Five Times More Than Other Demographic Factors
U.S. Census Bureau, 12 September 2011

Blending Climate Finance
Through National Climate Funds:
A Guidebook for the Design
and Establishment of National Funds
to Achieve Climate Change Priorities

UNDP, September 2011

Fostering Innovation for Green Growth
OECD, 2011

International Energy Outlook 2011
US DOE/EIA, September 2011

The State of the World's Girls 2011 -
So, what about boys?

Plan International, September 2011

Leadership, Capacity Building,
and Sustainable Development
in Contemporary Africa

World Journal of Entrepreneurship,
Management and Sustainable Development,
Volume 7 Numbers 2/3/4, 2011.

Special Issue:
Green Economy and Sustainable Development

UN Sustainable Development Journal, August 2011

Charting International Labor Comparisons
USA BLS, August 2011

Charting International Labor Comparisons
USA BLS, August 2011

Will Rising Democracies Become
International Democracy Supporters?

Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
12 August 2011

Developing Linkages to Preserve Biodiversity
Andrew Long, SSRN, August 2011

Failed States Index
Foreign Policy anf Fund for Peace, August 2011

Enabling a Flourishing Earth:
Challenges for the Green Economy,
Opportunities for Global Governance

Klaus Bosselmann et al., Earth Charter Stakeholders Forum, August 2011

Education for a Sustainable Future
UN Rio+20, July 2011

Institutional Framework
for Sustainable Development

UN, Rio+20, July 2011

World Investment Summary Report
World Investment Full Report
UNCTAD, 2011

Investing for sustainable development? A review of investment principles – trends and impacts
IIED, July 2011

Helping UN negotiators protect the poorest
Climate Change Group, IIED, July 2011

Terrestrial Carbon Policy Development
TCG, June 2011

Society at a Glance 2011 - OECD Social Indicators
OECD 2011

Sustainability and the U.S. EPA
USA National Research Council, July 2011

State of the World 2011:
Innovations that Nourish the Planet

Worldwatch Institute, 2011

Mitigating Climate Change
Through Food and Land Use

Sara J. Scherr and Sajal Sthapit, Worldwatch Institute, 2011

Mainstreaming Climate Change Adaptation into Development Planning: A Guide for Practitioners

Sustaining forests:
Investing in our common future

UNEP, 2011

Green Scissors: Cutting Wasteful and Environmentally Harmful Spending
Friends of the Earth, the Heartland Institute, Public Citizen and Taxpayers for Common Sense, 2011

Manual of European Environmental Policy
IEEP, 2011

Progress of the World’s Women:
In Pursuit of Justice

UN Women, July 2011

Sustainable Land Management Technologies for Climate Change Adaptation in Africa
IIED, 20 June 2011

Climate Risks and Carbon Prices: Revising the Social Cost of Carbon
E3 Network, July 2011

Renewables 2011 Global Status Report
REN21, July 2011

Informing the Financing of Universal Energy Access: An Assessment of Current Flows
FEEM, July 2011

Global Corruption Report:
Climate Change

Transparency International, March 2011

Weathering the Storm:
Adolescent Girls and Climate Change

Plan-UK, June 2011

Guide to Green Growth
CDKN - July 2011

Engendering the Green Climate Fund -
An Opportunity for Best Practice

Heinrich Böll Foundation, 20 July 2011.

Climate Change Adaptation in Developed Nations
edited by James Ford and Lea Berrang-Ford, McGill University, 2011.

Growing a Better Future: Summary
Growing a Better Future: Report
Oxfam, June 2011

The World Agricultural
Supply and Demand Estimates

USDA, June 2011

Health in the Green Economy
WHO, 14 June 2011

Summary and Analysis of the
Bonn Climate Change Conference

IISD, 21 June 2011

Global Environmental Outlook (GEO-5)
UNEP - First Draft Online
To be published May 2012

Climate Change, Disasters and
Electricity Generation

Strengthening Climate Resilience
Climate Smart Disaster Risk Management (CSDRM)
ELDIS, June 2011

Carbon Fat Cats 2011
Sandbag Climate Campaign, June 2011

Education for Sustainable Development:
An Expert Review of
Processes and Learning

UNESCO, 2011

Biosphere Reserves and Climate Change
UNESCO, 2011

Appetite for Change:
Reinventing the Global Food System

SustainAbility, 23 Jun 2011

Climate Change and Your Health:
Rising Temperatures,
Worsening Ozone Pollution

Union of Concerned Scientists
June 2011

Climate Change and Your Health:
Rising Temperatures,
Worsening Ozone Pollution -
Technical Appendix

Union of Concerned Scientists
June 2011

UK National Ecosystem Assessment
The True Value of Nature
UK DEFRA - 3 June 2011

Growing a Better Future
(Global Food System)
Oxfam International
2 June 2011.

Catalysing Climate Finance
UNDP, 2 June 2011

World Population Prospects
United Nations, 3 May 2011
"World Population to reach 10 billion
by 2100 if Fertility in all Countries
Converges to Replacement Level"

Report on the Gender Initiative:
Gender Equality in Education,
Employment and Entrepreneurship

OECD, May 2011.

Findings of the
UK Poverty Truth Commission:
General Summary Report
Violence and Community Breakdown
Kinship Care
Poverty Truth Commission Manifesto
UK Poverty Truth Commission
April 2011

The Gender Wage Gap by Occupation
IWPR, April 2011

World Development Report 2011
World Bank, 11 April 2011

Conscious Leadership for Sustainability
Barrett Brown
Integral Institute, April 2011

Guide to Corporate Ecosystem Valuation
IUCN & WBCSD, April 2011

World in Transition –
A Social Contract for Sustainability

German Advisory Council on Global Change
April 2011

Scientific Assessment of Ozone Depletion: 2010
UNEP & WMO, April 2011



Live World Data
The Venus Project

Clean Energy Analysis Software

RETScreen International

IGES CDM Methodology Parameter Data
IGES, 2011

IGES Emission Reductions Calculation Sheet
IGES, 2011

OECD Sustainable Manufacturing Toolkit
OECD, 2011

OECD Family Database

OECD Social Expenditure Database

Integrated Valuation of Ecosystem Services
and Tradeoffs (InVEST)

Version 2.1, Natural Capital Project, 2011

Interactive Map and Rankings for the 2011 Failed States Index
Foreign Policy and Fund for Peace, August 2011

Socioeconomic Data and Applications Center (SEDAC)
NASA & Columbia University

World Bank Climate Change Data Portal

INFORMEA: United Nations Information Portal on Multilateral Environmental Agreements

IGES GHG Database

Emission Factors Database

Renewables Interactive Map

Forestry Industry Carbon Assessment Tool
Green Resources, Tanzania

Agent-based Computational Economics
of the Global Energy System

Climate Hot Map
Union of Concerned Scientists

Solar Thermal Barometer


Forest Monitoring for Action

Water Evaluation And Planning System

Long range Energy Alternatives Planning System
Energy Community

Global Land Tool Network

UN-Energy Knowledge Network
Multi-dimensional Energy Poverty Index (MEPI)
and Energy Development Index (EDI)

Measuring Energy Poverty
Visualization Platform


United Nations Data
UN Statistics Database
UN MDG Indicators
UN Human Development Index (HDI)

Humanity's Footprint Data
Ecological Footprint
Footprint for Nations
Footprint for Cities
Footprint for Business
Carbon Footprint
Personal Footprint
Footprint & Biodiversity
Footprint & Human Development

Earth Policy Institute Data Sets
Population, Health, and Society
Natural Systems
Climate Change
Energy Resources
Transportation Systems
Food and Agriculture
Economics & Development

World Bank
World Development Indicators (WDI)

Data for the Social Sciences

STAR Database Beta-Test Now in Process
Invitation to Participate

Links Government Investment,
Science, Technology,
Firms, and Employment

Global Cities of the Future
Interactive Map

McKinsey Global Institute
March 2011

TopTen Search Tool (Europe)
Indentifies the most energy-efficient
appliances on the European market

TopTen Search Tool (USA)
Indentifies the most energy-efficient
appliances on the American market

Sustainable Society Index
Interactive Map

Interactive Mapping of
Population and Climate Change

Population Action International

Global Advocates Toolbox
Population Action International

Development Timelines Data Application

Green Media Toolshed
Green Media Tools

Toolbox Top Ten
Progressive Communications Net

Teaching and Learning
for a Sustainable Future:
Dissemination and Training Toolbox

UNESCO Education for
Sustainable Development

Global Corruption Barometer
Transparency International, 2010

Analysis of Supply Chains

Happy Planet Index (HPI)

Global Debt Clock

Climate & Development Knowledge Network (CDKN)

Human Development Index (HDI)

Living Planet Index (LPI)

Quality of Life Index (QOLI)

Genuine Progress Indicator (GPI)

Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI)

Carbon Footprint Calculator

Climate Scoreboard

Global Climate Dashboard

Oil Reporter

Green Transitions Scoreboard

OECD Social Institutions
and Gender Index (SIGI)

OECD Gender, Institutions
and Development Database

TouchGraph Browser Google

Community Earth System Model 1.0

How to master complex projects

World Digital Library (WDL)

HathiTrust Digital Library

INED Population Simulator

WorldWideScience Search Engine

US Government
MetaLib Search Engine

Apps for Development

Adaptation Learning Mechanism

ENVISION Version 5
GIS-based tool for scenario-based community and regional planning and environmental assessments
Oregon State University



Conference Alerts
Find Conferences Worldwide
by Topic, Country, or Keywords.

Calls for Papers
Find Calls for Papers Worldwide
by Specialization, Country, or Keywords.

Journal Articles
The latest Tables of Contents
from thousands of scholarly journals
Search by journal title, ISNN, or keywords


Take Lead Conference
Green Growth Leaders
Copenhagen, Denmark
12-13 October 2011

International Conclave on Climate Change
Center for Climate Change
Engineering Staff College of India
Hyderabad, India
12-14 October 2011

40th Annual Conference
of the North American Association
for Environmental Education

Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina
12-15 October 2011

SMEs: Moving toward Sustainable Development
(SMEs = Small and Medium Enterprises)
Network for Business Sustainability
Montreal, Canada
20-22 October 2011

Arts, Sciences, Technology
and the Global Environmental Crisis
Conference at Concordia University
Montreal, Canada
4-5 Novermber 2011

First International
Energy & Meteorology Conference
Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia
8-11 November 2011

25th International Congress for
Conservation Biology (ICCB 2011)

Christchurch, New Zealand
28 November - 2 December 2011

UN Framework Convention
on Climate Change (COP 17)

Durban, South Africa
28 November - 9 December 2011

Behavior, Energy & Climate Change
Conference (BCEE 2011)

Washington DC, USA
29 November - 2 December 2011

International Conference on Emerging Economies
Symbiosis International University
Pune - India
12-13 January 2012

GLOBE Conference 2010
Trade Fair on
Business and the Environment
Vancouver - Canada
14-16 March 2012

Planet Under Pressure
In anticipation of UNCSD - Rio+20
London, 26-29 March 2012

Energy Future:
The Role of Impact Assessment

IAIA, Porto, Portugal
27 May - 1 June 2012

UNCSD - Rio+20
UN Conference on
Sustainable Development
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
4-6 June 2012

Integrative approaches to water resource management in times of global change
32nd International Geographical Congress
Cologne, Germany, 26 – 30 August 2012

3. Advances in Sustainable Development

Policy Brief on the
Institutional Framework for Sustainable Development

International Environmental Governance, 27 September 2011.

For the press release, click here

Rio+20 Sustainable Development Forum

Portuguese - Spanish - English

"The Getulio Vargas Foundation Law School in Rio de Janeiro (FGV DIREITO RIO) and the Program in Law and the Environment (PDMA), in partnership with other institutions, seeks to encourage open debate on themes related to the discussions set for the Rio + 20 Conference in 2012. The objective of the site is to provide an interactive environment for discussion in set phases, so that at the end of this process, certain recommendations may be made both to the Brazilian government, on themes of particular interest for Brazil, as well as to Secretariat General of the UN formed for the Rio + 20 conference preparations, which will receive recommendations until the 1st of November, 2011."

Three phases have been designated for the discussion:

1) Phase One: from the 25th of July to the 4th of August

Objective: identify the most relevant topics that require further development for their: a) regulation on a national level; b) regulation on an international level; c) effectiveness. Steps: a) voting in order to ensure a topic is debated; b) indicating topics that may be missing from the site; c) identify subtopics that may not have been foreseen.

Phase One - Summary Results: "An overall assessment reveals that sustainable development received the most votes among the general topics, followed closely by general principles. Within the subject of a green economy, sustainable production and consumption were most popular, followed in third by biodiversity and compensation mechanisms. In the realm of sustainable development, the liability of businesses and the liability of states received the most votes, followed by access to information, environmental education and the liability of financial institutions. Under the heading of new environmental conventions, the idea of a draft convention on environmental evaluation gained the most votes. Finally, non-regression principle in environmental law was the most popular of the general principles."

2) Phase Two: from the 10th of August to the 28th of August

Objective: conduct an open debate, in Portuguese and English, on every topic designated during the first phase. The objective is to discuss why and how a topic should be dealt with on the national and international levels and what mechanisms could lead to greater effectiveness in a certain area. The recommendations made during the debate phase will form the basis for the drafting of recommendations to be made at the end of the process.

Steps: debate in Portuguese and English on: a) how a topic should be regulated nationally; b) how a topic should be regulated internationally; c) which mechanisms could ensure greater effectiveness in a given area.

3) Phase Three: from the 14th of September until the 2nd of October

Objective: produce a working draft based upon the discussions in Phase Two. The working draft will draw together and organize possible inroads for producing a final draft of the recommendations. The objective here is to provide commentary on the working draft to consolidate proposed additions.

Documentation ~ Rio+20: United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, UNCSD, 2011

Phase 1 Results ~ Rio+20 Sustainable Development Forum - Phase 1 Results, Carina Oliveira, FGV, August 2011

Forthcoming ~ Phase 2 and Phase 3 Results ~ See also the Earth Summit 2012 Stakeholder Forum

4. Advances in Integral Human Development

  • Shaping the Future: A Proposal to Hasten a Global Paradigm Shift for the Security and Well-being of All Children Everywhere, Judith L. Hand, August 2011.
  • About the FACE (For All Children Everywhere) paradigm: "To shift the current paradigm from domination by force to one that abhors violence, FACE's underlying esprit de corps must spring from the female side of our biology because that is the side that most strongly favors nonviolence. It is also the side most consistently concerned with community, family, and children's wellbeing. Ideally the movement would be officially constructed to ensure that through the years, the majority of the top leadership remains slightly female. Failing that, the historical record indicates, and our biology dictates, that the movement will ultimately slip back under the sway of urges for domination and control coming from the male side of our biology, and concern for family, community, and children will eventually take second place. Over time, ignoring this fact of our nature will erode any progress we make now." For more, click here.

  • Sustainable Human Development in the Twenty-First Century: An Evolutionary Perspective, Ismail Sirageldin. Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland. EOLSS, June 2011.
  • Why should men and women be involved as allies in peacebuilding?, New Tactics in Human Rights, 7 February 2011.
  • 5. Advances in Integrated Sustainable Development

    The Venus Project
    Beyond Politics, Poverty, and War

    The following description is reprinted with permission from The Venus Project

    The Venus Project is an organization that proposes a feasible plan of action for social change, one that works towards a peaceful and sustainable global civilization. It outlines an alternative to strive toward where human rights are no longer paper proclamations but a way of life.

    We operate out of a 21.5-acre Research Center located in Venus, Florida.

    When one considers the enormity of the challenges facing society today, we can safely conclude that the time is long overdue for us to re-examine our values and to reflect upon and evaluate some of the underlying issues and assumptions we have as a society. This self-analysis calls into question the very nature of what it means to be human, what it means to be a member of a "civilization," and what choices we can make today to ensure a prosperous future for all the world's people.

    At present we are left with very few alternatives. The answers of yesterday are no longer relevant. Either we continue as we have been with our outmoded social customs and habits of thought, in which case our future will be threatened, or we can apply a more appropriate set of values that are relevant to an emergent society.

    Experience tells us that human behavior can be modified, either toward constructive or destructive activity. This is what The Venus Project is all about - directing our technology and resources toward the positive, for the maximum benefit of people and planet, and seeking out new ways of thinking and living that emphasize and celebrate the vast potential of the human spirit. We have the tools at hand to design and build a future that is worthy of the human potential. The Venus Project presents a bold, new direction for humanity that entails nothing less than the total redesign of our culture. What follows is not an attempt to predict what will be done, only what could be done. The responsibility for our future is in our hands, and depends on the decisions that we make today. The greatest resource that is available today is our own ingenuity.

    While social reformers and think tanks formulate strategies that treat only superficial symptoms, without touching the basic social operation, The Venus Project approaches these problems somewhat differently. We feel we cannot eliminate these problems within the framework of the present political and monetary establishment. It would take too many years to accomplish any significant change. Most likely they would be watered down and thinned out to such an extent that the changes would be indistinguishable.

    The Venus Project advocates an alternative vision for a sustainable new world civilization unlike any social system that has gone before. Although this description is highly condensed, it is based upon years of study and experimental research by many, many people from many scientific disciplines.

    We proposes a fresh, hollistic approach - one that is dedicated to human and environmental concerns. It is an attainable vision of a bright and better future, one that is appropriate to the times in which we live, and both practical and feasible for a positive future for all the world's people.

    The Venus Project calls for a straightforward approach to the redesign of a culture, in which the age-old inadequacies of war, poverty, hunger, debt, environmental degradation and unnecessary human suffering are viewed not only as avoidable, but totally unacceptable.

    One of the basic premises of The Venus Project is that we work towards having all of the Earth's resources as the common heritage of all the world's people. Anything less will simply result in a continuation of the same catalog of problems inherent in the present system.

    Throughout history, change has been slow. Successive groups of incompetent leaders have replaced those that preceded them, but the underlying social and economic problems remain because the basic value systems have gone unaltered. The problems we are faced with today cannot be solved politically or financially because they are highly technical in nature. There may not even be enough money available to pay for the required changes, but there are more than enough resources. This is why The Venus Project advocates the transition from a monetary-based society to the eventual realization of a resource-based global economy.

    We realize to make the transition from our present culture, which is politically incompetent, scarcity-oriented and obsolete, to this new, more humane society will require a quantum leap in both thought and action.

    An Obsolete Monetary System

    The money-based system evolved centuries ago. All of the world's economic systems - socialism, communism, fascism, and even the vaunted free enterprise system - perpetuate social stratification, elitism, nationalism, and racism, primarily based on economic disparity. As long as a social system uses money or barter, people and nations will seek to maintain the economic competitive edge or, if they cannot do so by means of commerce they will by military intervention. We still utilize these same outmoded methods.

    Our current monetary system is not capable of providing a high standard of living for everyone, nor can it ensure the protection of the environment because the major motive is profit. Strategies such as downsizing and toxic dumping increase the profit margin. With the advent of automation, cybernation, artificial intelligence and out sourcing, there will be an ever-increasing replacement of people by machines. As a result, fewer people will be able to purchase goods and services even though our capability to produce an abundance will continue to exist.

    Our present, outmoded political and economic systems are unable to apply the real benefits of today's innovative technology to achieve the greatest good for all people, and to overcome the inequities imposed upon so many. Our technology is racing forward yet our social designs have remained relatively static. In other words cultural change has not kept pace with technological change. We now have the means to produce goods and services in abundance for everyone.

    Unfortunately, today science and technology have been diverted from achieving the greatest good for reasons of self-interest and monetary gain through planned obsolescence sometimes referred to as the conscious withdrawal of efficiency. For example, the U. S. Department of Agriculture, whose function is presumed to be conducting research into ways of achieving higher crop yields per acre, actually pays farmers not to produce at full-capacity. The monetary system tends to hold back the application of these methods that we know would best serve the interests of people and the environment.

    In a monetary system purchasing power is not related to our capacity to produce goods and services. For example, during a depression, there are computers and DVD's on store shelves and automobiles in car lots, but most people do not have the purchasing power to buy them. The earth is still the same place; it is just the rules of the game that are obsolete and create strife, deprivation and unnecessary human suffering.

    A monetary system developed years ago as a device to control human behavior in an environment with limited resources. Today money is used to regulate the economy not for the benefit of the general populace, but for those who control the financial wealth of nations.

    Resource Based Economy

    All socio-economic systems, regardless of political philosophy, religious beliefs, or social customs, ultimately depend upon natural resources, i.e. clean air and water, arable land and the necessary technology and personnel to maintain a high standard of living.

    Simply stated, a resource-based economy utilizes existing resources rather than money and provides an equitable method of distributing these resources in the most efficient manner for the entire population. It is a system in which all goods and services are available without the use of money, credits, barter, or any other form of debt or servitude.

    Earth is abundant with plentiful resources; today our practice of rationing resources through monetary methods is irrelevant and counter productive to our survival. Modern society has access to highly advanced technologies and can make available food, clothing, housing, medical care, a relevant educational system, and develop a limitless supply of renewable, non-contaminating energy such as geothermal, solar, wind, tidal, etc. It is now possible to have everyone enjoy a very high standard of living with all of the amenities that a prosperous civilization can provide. This can be accomplished through the intelligent and humane application of science and technology.

    To better understand the meaning of a resource-based economy consider this: if all the money in the world were destroyed, as long as topsoil, factories, and other resources were left intact, we could build anything we choose to build and fulfill any human need. It is not money that people need; rather, it is free access to the necessities of life. In a resource-based economy , money would be irrelevant. All that would be required are the resources and the manufacturing and distribution of the products.

    When education and resources are made available to all people without a price tag, there would be no limit to the human potential. Although this is difficult to imagine, even the wealthiest person today would be far better off in a resource based society as proposed by The Venus Project. Today the middle classes live better than kings of times past. In a resource based economy everyone would live better than the wealthiest of today.

    In a resource based society, the measure of success would be based on the fulfillment of one's individual pursuits rather than the acquisition of wealth, property and power.

    The Choice Is Ours To Make

    Human behavior is subject to the same laws as any other natural phenomenon. Our customs, behaviors, and values are byproducts of our culture. No one is born with greed, prejudice, bigotry, patriotism and hatred; these are all learned behavior patterns. If the environment is unaltered, similar behavior will reoccur.

    Today, much of the technology needed to bring about a global Resource Based Economy exists. If we choose to conform to the limitations of our present monetary-based economy, then it is likely that we will continue to live with its inevitable results: war, poverty, hunger, deprivation, crime, ignorance, stress, fear, and inequity. On the other hand, if we embrace the concept of a global resource-based economy, learn more about it, and share our understanding with our friends, this will help humanity evolve out of its present state.

    For more information about this project, click here.

    6. Sustainability Games, Databases, and Knowledgebases

  • Interactive Map and Rankings for the 2011 Failed States Index, Foreign Policy and Fund for Peace, August 2011
  • The World Top Incomes Database, Paris School of Economics, 2011.
  • Sustainable Development Policy & Practice Knowledgebase, UNCSD/IISD, 2011.
  • Environmental Knowledge, Maps, and Graphics Library, UNEP/GRID-Arendal, 2011.
  • 7. Visualizations of the Sustainable Development Process

    Protecting Our Commons
    By Sarah van Gelder and Doug Pibel, Yes! Magazine, 29 July 2007

    Water, forests, and other natural "commons" provide the necessities of life. Shared stories, music, and knowledge enliven our cultures. Today, corporations are trying to enclose these and other commons—or externalize their costs onto them. But a movement is gaining momentum to protect our commons for generations to come.

    For an animated chart where you can hover over the symbols to learn more about our commons, click here. There are links in the same web page to download 8.5x11 and 11x17 posters. Courtesy of Yes! Magazine.

    8. Sustainable Development Modeling and Simulation

    Simulating Energy Transitions, Emile Chappin, Delft University, 16 June 2011.

    Energy infrastructures as socio-technical systems
    Simulating Energy Transitions, Emile Chappin, Delft University, 16 June 2011, Figure 1.2, page 3.

    Electricity and CO2 prices and CO2 emission levels for three carbon policies
    Simulating Energy Transitions, Emile Chappin, Delft University, 16 June 2011, Figures 4.13a and 4.13b, page 110.

    9. Sustainable Development and the International Community

    Click on the image to visit the web site
    RIO+20 UN Conference on Sustainable Development
    Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 4-6 June 2012

    Objectives & Themes of the Conference
    History of Sustainable Development
    UN System, IGOs, and NGOs
    Links to Documents, Publications, and Databases
    Earth Summit 2012 Stakeholder Forum

  • Millennium Development Goals for 2015, Gateway to the UN System's Work on the MDGs.
  • Education for Sustainable Development, United Nations "Decade of Education for Sustainable Development" (2005-2014), UNESCO.
  • Are We Learning to Change? Mapping Global Progress in Education for Sustainable Development, Daniella Tilbury, UNESCO/IRIS, 2011.

  • UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP 17)
    Durban, South Africa, 28 November to 9 December 2011


    South Africa plays host to the 17th Conference of the Parties (COP 17) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) that will be held in Durban from November 28 to December 9, 2011. With slow progress having been achieved at previous meetings, expectations are high for the talks to usher in a just, equitable and binding international agreement to deal, decisively, with the threat of global climate change. Consider the ethical dimensions in climate change debate. See Negotiators should resolve political issues ahead of Durban climate talks, by Christy van der Merwe, Engineering News, 19 July 2011. Visit the conference website.

  • AmazonRainforestBrazilWiki
    Amazon Rainforest, Brazil, South America
    2011 - International Year of Forests
    IRENA Brochure, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
    2012 - International Year of Sustainable Energy for All

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