how is the term officially used?
The term sustainable development was coined in the paper Our Common Future, released by the Brundtland Commission. They define sustainable development as
“the kind of development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.”
what’s useful about the term?
There is now almost a global understanding of the term sustainability. Even if a wide group of people are still unfamiliar with the term used in connection with social and ecological issues, but rather as ‘lasting’, people in the bubble know what it’s about.
The Sustainable Development Goals reinforced the term.
my personal critique and how I use it
I believe the term sustainability doesn’t offer what we need: A positive vision about the future that people want to participate in. Worse than that, what it offers is keeping things as they are – which would now mean nonfunctional. To me, the change I am striving for is about something else…
alternative and my motivation
On this blog and when you have encounters with me, I use the terms aliveness and enlivenment. Being fully alive is what motivates me to do what I do. Aliveness to me means more than just my own personal aliveness. Everything I say and do refers to systems – like the system earth. Aliveness in an eco system means that it’s living in a way that ensures their offspring to stay alive for 10.000 generations.
If I do use the term sustainability, it’s for practical and convenience reasons.