Commentary on Brundtland report for Stanford University Course

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According to Brundtland definition which states that “sustainable development meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs” we can identify the interconnection between the temporal and spatial dimensions and conceptual view of the author.  He is sure that facing the problem of overpopulation is not the reason to forget about the problems which are caused by overproduction: environmental degradation, global warming, deforestation, species loss, toxic wastes. He argues that implementation of sustainable development strategies now can offer future generations a chance to live in green and healthy world. Achieving sustainable development is our goal and our mission and we need clear understanding of the main idea – if we demand cacao now and hear it doesn’t matter that someone to fulfill our needs is allowed to use child labor on cacao plantation or if there is demand on tables and chairs then we are not empowered to deforest regions in Latin America just to supply the demand. He shows that implementing sustainable development concept contributes to long-term economic development and allows future generations to fulfill their needs.

Surveying the problem we understand that following these ideas will have an enormous impact on business: product development process and innovation, design, manufacturing, marketing strategies and the whole chain of production. Government’s implication is not enough to influence the production processes. Even the implication of over governmental structures like UN didn’t lead to some major successes. United Nations can adopt some resolutions and programs, governments can vote new laws which will lead companies to face the need of changing the production processes in accordance with demands of sustainable development. But first of all companies have to understand that corporate responsibility and business ethics is not a myth. They need to review the model of manufacturing goods, to make innovation experiments and introduce new technologies which will economize the quantity of demanded resources and will be environmental-friendly. As example we can use General Motors which implemented recycling process. Now it helps to economize two billion dollars a year.

The investments in development of sustainable products are high. But in long-terms the profits are higher. 750.000.000.000 dollars are throwing to garbage every year according to FAO’s report 2013. 1,3 billion tons of food are throwing to garbage and 54% are damaged in the sector of “upstream” : phases of gathering, production, transportation and selling. It means that improving the conditions and technologies in “upstream” sector can increase the profits more than 375.000.000.000 dollars per year.

Time is going and the moment to understand the importance of sustainability arrived. If companies will lead this revolution our children will live in green and healthy world.

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