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Maurice Strong Quotes
, 1929 -
What pleases me most is that sustainable development is on almost everybody's agenda now.
I have a cow's valve in my heart.
Don't accept that you can't make a difference. Because if you can't make a difference, you won't make a difference, and if you put a multiplier on that we will continue on an unsustainable pathway.
Make A Difference
We may get to the point where the only way of saving the world will be for industrial civilization to collapse.
After all, sustainability means running the global environment - Earth Inc. - like a corporation: with depreciation, amortization and maintenance accounts. In other words, keeping the asset whole, rather than undermining your natural capital.
We in the industrialized world make a greater difference because our ecological footprint, our impact on the condition of the environment, is 40 to 50 times larger than that of people in the developing world.
The combination of population growth and the growth in consumption is a danger that we are not prepared for and something we will need global co-operation on.
A shift is necessary toward lifestyles less geared to environmental damaging consumption patterns.
Ted Turner is still a leader. And he sets a great example. His ability financially has been reduced, but his influence and his example still is an important asset to the whole environmental movement.
Also, it is interesting that developing countries, with China and India perhaps in the lead, where the future of the global environment will be decided are now on board with the case for sustainable development.
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I am convinced the prophets of doom have to be taken seriously.
I am on the board of corporations who contribute both to environmental problems and their solutions. And I am on the NGO side: the Earth Council and other organizations.
I am President of the UN created University for Peace, which has a strong commitment to the relationship between peace, security and the environment. I meet with young people around the world and I always come away enthused and encouraged.
I believe we are going to move into a situation where the more effective conferences will be smaller, more specialized, more focused, with occasional large gatherings to get the attention of the larger world.
I was with Ted Turner when he came to see Kofi Annan - the Secretary-General of the UN - to announce his decision to put $1 billion to the service of UN projects and programs.
I've developed a huge regard for Toyota for its environmental awareness, for its immense commitment to research and development in this field, and for its leadership in developing hybrids which others are now following.
If you want to maintain a sustainable supply of fish you have to farm the fish, rather than mine them. So putting your money into fishing fleets that are going to exacerbate the problem by over-fishing is not the way to preserve the underlying asset.
In addition to this, they already have a fuel cell car on the road in Japan. It is subsidized from within the corporation because they are still at a high cost.
Inertia is a powerful force in human and political affairs.
Licences to have babies incidentally is something that I got in trouble for some years ago for suggesting even in Canada that this might be necessary at some point, at least some restriction on the right to have a child.
Nevertheless, the concept of sustainable development is now known - even amongst those who haven't accepted it - and it's recognized, debated and followed by an increasing number of businesses.
Not to say that corporations are perfect today, but even grand corporations like Dupont have made immense progress in translating some of their past environmentally damaging practices into new profit opportunities.
One of the things that I've always thought I would like to do is to develop an environmental index. Then people can measure their own environmental performance on an index as they do in other ways.
So, what we do as individuals matters. It adds up.
The Prime Minister of India, at a meeting that I co-chaired a few months ago, stated that any development that is not sustainable is not development.
The tendency is to keep doing things the way you have done them.
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