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The Natural Step

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PIK Sustainable's introduction to The Natural Step Framework for Strategic Sustainable Development

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The Natural Step

  1. 1. An Introduction to The Framework for Strategic Sustainable Development Creating a Vision for Success and Building Capacity for Sustainable Management
  2. 2. “The possibility that human and other forms of life on earth will flourish forever.” What is Sustainability? - Dr. John Ehrenfeld “Reducing unsustainability, although critical, will not create sustainability.” Triple Bottom Line Cradle to Cradle Natural Capital Zero Waste Ecological Footprint Life Cycle Assessment Circular Economy Net Zero Energy Planetary Boundaries Eco-Efficiency Biomimicry Resilienc e Regenerative Economy Steady State Limits to Growth How would you define it? ▶ Triple Bottom Line? ▶ Living within ecological limits? ▶ What else?
  3. 3. What is Sustainable Development? Core concepts: ▶ Systems thinking ▶ Socio-economic justice ▶ Intergenerational responsibility ▶ Precautionary approach to uncertainty “Meeting the needs of the present generation without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.” - Dr. Gro Harlem Brundtland
  4. 4. 1.75 Earths and Counting…. Global Footprint Network:
  5. 5. Global Footprint Network: Society is Operating at an Ecological Deficit
  6. 6. Environment Society Business Nested Interdependencies
  7. 7. Sustainability Explained in 2 Minutes Produced for The Natural Step, April 2010,
  8. 8. Ecological Assessment Time What is increasing, or becoming more abundant? What is decreasing, or becoming more scarce?
  9. 9. The Funnel
  10. 10. Earth’s Ecological System
  11. 11. Human Activity & Natural Cycles
  12. 12. A buildup of substances extracted from the earth A buildup of substances produced by society Degradation by physical means Nature is not subject to: People are not subject to: Conditions that systematically undermine their capacity to meet their needs Imagine a Sustainable Society…
  13. 13. The Five Dimensions of Social Sustainability • Health • Influence • Competence • Impartiality • Meaning-Making Quality of Life Well-being Happiness
  14. 14. 1. Do not contribute to the systematic buildup in nature of substances extracted from the earth’s crust 2. Do not contribute to the systematic buildup in nature of substances produced by society 3. Do not contribute to the physical degradation and destruction of nature and natural processes 4. Do not contribute to conditions that undermine people’s capacity to meet their basic human needs The Four Sustainability Principles
  15. 15. Backcasting
  16. 16. A-B-C-D Process
  17. 17. Strategizing Sustainability with 3 Prioritizing Questions • Is this action moving you toward or away from sustainability vision? • Is this action a flexible platform toward your sustainability vision? • Will this action offer an adequate return on investment?* * Note: Though ROI (return on investment) is traditionally seen as a return on financial investment, but it can also mean a return on political, social or another type of investment.
  18. 18. Integrating the Natural Step Framework into Sustainability PlanningThe 5-Level Framework
  19. 19. TNS Case Study: Whistler 2020
  20. 20. A Related Guide for Sustainability Planning Darcy Hitchcock and Marsha Willard, The Step-by-Step Guide to Sustainability Planning, Earthscan, 2008, p. xxii 8. Build supporting management systems 7. Build supporting organizational structures 6. Build supporting communications and training systems 5. Develop an implementation strategy and identify projects 4. Identify metrics to track your progress and do reports 3. Conduct an impacts assessment to identify priority areas 2. Choose the sustainability framework to develop a vision 1. Establish the business case for pursuing sustainability 0. Determine your current stage on the sustainability journey
  21. 21. The Age of Sustainable Development ▶ The central concept of our age ▶ A method for solving global problems ▶ A framework to understand the world and ▶ Define objectives of a well- functioning society ▶ A society that delivers wellbeing for current and future generations ▶ Drastic socio-economic changes are needed ▶ Doughnut Economics integrates socio-economic development and planetary boundaries
  22. 22. Additional Resources & Contact Information TNS Canada Website TNS Case Studies Future-Fit Business Benchmark Sustainability Illustrated Videos (TNS) Circular Economy Leadership Coalition For more information, please contact: Bill Germain, Sustainable Business Strategist MAS Environmental Policy & Management