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To what extent can the principle of sustainability guide land use policy development

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To what extent can the principle of sustainability guide land use policy development? The idea of developing in such a way that the present can meet their needs without future generations needs being compromised is not a new one. It has been practiced and continues to be practiced by many groups of people across the world. For example, this principle is embedded in Aboriginal beliefs that they come from the land, and must return to the land and so must be custodians to the land. The Brundtland Commission, chaired by the Norwegian prime minister, brought the concept to the foreground where the famous definition of sustainability was given. This essay will discuss the idea of sustainability, how the principle first emerged in policy, and what potential it has in the future development of land use policy. As the basis of all human activity, land is important in achieving sustainability and as such it is essential to focus on the planning and regulation of land use change. However, in order for this to take place the objectives of a policy must be certain before it can be implemented. Some people would argue that there is no need for government as market forces will lead to the best outcome in terms of total welfare. This has led to sustainability as a principle being described as a 'problem'1 which conflicts with such short term purely economic views. ...read more.


Since then the emphasis on 'sustainability' in all areas of government policy has been increased. One aspect of the growing interest in land use policy as an instrument of sustainable development has been the 'expanding range of social, ecological and political objectives that planning systems are deemed be capable of promoting'4. There are a number of environmental issues which the land planning system has been expected to be engaged in. For example by taking account of air pollution concerns when refusing or accepting planning applications. Also, the planning system has been urged to take the role of promoting the sustainable use of renewable and non-renewable resources through appropriate policies and design. The encouragement of the remediation and reuse of derelict or contaminated brownfield sites while preserving undeveloped area. Also, concepts of 'environmental capital' may have led to the expectation that planning will link development with conservation. The principle of sustainability can only guide land use policy development if it is accepted and implemented by those responsible for policy. This is not however, an easy task which the difficulties in achieving a balance between social, economic and environmental concerns. Also, sustainability requires the need for an appreciation of the long term objectives rather than on the immediate gain from current use of resources. In conclusion, the recognition of the principle of sustainability on a global scale has been a positive step, however, this in itself will not lead to the aim of allowing future generations to meet their own needs as well as our own. ...read more.


rhetorical level at least- more than half of the structure plans prepared by counties in eng;and and walses included some concepts of sustainable development in a published document. Counsell 1998- land use planning performed strongly on plicy areas of wildlife and copuntryside, land use, built environment, but wek on pollution, natural resource management and socio-economics aspects of sustainability. - show relatively easy to make generalised committments such as minimising Earth's climate, or promotin the effe use of energy resources- yet much more difficult to translate these into policy measures. in pragmatic terms, plannin authorities have limited resources, time and expertise to pursue and implement an ever-expanding array of objectives addressing global pollution and the management of resources. so where rhetoric been impressive- the depth, breadth and nature of committment have varied a great deal. Planning authorites were dealing with many other pressures while trying to come with terms of sustainability- pressures to speed up the planning process; reductions in public spending; privatisation of many services; grwoing significance of regional agenda. - usual forces of insuffieictnt knowledge, inertia and competing demands explain implementation defecit- but also deeper than this and more complex. go back to interpretations of sustainability-and its challenges to market led development and cometitiveness. 1 In 'Sustainability and Policy' (COMMON, 1995) 2 limits to growth 3 UK Government 1994a: 221 4 Quote from 'Land and Limits' (OWENS, S. & COWELL, R. 2002) ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

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