Sustainability Principles

The following principles underlie our stance on sustainability and inform what we believe to be right- so that we know from where we are coming and where we aim to head.


1. We respect the Earth and its life, both for its intrinsic value and for present and future generations.
2. We assert that justice is needed both for the human and non-human world, and that both are interdependent.
3. We accept that we contribute to environmental problems, and accordingly we will seek solutions.
4. We understand that the pressures on the environment will increase in coming years unless human attitudes and actions change.

Ecological Footprint

5. We know that all life on Earth depends on nature and the 'ecosystem services' it provides.
6. We believe that ecosystem services (i.e. benefits nature provides to human society - in both rural and urban settings - including: purification of air and water; mitigation of floods and droughts; detoxification and decomposition of wastes; generation and renewal of soil and soil fertility; pollination of crops and natural vegetation; control of potential agricultural pests; dispersal of seeds; maintenance of biodiversity; protection from solar ultraviolet rays; moderation of urban microclimate e.g. heat island effect; support for diverse human cultures; and, aesthetic and intellectual stimulation) should cease to be perceived as free and limitless.  Their full value, and the costs incurred by damaging them, should be taken into account.
7. We seek to help protect and restore the Earth's ecological integrity, biological diversity and natural processes.
8.  We promote the study and understanding of ecological sustainability and the sharing of knowledge gained.
9. We uphold the principles intra- and inter-generational equity, of fairness of how resources are distributed within this generation and between this and future generations.
10. We adopt the precautionary principle, so that those proposing development will need to show their actions are without significant harm to the environment, rather than the community needing to demonstrate absolute proof of cause.

Climate Change

11.  We act on the premise that there is still time to avoid the worst impacts of climate change through taking action now -  building resilience and adaptive capacity.

Economic and Social

12. We recognize that sustainability will happen faster if local communities become champions of sustainability, share the benefits and are involved in the decisions affecting sustainability.
13. We strive to work together will individuals, communities, business and sections of local government to reach sustainability.

(Adapted' from UN Millenium Assessment; Stern Review; 'Our Common Future)