Learn the truth about sustainable development
Published in The Gainesville Sun  June 6, 1997
June 3,1997

Editor, Sun: 

The Guest Column, by Warren Nielsen, entitled "In the spirit of sustainability", (May 31, 1997), attempted to present a warm and fuzzy picture of the sustainable development concept. Mr. Nielsen stated that: " A loosely organized assembly of local citizens with widely diverse backgrounds drafted a definition of sustainable development in the early fall of 1996". Why waste time when the United Nations Council on Sustainable Development already published the definition in the Global Biodiversity Assessment (1995), on page 1118, as "development that meets the needs and aspirations of the current generation without compromising the ability to meet those of future generations". The President's Council on Sustainable Development established in 1993 by Presidential Executive Order #12852, adopted the definition of "Sustainable Development" drafted by The World Commission on Environment and Development in Our Common Future(1987), as "... to meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs". (see Sustainable America: A New Consensus, Feb. 1996). 

Sustainable Alachua County is not "a citizens' movement" in the sense of a grass roots movement, but has been actively promoted by the United Nations in Agenda 21, and the Global Biodversity Treaty which was presented at Earth Summit II, held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in 1992. The concept of sustainable development and sustainable communities is being implemented in every country of Earth as part of a global plan. If you want to have some idea of what is not sustainable, then heed the words of Maurice Strong, Secretary-General of Earth Summit II, who said that industrialized countries have: 

    " developed and benefited from the unsustainable patterns of production and consumption which have produced our peasant dilemma. It is clear that current lifestyles and consumption patterns of  the affluent middle class -- involve high meat intake, consumption of large amounts of frozen and convenience foods, use of fossil fuels, appliances, home and work-place air conditioning, and suburban housing - are not sustainable ... The concept of national sovereignty has been an immutable, indeed sacred, principle of international relations. It is a principle which will yield only slowly and reluctantly to the new imperatives of global environmental cooperation. What is need is recognition of the reality that in so many fields... is simply not feasible for sovereignty of be exercised unilaterally by individual nation-states, however powerful "
Sustainable development mandates the formation of a "partnership" between federal, state, local government, and businesses, with support and participation of the people.  It is one of the new age plans to give the federal government even more control of our daily lives, than it has already. Before the people of Alachua County buy into the sustainable development and sustainable community concept, it is highly advisable to ask many pertinent questions of  those who act as sustainable cheerleaders. Get copies of Agenda 21 (United Nations), Global Biodiversity Assessment (United Nations), Habitat II (United Nations),  Saving Nature's Legacy (Reed F. Noss and Allen Y. Cooperrider), Our Global Neighborhood (UN Commission on Global Governance), and Sustainable America: A New Consensus, and Population and Consumption Task Force Report ( The President's Council on Sustainable Development). 

Our future is too important to accept sustainable development in our lives without knowing the whole truth. 

Milton H. Baxley II
Gainesville, Florida

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Revised August 28 , 1997