Implementing ecological approach to human settlement planning Promoting environmental measures in settlement planning
Many communities are developing or implementing environmental programmes. It is suggested that environmental concerns should also include using an ecological approach to human settlement planning approach should be included in the planning process.
Cerro Gordo is a prototype sustainable community for up to 2,500 people on 481 hectares on the shore of Dorena Lake (Oregon, USA). It was started in 1970 with the goal of creating a genuine symbiosis of village, farm and forest: understanding and reestablishing connections with nature, its human support systems, other people and oneselves through daily experience in a human-scale context. Ecosystemic planning has been used to take account of intrinsic land use suitabilities and natural limits and boundaries. The project is phased and developed slowly to allow for full participation by its inhabitants and the growth of self-supporting and self-servicing systems. Features of the community development are: mixed-use pedestrian village with cluster housing, solar design and a variety of accommodations; permanent ecological protection zones, including wildlife habitat, perpetual forestry and organic agriculture; over 400 hectares of natural commons; planned full employment through community-business partnership and privately owned businesses; regular ecological and socio-economic review processes.
1. Conservation of ecosystem structure and functioning, in order to maintain ecosystem services, should be a priority target of the ecosystem approach.
The quality of our lives is dependent upon the quality of our environment, which is dependent upon the quality of our land use. Despite all the compelling evidence and cogent arguments, both recent and historic, favouring the implementation of a more ecologically sensitive approach to land use planning, municipal planners remain frustratingly wary. It is apparent that it will take considerably more encouragement and education to win over their hearts and minds completely.
The Encyclopedia of World Problems and Human Potential is a collaboration between UIA and Mankind 2000, started in 1972. It is the result of an ambitious effort to collect and present information on the problems with which humanity is confronted, as well as the challenges such problems pose to concept formation, values and development strategies. Problems included are those identified in international periodicals but especially in the documents of some 60,000 international non-profit organizations, profiled in the Yearbook of International Organizations.
The Encyclopedia includes problems which such groups choose to perceive and act upon, whether or not their existence is denied by others claiming greater expertise. Indeed such claims and counter-claims figure in many of the problem descriptions in order to reflect the often paralyzing dynamics of international debate. In the light of the interdependence demonstrated among world problems in every sector, emphasis is placed on the need for approaches which are sufficiently complex to encompass the factions, conflicts and rival worldviews that undermine collective initiative towards a promising future.
Non-profit, apolitical, independent, and non-governmental in nature, the UIA has been a pioneer in the research, monitoring and provision of information on international organizations, international associations and their global challenges since 1907.