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The challenge of equitable and sustainable progress: scope of HDR2011Ljubjana, May 2011
Why Equity and Sustainability? – distributive justice Normative argument: “It would be a gross violation of the universalist principle if we were to be obsessed about intergenerational equity without at the same seizing the problem of intragenerational equity” (Anand and Sen, 2000) Empirical argument: “many problems of resource depletion and environmental stress arise from disparities in economic and political power. ...our inability to promote the common interest in sustainable development is often a product of the relative neglect of economic and social justice within and amongst nations”(Bruntlandt Commission, 1987) Can we identify intersections that allow for mutually supportive policies? -> Positive synergies
Importance of risk and uncertainty Conceptual and measurement debates are often conceived in terms of substitutability between natural and man-made capital However, given risk, there is uncertainty about future substitutability This favors the strong sustainability view over weak sustainability The capabilities approach is concerned with the most disadvantaged, thus calls for action to avert catastrophic risks, and mitigate/adapt
Defining sustainable human development The preservation – and whenever possible expansion – of the substantive freedoms and capabilities of people today while undertaking reasonable efforts to avoid risks that would seriously compromise the capability of future generations to have similar – or greater – freedoms.
Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia most affected, particularly by precipitation
The multidimensional poverty index (MPI)used in analysis of env deprivations of the poor
‘Environmental’ deprivations are pervasive among the MPI* poor New analysis highlights deprivations relating to dirty water, unimproved sanitation and indoor air pollution ‘Environmental’ deprivations contribute disproportionately to MPI poverty Overlap: 8 of 10 MPI poor are deprived in 2 or more ‘environmental’ indicators, 29 percent in all three indicators Deprivations are highest among MPI poor in cooking fuel across all regions, except the Arab States where lack of water is paramount Rural poor are more severely affected * Cooking fuel (dung, wood, charcoal), electricity, water supply and sanitation
‘Environmental deprivations’ among MPI poor by region
Environment threats and deprivations affect multiple aspects of wellbeing Livelihoods – Direct threat to those dependent on agriculture, forestry and fishing Health – High burden of disease from indoor & outdoor air pollution & fecal/water borne disease, risk of increase in insect-borne disease & malnutrition Education – Shocks and uncertainty, coping strategies keep children out of school; lack of electricity impedes homework Empowerment – Burden of coping strategies (wood & water, soil degradation) limits opportunities for societal participation by women Equity – women and children tend to fare worse in natural disasters , and minorities suffer disproportionally environmental ‘bads’
Rethinking our development model A clean and safe environment – a right, not a privilege 130+ constitutions address environmental norms Enforceability not always clear cut Increase right and access to information The role of the State balanced approaches - emphasize investments in non-income aspects of human development role of industrial policy in enabling development needs to be carefully considered Policies that stimulate specific economic activities Eg. policies aiming to reduce the carbon intensity of development - limiting incentives to new activities, automatic sunset provisions, clear benchmarks for success Promotion of structural change
Integrating equity concerns into environmental policy design
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