Table of Contents | Definition and Statement | Introduction
We Believe Statement
There are certain beliefs that we as Council members share that
underlie all of our agreements. We believe:
- To achieve our vision of sustainable development, some things must
grow--jobs, productivity, wages, capital and savings, profits,
information, knowledge, and education--and others--pollution, waste,
and poverty--must not.
- Change is inevitable and necessary for the sake of future
generations and for ourselves. We can choose a course for change that
will lead to the mutually reinforcing goals of economic growth,
environmental protection, and social equity.
- Steady progress in reducing disparities in education, opportunity, and
environmental risk within society is essential to economic growth,
environmental health, and social justice.
- The United States made great progress in protecting the environment
in the last 25 years, and must continue to make progress in the next
25 years. We can achieve that goal because market incentives and the
power of consumers can lead to significant improvements in environmental
performance at less cost.
- Economic growth based on technological innovation, improved
efficiency, and expanding global markets is essential for progress
toward greater prosperity, equity, and environmental quality.
- Environmental regulations have improved and must continue to improve
the lives of all Americans. Basic standards of performance that are
clear, fair, and consistently enforced remain necessary to protect that
progress. The current regulatory system should be improved to deliver
required results at lower costs. In addition, the system should provide
enhanced flexibility in return for superior environmental performance.
- Environmental progress will depend on individual, institutional, and
corporate responsibility, commitment, and stewardship.
- We need a new collaborative decision process that leads to better
decisions; more rapid change; and more sensible use of human, natural,
and financial resources in achieving our goals.
- The nation must strengthen its communities and enhance their role in
decisions about environment, equity, natural resources, and economic
progress so that the individuals and institutions most immediately affected
can join with others in the decision process.
- Economic growth, environmental protection, and social equity are linked. We
need to develop integrated policies to achieve these national goals.
- The United States should have policies and programs that contribute to
stabilizing global human population; this objective is critical if we
hope to have the resources needed to ensure a high quality of life for
- Even in the face of scientific uncertainty, society should take reasonable
actions to avert risks where the potential harm to human health or the
environment is thought to be serious or irreparable.
- Steady advances in science and technology are essential to help
improve economic efficiency, protect and restore natural systems, and
modify consumption patterns.
- A growing economy and healthy environment are essential to national
and global security.
- A knowledgeable public, the free flow of information, and
opportunities for review and redress are critically important to open,
equitable, and effective decisionmaking.
- Citizens must have access to high-quality and lifelong formal and nonformal
education that enables them to understand the interdependence of
economic prosperity, environmental quality, and social equity--and
prepares them to take actions that support all three.