Sustainable Development

Defined as an organised approach towards the economic growth of a country, sustainable development primarily focuses on ensuring a quality environment for the generations to follow. Vitally, sustainable development definition embodies the maintenance, as well as development of the Earth’s environment while working towards economic expansion.

Economic development often leads to environmental crises including pollution of air, soil, water, degradation and erosion of soil, loss of greenery due to deforestation, and other related issues. Consequently, sustainable development has become a vital discourse for the preservation of this world.

Scope of Sustainable Development

To understand the concept of sustainable development in its entirety, it is imperative to begin with its scope. Sustainable development broadly focuses on the following, which encompasses underlying objectives like the use of various resources, preservation, identification of sustainable sources, sustainable usage, etc.

  • Planning of economic growth to ensure least environmental impact.

  • Meeting current economic needs without compromising global environmental conditions for the generations to follow.

However, in its entirety, scope of sustainable development definition can also be said to encompass the need to better this earth’s environment for its prolonged sustenance. 

What are the Features of Sustainable Development?

To fulfill the scope and objectives of sustainable development, these features discussed below must be implemented while planning economic development. Essentially, these are the defining characteristics of sustainable development.

  • Minimising the release of greenhouse gases which directly contribute towards global warming and air pollution.

  • Emphasis on eco-friendly building and developmental practices like green architecture.

  • Emphasis and implementation of renewable energy sources like the Sun, wind, water, etc.

  • Preservation of natural resources while respecting and protecting natural habitats of life forms and organisms.

  • Containing the rate of consumption from surpassing that of production of renewable sources, as well as that of salvation.

  • Promoting environment-friendly and biodegradable products, while also making sustainable planning for replacement or replenishment of resource usage.

Sustainable Development Examples

Listed below are some sustainable development examples, few of which do not just have minimal effect on the environment, but are also economical over an extended period of usage.

  • Hydro energy as used in turbines.

  • Wind energy as often employed in wind mills.

  • Solar energy which is finding wider implementation with innovations in solar cells and allied technologies.

  • Efficient and recycled use of water.

  • Green architecture and other sustainable constructions.

  • Crop rotation and similar agricultural methods.

  • Maintenance and growth of sustainable green spaces.

Importance of Sustainable Development: Battling Environmental Crisis

Importance of sustainable development lies in its attempt to battle the environmental crisis which can be traced to unchallenged economic growth. Environmental crisis refers to a situation where nature is unable to sustain life forms or perform basic functions which are essential for the sustenance of life.

As per sustainable development definition, it attempts to contain resource extraction so that it does not exceed resource generation rates. Furthermore, it also tries to restrict waste generation to ensure that it remains below natural absorption capacities of the environment.

What are the Reasons Leading to the Environmental Crisis?

Understandably, noting the reasons leading to environmental crisis is vital in formulating a sustainable development project. Some of these reasons are discussed below in detail.

  1. Continuous Growth of Economic Activities: It has a two-pronged effect on this planet’s environment. While on one hand, there is greater consumption of natural resources, on the other this is also accompanied with greater volume of waste. Consequently, taming this issue can reduce depletion along with increased processing of waste materials.


  1. Increasing Rate of Population Growth: Rise in population leads to higher use of natural resources for their sustenance. It includes natural resources like oxygen, water, etc. along with artificial products which are also dependent on environmental resources. Another common issue with an ever-increasing population is that of misuse of these natural resources.


  1. Fast-paced Urbanisation: Economic and industrial development leads to fast-paced urbanisation, which often compels large populaces to relocate to urban spaces. This often leads to excess burden on existing infrastructures. Furthermore, such populace is often forced to relocate to slum areas that are congested and unhealthy. 


  1. Industrialisation: Industrialisation has had a rippling effect on this planet’s environment in one of the most drastic fashions. It is responsible for numerous environmental issues, among which foremost is the depletion of resources along with deforestation. Additionally, industrial waste often contains toxic materials. These, in turn, have also been greatly responsible for pollution with effects like water contamination, air pollution and even noise pollution.


  1. Reduction in Greenery: Deforestation to support economic development has been rampant on this planet for decades now. It has led to unparalleled reduction of greenery on the face of this planet which has led to environmental changes and degradations. Among its major effects, the most prominent has been global warming since purification of greenhouse gases has been hindered with deforestation.


  1. Rising Use of Chemical and Artificial Products: Use of chemicals like pesticides, chemically developed fertilisers, etc., has led to a poisonous effect on the crops. While a number of crops have been found to contain traces of these chemicals, these have also directly led to the development of health issues for farmers and other users. This too has adverse effects on this planet’s environment, including soil contamination and other issues.

Subsequently, the nature and scope of sustainable development primarily focuses to curb these issues which are a major drain on the environmental conditions. As students of commerce, it is vital to keep these reasons in mind while planning for economic development.

To understand these in greater detail along with allied concepts, visit the official Vedantu website.

FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

1. What is Sustainable Development?

Economic developments, while keeping in mind their environmental impact and minimising it accordingly, comprises the sustainable development definition. It looks to preserve the environment and natural resources of this planet for future generations.

2. Mention a Few Types of Sustainable Development Strategies.

Some of the most effective and widely used sustainable development strategies can be using water, air and solar power to produce electricity, recycled use of water, environment-friendly architectures, etc. Sustainable agricultural methods like crop rotation, creation and maintenance of green spaces can also be considered as sustainable development strategies.