「持続的な発展」とは: 石油ピーク後も発展、成長は可能なのか?

石油価格がバレル90ドルを越した。だが依然、それが地球の限界のためとは思わない人が殆んどですが、もう石油ピークは来ている流行の「持続的発展:Sustainable Development」も考え直す必要があるのでしょう。これは本来「持続と発展」を結んだ反語で、有限地球で無限成長はありえないが、この「輸入語」は今大流行、独り歩きする、殆ど議論されずに。いまでは漫画のタイトルのようなサステナすらある。

そこで長く読まれている、ある論文を紹介します。題は [Reflections on Sustainability, Population Growth, and the Environment:1994~] 、著者はコロラド大学のA. Bartlett。この大学には[Spaceship Earth]で知られるK.Bouldingなども。
Bartlettは[Sustainable]という言葉は、有名な「成長の限界:The Limit to Growth,1972」が出された後、この「Limit」を嫌った人々が編みだした、本来農業、林業で使われてきた「Sustained Yield」が転用された、と述べています。
同じく日本に、批判なしに輸入された著名な「Our Common Future:Bruntland report 1987」も「持続可能な経済成長の時代・・・」などと、各所で論旨が曖昧であると指摘します。

司馬遼太郎は「日本人は、いつも思想はそとからくるものだ、とおもっている」(この国のかたち)と述べていますが、どうやらそのようです。21世紀に入って、人間の生存基盤が劣化し、日本社会も至る所で綻び、限界が見えて来ました。このような時、オーム返しのように、持続的発展、頑張ろうでは、いずれ大変なことになるのでは。 決して新しくはない本論文から、アカデミズム、大学のあるべき姿を改めて教えられるようです。



REFLECTIONS ON SUSTAINABILITY, POPULATION GROWTH, AND THE ENVIRONMENT - REVISITED

Albert A. Bartlett,
Department of Physics, University of Colorado,Boulder, 80309-0390
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
This is a revised version ( January 1998 ) of the paper
that was first published in
Population & Environment, Vol. 16, No. 1, September 1994, pp. 5-35

The revised version was published in the
Renewable Resources Journal, Vol. 15, No. 4, Winter 1997 - 98, Pgs. 6 - 23
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
INTRODUCTION TO THE 1998 REVISION
In the period since this paper was first published ( Bartlett 1994 ), reprints have been widely distributed. Since then the author has received no communications suggesting that this paper contained errors. This could indicate that either readers have found the paper to be reasonable, or that they believe it is so completely wrong as to be unworthy of criticism.

The main message of the paper is contained in the first two Laws of Sustainability, which point out that in any society, population growth cannot be sustained, and that the larger the population, the more difficult it will be for the society to achieve sustainability.

The Brundtland Report ( Brundtland 1987 ) is, in 1998, more than a decade old. The definition of sustainability given in that report remains the definition that is frequently cited by persons writing and speaking of sustainability.

Many parts of the original paper have been revised and updated, but the Laws, Hypotheses, Observations and Predictions relating to sustainability have had only minor revisions and additions.

ABSTRACT
The related terms, "sustainable" and "sustainability" are popularly used to describe a wide variety of activities which are generally ecologically laudable but which may not be sustainable. An examination of major reports reveals contradictory uses of the terms. An attempt is made here to give a firm and unambiguous definition to the concept of sustainability and to translate the definition into a series of laws and hypotheses which, it is hoped, will clarify the implications of the use of the concept of sustainability. These are followed by a series of observations and predictions that relate to "sustainability." The laws should enable one to read the many publications on sustainability and help one to decide whether the publications are seeking to illuminate or to obfuscate.

INTRODUCTION
In the 1980s it became apparent to thoughtful individuals that populations, poverty, environmental degradation, and resource shortages were increasing at a rate that could not long be continued. Perhaps most prominent among the publications that identified these problems in hard quantitative terms and then provided extrapolations into the future, was the book Limits to Growth ( Meadows, et.al. 1972 ) which simultaneously evoked admiration and consternation. The consternation came from traditional "Growth is Good" groups all over the world. Their rush to rebuttal was immediate and urgent, prompted perhaps by the thought that the message of Limits was too terrible to be true. ( Cole, et. al. 1973 ) As the message of Limits faded, the concept of limits became an increasing reality with which people had to deal. Perhaps, as an attempt to offset or deflect the message of Limits, the word "sustainable" began to appear as an adjective that modified common terms. It was drawn from the concept of "sustained yield" which is used to describe agriculture and forestry when these enterprises are conducted in such a way that they could be continued indefinitely, i.e., their yield could be sustained. The introduction of the word "sustainable" provided comfort and reassurance to those who may momentarily have wondered if possibly there were limits. So the word was soon applied in many areas, and with less precise meaning, so that for example, with little visible change, "development" became "sustainable development," etc. One would see political leaders using the term "sustainable" to describe their goals as they worked hard to create more jobs, to increase population, and to increase rates of consumption of energy and resources. In the manner of Alice in Wonderland, and without regard for accuracy or consistency, "sustainability" seems to have been redefined flexibly to suit a variety of wishes and conveniences.

THE MEANING OF SUSTAINABILITY
First, we must accept the idea that "sustainable" has to mean "for an unspecified long period of time."

Second, we must acknowledge the mathematical fact that steady growth ( a fixed percent per year ) gives very large numbers in modest periods of time. For example, a population of 10,000 people growing at 7 % per year will become a population of 10,000,000 people in just 100 years. ( Bartlett 1978 )

From these two statements we can see that the term "sustainable growth" implies "increasing endlessly," which means that the growing quantity will tend to become infinite in size. The finite size of resources, ecosystems, the environment, and the Earth, lead one to the most fundamental truth of sustainability:

When applied to material things, the term "sustainable growth" is an oxymoron.

( One can have sustainable growth of non-material things such as inflation. )

Daly has pointed out that "sustainable development" may be possible if materials are recycled to the maximum degree possible, and if one does not have growth in the annual material throughput of the economy. ( Daly 1994 )

THE USE OF THE TERM "SUSTAINABLE"
A sincere concern for the future is certainly the factor that motivates many who make frequent use of the word, "sustainable." But there are cases where one suspects that the word is used carelessly, perhaps as though the belief exists that the frequent use of the adjective "sustainable" is all that is needed to create a sustainable society.

"Sustainability" has become big-time. University centers and professional organizations have sprung up using the word "sustainable" as a prominent part of their names. Politicians have gotten into the act. For example, a governor recently appointed a state advisory committee on global warming. The charge to the committee was not to see what the state could do to reduce its contribution to global warming, but rather the committee was to work to attract to the state, companies and research grants dealing with the topic of global warming. The governor’s charge has the effect of increasing the state’s production of greenhouse gases ( a move away from sustainability ) and thus increasing the state’s contribution to global warming. In some cases, these big-time operations may be illustrative of what might be called the "Willie Sutton school of research management." ( Sutton )

For many years, studies had been conducted on ways of improving the efficiency with which energy is used in our society. These studies have been given new luster by referring to them now as studies in the "sustainable use of energy."

The term "sustainable growth" is used by our political leaders even though the term is clearly an oxymoron. In a recent report from the Environmental Protection Agency we read that:

President Clinton and Vice President Gore wrote in Putting People First,

"We will renew America's commitment to leave our children a better nation - - a nation whose air, water, and land are unspoiled, whose natural beauty is undimmed, and whose leadership for sustainable global growth is unsurpassed." ( EPA 1993 )

We even find a scientist writing about "sustainable growth:"

...the discussions have centered around the factors that will determine [ a ] level of sustainable growth of agricultural production. ( Abelson 1990 )

And so we have a spectrum of uses of the term "sustainable." At one end of the spectrum, the term is used with precision by people who are introducing new concepts as a consequence of thinking profoundly about the long-term future of the human race. In the middle of the spectrum, the term is simply added as a modifier to the names and titles of very beneficial studies in efficiency, etc. that have been in progress for years. Near the other end of the spectrum, the term is used as a placebo. In some cases the term may be used mindlessly ( or possibly with the intent to deceive ) in order to try to shed a favorable light on continuing activities that may or may not be capable of continuing for long periods of time. At the very far end of the spectrum, we see the term used in a way that is oxymoronic.

This wide spectrum of uses is a source of confusion, because people can ask, "Just exactly what is meant when the word 'sustainable' is used?" Is the use of the word "sustainable" sufficient to identify the user as one who is widely literate, numerate, and ecolate, in matters relating to the long-range problems of the human race? Unfortunately, the answer seems to be "No."

Let us examine the use of the term "sustainable" in some major environmental reports. 以下省略
[PR]
by tikyuu_2006 | 2007-10-27 09:02 | これからの日本
<< 朝日新聞の「原油高騰」特集記事... 指数関数的成長の脅威:経済成長... >>