Great Images for Convergence / Sustainability

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A resource bringing together the great images of sustainability that can help us to understand the concepts and themes of Convergence:

Donut Economics

"In 2009, 29 of the world's leading Earth-system scientists drew up a set of nine 'planetary boundaries': critical natural processes that we must not breach if we want to maintain Earth's stable state of the last 10,000 years. And the area within these boundaries, they said, define "a safe operating space for humanity". Environmentally safe, yes, but would it be socially just? After all, an environmentally safe space for humanity could be compatible with a multitude of human conditions, some of which may be appalling. Superimposing these social boundaries onto the planetary boundaries would define a safe and socially just operating space for humanity: no longer a circle, but a doughnut, bounded by an outer environmental ceiling and an inner social floor".

 

Planetary Boundaries 

"To avoid catastrophic environmental change humanity must stay within defined 'planetary boundaries' for a range of essential Earth-system processes, argue Johan Rockström and his co-authors in a Nature Feature. If one boundary is transgressed, then safe levels for other processes could also be under serious risk, they caution".

 

The Funnel

 "We use the funnel as a metaphor to help visualise the economic, social and environmental pressures that are growing on society as natural resources and ecosystem services diminish and the population’s number and consumption grows. Imagine looking at a giant funnel from the side. The upper wall is the availability of resources and the ability of the ecosystem to continue to provide them. The lower wall is our demand for these resources which we need to make clothes, shelter, food, transportation and other items and the ecosystems that create them. The things we need to survive - food, clean air and water, productive topsoil and others - are in decline. So is nature’s ability to regenerate them. But at the same time, our demand for these resources is growing. There are more than six billion people on the planet and the population is increasing. Our level of consumption is increasing. As our demand increases and the capacity to meet this demand declines, society moves into a narrower portion of the funnel. As the funnel narrows there are fewer options and less room to manoeuvre. Organisations that continue business-as-usual; are likely to hit the walls of the funnel, and fail". - The Natural Step

Regenerative Development: 

"Thrive Design Studio - Regenerative development presents a beautiful, applied and incredibly important philosophy from which we can draw ample inspiration from. We can look to the past to learn about the heritage of a place and how biological and cultural systems have functioned there before. We can look to the present for contemporary understanding of ecological and social sciences, as regenerative development effectively sits at the intersection of the two. And we can look to the future and presence the spirit of our places that yearn to be brought back to life. But at the heart of this message is a call to get our proverbial hands dirty. Regenerative development is deeply rooted in permaculture, which is first and foremost about working with the land. It asks us to become indigineous once again, to deepen our roots to the places where we live, and to provide more meaning and value to them". 

 

Regenerative City - Ecopolis

"Creating regenerative cities primarily means one thing: initiating comprehensive political, financial and technological strategies for an environenmentally enhancing, restorative relationship between cities and the ecosystems from which they draw resources for their sustenance. Introducing the concepts of "Agropolis", "Petropolis" and "Ecopolis"  - World Future Council brochure by Herbert Girardet explains how such a healthy relationship can be built".

Interactive Biocapacity Speedometer

 Global Footprint Network examines the percentage of biocapacity (or number of earths) humans have required over the years.