Washington, DC--Bill Clinton formally accepted the final report, Thurs Mar 7, from the President's Council on Sustainable Development, an advisory group which was established to outline a new direction in environmental policy. The President observed in a press release that Council members "have demonstrated that when business, environmentalists, and government work together in good faith we can pursue simultaneously the goals of economic prosperity, social equity, and environmental quality," the main themes of Sustainable Development adopted by the Council.
The President stated "This report will make a major contribution to the challenge I set forth: to enable all our people to make the most of their own lives -- with stronger families, more educational opportunities, economic security, safer streets, a cleaner environment in a safer world."
A common set of goals emerged from the Council's vision. These goals express in concrete terms the elements of sustainability. They include:
The Council emphasized that the goals are "truly interdependent and flow from the Council's understanding that it is essential to seek economic prosperity, environmental protection, and social equity together."
The Council's report also states that "baseline information and indicators must be created" in order to measure the country's progress in achieving each sustainability goal. The Council contends the "current indicators of economic health -for example, gross domestic product -- are incomplete because they fail to include many critical measures, such as natural resource depletion." The Council recommends that specific "new indicators be established that, taken together, would more accurately measure the nation's prosperity."
The President also asked the Council to continue its work "in order to begin implementing some of its recommendations. I hope Jonathan Lash and David Buzzelli will continue to serve as co-chairs through December." The President also asked Vice President Gore to lead efforts within the Administration, and called on White House offices and federal agencies to support the U.S. Conference of Mayors and the National Association of Counties in establishing a new Joint Center on Sustainable Communities. It is intended that the new partnership will work to implement the recommendations in the PCSD report in communities across the nation.
The complete report of the President's Council on Sustainable Development is available in electronic format at: http://www.whitehouse.gov/pcsd. Parts of the report are available at Fins Information Age Library [Fins-SD-13,14].
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