Sustainable development categories

There are no hard-and-fast sustainable development topics or categories. We created this matrix in 2007 to in an attempt to helpfully group SD topics by sphere - environment, society, economy - and category. We consider the first six categories as requirements for our primary needs, and the last two as requirements of our secondary needs. We welcome discussion of this matrix.

ENVIRONMENT SOCIETY ECONOMY CATEGORIES
- Environmental systems, ecosystem, biosphere
- Social systems
- Breakdown of ecosystems, shrinking biodiversity, loss of natural habitats and species
- Sustainable development policy development and principles (human response)
- Economic systems
1: Systems level
Interaction of the environment and human activity (HA)
- Air, atmosphere (nature of, quality)
- Air, atmostphere (part of ecosystem, human need for oxygen)
- Air, atmosphere pollution, toxic chemicals in the air (human impact)
- Air, atmosphere rejuvenation (human response)
- Wind power, solar energy
2: Air
- Land, coast (nature of, quality)
- Natural resources, fossil fuels (quality, quantity)
- Water (quality, quantity)
- Land, coast (part of ecosystem, human need for shelter, food, water)
- Land pollution, toxic chemicals in the soil (human impact)
- Soil erosion
- Invasive and alien species (spread by humans)
- Resource management, resource allocation
- Land rejuvenation, permaculture (human response)
- Food technology (human response)
- Water pollution, toxic chemicals in the water (human impact)
- Accessibilty of fresh drinking water, water allocation
- Water rejuvenation, cleaning (human response)
- Forestry
- Mining
- Building industry (housing)
- Agriculture, farming, and food industries
- Water industry, supply and sanitation
3: Land and water
- Sea (nature of, quality)
- Sea (part of ecosystem, human need for seafood)
- Sea pollution, toxic chemicals in the sea (human impact)
- Dwindling fish stocks
- Sea rejuvenation (human response)
- Fishing and seafood industries
4: Sea
- Climate, climate change (natural)
- Climate (human need for habitable climate)
- Climate change (human impact)
- Climate rejuvenation, conservation (human response)
5: Climate
  - Energy (human need)
- Dwindling energy sources (peak oil, reliance on fossil fuels, photo-synthetic ceiling)
- New energy sources and technology, renewable energy, reducing energy usage (human response)
- Waste (byproduct of HA, escalating production)
- Waste management, reducing waste (human response)
- Health (human need)
- Energy generation, energy industry
- Energy-efficient products (economic response)
- Waste management industry
- Health industry
6: Energy, waste, health
  - Language, identity, ethnicity, culture, religion
- Community, politics, law, ethics, world views
- Arts, entertainment, media, recreation
- Education and research
- Transport and communications
- Lifestyle, individual ecological footprint (human impact)
- Systems thinking, mindset change, lifestyle change (human response)
- Arts, entertainment, media, sports, tourism industries
- Education industry, R&D
- Transport industry, communications industry
- Eco-tourism (economic response)
7: Well-being
  - Global population growth, species ecological footprint (human impact)
- Global population management, health, infrastructure
- Global economic growth
- Globalization
- Green accounting (economic response)
8: Population
(the 'multiplier')
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