Sustainable Development or Responsible Development?
What happens when we remove the word “sustainable” from the concept of “sustainable development”? Nothing!
Terrapex is an environmental company and our vision is to create a better future for all and of course we believe in sustainable development. However, it seems that the expression “sustainable development” is being interpreted as no development. The trend of “not in my backward” has progressively shifted toward “not in my country”. It seems to me the term sustainable should be replaced by the word “responsible”. Responsible development is a value added to our society, the word “sustainable” being more suitable to the situation in developing countries where the outpouring of products fabricated under high risk conditions for human health and safety, the environment and their society’s long term development, to benefit of a few. Creating products that last for a short time or even a few uses is, in other words, not sustainable.
Stop consuming these products. Canadian products are respected throughout the world as high quality and sustainable products. Yet we consider them as being too costly. How can we consider sustainable development on the one hand, while on the other hand, we are constantly searching for the least expensive, and consequently, the least sustainable option ? We quickly forget the human and monetary costs that result from the manufacture and marketing of these less expensive products and their poor quality in terms of durability. There is a price to pay.
We, Quebeckers, are the builders of this country, yet my impression is that we have reached a degree of satisfaction and comfort leading us to the idea that we no longer need to further develop our resources and abilities. If we don’t find an item here, it can be purchased elsewhere, for a better price. The aging of the Quebec population increases pressure on our health system. The taxes we pay are already the highest in North America, and they will increase. If we continue to hinder responsible development and increase taxes on the remaining industries and citizens, we will also harm the continuation and expansion of our wealth and great society.
Quebeckers are well organized, rich in brain power, ideas and innovations and sit among the world leaders of many disciplines. We must trust our entrepreneurs, our scientists and our regulators and let them work. This requires a change in mindset, that sustainable development does not mean no development. Rather, let’s talk of responsible development, as we continue to envision a better future and assert ourselves as leaders in this world and in this country.