Former Prime Minister Gro Harlem Brundtland of Norway (and then special envoy for the United Nations) was invited by the UN to create and manage a “World Commission on Environment and Development (“WCED”), which over time became known as the “Brundtland Commission.” The commission gave the world a framework for moving forward on what would become known as “sustainable development.”
The commission report (in 1987) was titled, “Our Common Future,” paved the way for the world leader gathering in 1992 – the “Earth Summit.” Her work continued after the commission work concluded; she led the Norwegian government peace initiative in the Middle East, bringing the PLO’s Yasser Arafat and Israel’s Yitzak Rabin. (This led to the “Oslo Accords.”) Ms. Brundtland moved on to the World Health Organization (WHO) as Director-General.
Then it was on to be one of the UN’s Special Envoys for Climate Change. And to close comradeship with President Nelson Mandela and Bishop Desmond Tutu and other leaders as “the Elders,” bringing attention to pressing societal issues. She is a fascinating – and inspiring – woman in key global and regional leadership roles.
So what are her thoughts on the current state of sustainability? How has the concept moved forward – and after 28 years, what has the world accepted (of the thoughts of Our Common Future)? (The main message remains: Our generation has a responsibility to address the destiny of the planet.) How does she view the meetings in Paris (COP 21)?
She shares her views on these questions and on electric-powered cars and the beneficial impact on public health. How can countries encourage the adoption of EV’s? (Remember, her home country of Norway is a major oil-producing nation – pumping fossil fuel for powering of internal combustion engines.)
Thinking back to 1987 and the commission work – that is not so long ago, is it! The current generation of undergrad and grad students focused on the many dimensions of sustainable development, and after graduation moving into positions in companies, governments, civil societies, will be shaping the direction of those organizations…advancing the seminal work of the Brundtland Commission and many others inspired by the commission’s work.
Watch a 10-minute video interview of Gro Harlem Brundtland by Zachary Shahan by clicking the link below:
Interview With Gro Harlem Brundtland, Grandmother of Sustainability (Video)
(Thursday – February 11, 2016)
Source: Clean Technica – Gro Brundtland is the “grandmother of sustainability.” She is a true legend, and the roots of “sustainability” and “sustainable development” sprouted in the famous report named after her, Our Common Future, also known as the…