In the context of environmental changes facing the world, there’s a growing need of new visions for dealing with sustainable development issues to improve the quality of life and promote prosperity for everyone, as well as to preserve the natural resources and their sustainability for next generations. The concept of sustainable development was mostly used and became popular after the publication of the Brundtland Commission’s report (Our Common Future). The Brundtland Commission emphasized the relationship between economy and environment, using the term ‘sustainable development’.”(United Nations. 1987). The unprecedented necessity for economic growth has lead in many areas and regions to oversee the environmental and social impacts for this accelerated growth. In the previous decades, anthropogenic impacts on natural resources were less persistent and the Earth’s atmosphere, land and water could carry the pressures of human consumption and production (GEO 5). Therefore, the challenge facing decision and policy-makers in the next decades will be to develop new approaches to encourage a more sustainable, efficient, and responsible use of our natural resources. There is growing acknowledgment of the importance of the environment for human development and quality of life (World Bank 2008). Accordingly, economic policies are being utilized for environmental conservation and the advancement of more efficient use of our resources. The on-going debate of strong and weak sustainability have strongly occurred within the theoretical debate on the two contrasting paradigms of sustainable development while both concepts are arguing that they can provide “better living” for human kind. Sustainable Development Goal 12 stresses on ensuring sustainable consumption and production patterns so by 2030, achieving the sustainable management and efficient use of natural resources . There is an urgent global necessity to inspire more sustainable patterns of consumption and production that can bring higher form of quality of life with the least environmental impacts.
According to the Ecological Footprint Network, the humankind is currently consuming the equivalent of 1.7 Earths to afford the resources we use. Accordingly, the Earth needs one year and six months to redevelop what the humans have used in a year. This highlights the fact that we use ecological resources and services more than what nature can reproduce.
The concept of eco-efficiency was initially used in 1970s as the concept of “environmental efficiency”. Later during the 1990s, eco-efficiency was presented as a “business link to sustainable development”. The term was used afterwards by the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) particularly within the business sector domain in the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) in 1992.
In the light of the adoption of sustainable development goals 2030 in the united nations summit that was held in New York city in 2015, and adopting the New Urban Agenda in Quito 2016 at the global level, sustainable development needs new policies and different partnerships and innovations to deal with the challenges facing our planet and achieve the three pillars of social progress, economic development and the balanced protection of environment. Referring to the Arab Strategy for Housing and Sustainable Urban Development that was adopted by the Arab countries in the Arab summit in Nouakchott in 2016, environmental sustainability of cities is a priority for the Arab region.
In the framework of the scientific role of the higher institute of Engineering in Elshorouk city in Egypt related to the aspects of sustainable development with all its departments, and believing the importance of scientific research that is based on proofs and its role in finding new visions to help executive authorities and concerned organizations in facing problems and challenges of sustainable development specially those related to environmental aspect through different partnerships. Based on that, the institute received the approval of the ministry of higher education and scientific research on holding the institute’s first international conference.
Due to the role of the league of Arab States, the concerned United Nations organizations in putting the executive framework for the environmental aspect for plan 2030 for sustainable development and the major role of the Centre for Environment & Development for the Arab Region and Europe in the assessment of the national, regional and global environment, and the importance of their role in making partnerships between scientific organizations and concerned stakeholders. The higher institute of engineering in El Shorouk city is intending to hold and organize its first international conference on Sustainability: Environmental Efficiency for a Better Quality of Life under the auspices of the League of Arab States, United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat), the Arab Urban Development Institute (AUDI) and the Centre for Environment & Development for the Arab Region and Europe (CEDARE) during the period 13-15 December 2018.
Elshorouk Academy is pleased to invite you to this international conference organized in partnership with The Ministry of Higher Education, The League of Arab States, The United Nations Human Settlements Programme, The Arab Urban Development Institute, and Centre for Environment & Development for the Arab Region and Europe.
-The partners in organizing the conference with the Higher Institute of Engineering- Arab Republic of Egypt:
* League of Arab States (Economic Sector/ Environment, Housing and Water Resources Management).
* United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat) Regional Office for Arab states.
* The Arab Urban Development Institute (AUDI).
*Centre for Environment & Development for the Arab Region and Europe – CEDARE
– In coordination with some national authorities in the Arab Republic of Egypt:
* Ministry of higher education and scientific research.
* Ministry of environmental affairs.
* Ministry of electricity and energy.
* Ministry of housing, utilities, and urban communities.