Crisis or opportunity? Oregon's environmental programs at the crossroads: a framework to decouple economic growth from environmental impacts to achieve sustainable development
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It is clear to many that Oregon’s approach to environmental management is at a crossroads. The state can continue to manage the environment one crisis at a time or, it can establish an framework which leads to agreement over what is needed to manage the environment sustainably and mobilizes, guides and integrates efforts to achieve those ends. This would help resolve today’s problems and respond to new ones before they become crisis. It would also position Oregon as a center of excellence in environmentally efficient business and community development. This document outlines the potential components of a framework to achieve the latter. This can be called a framework to place Oregon on a path towards Sustainable Development. The proposed framework has three overall components: the state would declare that achieving sustainable development is a top priority and establish clear goals and a mechanisms to mobilize, guide and integrate government, private sector and community efforts towards this end; each state agency would adopt clear goals and outcome-based strategies to align internal rules, regulations and programs and to mobilize, guide and support constituent efforts to achieve the new state sustainability goal; and ongoing private sector and community sustainability efforts would be complemented by new initiatives aimed at the common state goal of achieving sustainable development.