Equity and human rights are important in sustainable development thinking, Leida Rijnhout, a green movement activist from the Netherlands said in a KW interview.

ANPED-Northern Alliance for Sustainability headed by Leida Rijnhout was one of three major groups involved in the organization of the Rio +20 Conference, held in Rio de Janiero.

The purpose of this conference was to re-implement and revitalize the Agenda 21 Conference of 1991, considered the Bible of sustainable development. Asked why were western nations against the green movement and whether the rest of the world accomplish its goal of sustainable development without the US and so-called “bread countries” like India and China?

These countries’ governments, the activist said, want to see the biggest growth. “Of course they notice their environment is becoming more damaged with all of the pollutants coming in and nobody practicing any modern techniques to stall this defective process, but everyone is also stalling practical implementation of sustainability because of this financial crisis. Everybody is more concerned about the economy rather than that of their environment, which doesn’t make a whole lot of sense because three percent of the world’s entire economy is so-called ‘real economy’ represented by physical purchases,” she argued.

The utopia for sustainable development, in her opinion, is the ideal solution.

“The ideal is to put our economy back within our ecological limits. It means we have only one planet, so we cannot abuse it until its nothing. We have to stop eating our ecological capital for a long term survival of our nature, planet, and biodiversity… I think we have to use fewer natural resources in the north, because this is an area of the world that is very developed. We have other means of getting the supplies we need from our own lands, and for example, people also have the right to grow,” Leida Rijnhout concluded.