Maude Barlow of the Council of Canadians, our favourite social activist, recently put it most succinctly: "Sustainable development means improving the quality of human life within the carrying capacity of supporting ecosystems". As I write, it is hard to imagine that there is anything wrong with the world. The sun glints on the waters of Fulford Harbour, just below the window of our home on Salt Spring Island on the west coast of Canada, reflecting the blue of a clear sky. Mt. Maxwell, newly shed of snow, looms magnificently over the head of the harbour. Truly we are blessed in this place and we feel especially fortunate as the news pours in of continuing carnage in Israel and corrupt elections in Africa. But even in this island paradise, home to many prosperous people, it is easy to find signs that something is wrong. That latest snowfall came in mid-March, later than any other in memory. Across the mountains to the east, the Canadian interior has suffered its third winter of drought in as many years. Weather is changing and we are changing it, even as our leaders wrangle over the merits of the Kyoto Accord. At dinner the other night, a friend reminisced about how a few decades ago he caught 15 kg salmon here in Fulford Harbour, where none are to be found today. Few can make their living at fishing around here. And the slopes of Mt. Maxwell and the valley are scarred by the clearcut logging of the last two years, put to rest only by the expensive investments of local residents and governments in the purchase of parkland (some of it already cut). If there had been less community will - and less wealth to support it - we would have seen much of the south end of the island denuded. And who benefited? A couple of land developers and a handful of off-island loggers, who are now out of a job because of American duties imposed on our lumber exports.
The view of Mt. Maxwell inspired the title of our neighbour Robert Bateman's recent book: "Thinking Like a Mountain". Bob, an ardent conservationist as well as noted wildlife artist, was moved to express in it, as he entered his 70th year, his own "small is beautiful" philosophy. Our view of a sustainable future is very much like his: one in which all would strive to live within their ecological means. Critically, this means working to reverse the trend of market economics that so drives the social agenda of the rich Western countries and is being rapidly adopted by their Eastern counterparts. Economic growth is good only insofar as it takes place without compromising the future of our descendants. This is as true in the "Third World" as it is in the affluent countries, but it is a deep challenge to convince people who do not have enough to eat that they should not strive for the overblown riches of the G7 nations. Unfortunately, it suits the transnational corporations to nourish consumer demand wherever they find it.
In our view of the future, people will have reclaimed the agenda of their lives from the corporate empire that increasingly is filling the role of Church and State the world over. They will not have destroyed commercial enterprise but rather tempered it with an understanding of how the natural world functions and an ethical framework that respects both humanity and the global ecosystem. As we still understand our ecology in a most imperfect way and because there is little sense of responsibility in international corporate enterprise, it is a major challenge to us to learn and to change. But we will have learned as we pay attention to, and support, the voices of reason, such as ecologist David Suzuki here in Canada. We will have changed as we accepted the responsibility for the future of children and grandchildren - not just ours but those the world over. This will have happened not just because of the exercise of reason, but of something called love - a word you do not hear many politicians and CEOs using these days. Not just love of those close to us and whom we find beautiful - that is easy to exercise. But rather the love taught by Christ and the great prophets of all world religions: love that embraces the whole of our natural world and which comes of an understanding that it is God's gift for us to treasure. Utopian? Of course. But without seemingly unattainable goals - and people who believe that somehow they can be reached - we will never get there.
Pip and John Moore,
Salt Spring Island
Hello please is an essay am writing for a scholarship. Please is this a good essay? If not help me correct it or show me example:
ESSAY:Describe your vision for your country and how you hope to contribute to that vision
What do you hope will have changed in 5 - 10 years after you graduate from ASU? How do you plan to contribute? (minimum of 250 words, maximum of 750 words)
Nigeria is A country blesses with Good people and many natural resources. And we are yet to fully utilize it because of the country instability, corruption and domestic challenges. My vision for my country is for Nigeria to be one of the 20 largest economies in the world, able to consolidate its leadership role in Africa, establish itself as a significant player in the global economic and political arena and become one of the fastest ICT advancing Country in the world. For she to excel and meet the needs of her citizens. For economy of Nigeria to boom, the stock market, financial institutions and insurance companies, to report elephant profit maximization and investments of private individuals and firms recouping fast in a short period of time.
Leonard, we have our work cut out for us with your essay. It is not only highly redundant, but it also has grammatical and capitalization errors that make it difficult to read. I will proofread the essay for you. All you have to do is follow the corrections as I indicate them :-)
- The reason I advise you to delete this portion is because your vision for Nigeria is included in your 5-10 year change / vision. That is the paragraph that starts after this.
- After I graduate from ASU, I will embark upon my 5-10 year vision of changing the Nigerian economy by helping to transform it into one of the largest world economies with the currently unreliable power sector of Nigeria complete rehabilitated to provide 24 hours power for all households, factories, and offices. I will help to improve the infrastructure of Nigeria in order to boost the local economy and provide jobs to locals. I will also work with various NGO's to help rehabilitate the educational and health sector by equipping both with the latest technology and training possibilities.
- You need to work on your mention of preventing corruption in the government. It is underdeveloped. You don't have any solid suggestions about how you would go about doing this.
Let's fix these points first and then work on the latter part of the essay that details how you plan to enact all of these ideas of yours :-)
Hello. I rewrote it. Please check this out and re-correct please.
What I hope would have changed in 5 - 10 years in Nigeria after I graduate from ASU is for Nigeria economy to be booming and be among the largest economies in the world, Power sector restructured and modified to serve Nigeria citizens with 24 hours uninterrupted power supply, this will attract foreign investors to Nigeria. For Nigeria to have a clean water supply to every homes. For internet to be accessible to every Nigerian and cheap too. For Nigeria roads to free of pot holes and have a very good road network to every part of Nigeria. For Nigeria Education sector to be among the best in the world and our Universities to be among the 100 best universities in the world. For Nigeria Universities, Polytechnics, Secondary and Primary Schools to have state of the art learning facilities and technological teaching aids. For her Government to create enabling environment to enhance learning activities and improve studying culture in Nigerians. For Nigeria hospitals to have state of the art facility and use cutting edge equipment in treating her patients and have good and qualified Doctors and Nurses, For corruption to reduce in Nigeria and to be one of the fastest growing ICT driven country and ICT Hub/Market in Africa and the world at large. I plan to contribute by using Information as a driving force for this. I will organize ICT workshops and seminars to empower the youths with information and train them on various IT skills. I plan to contribute to this vision by:
After I graduate from ASU, I will embark upon my 5-10 year vision of changing the Nigerian economy by helping to transform it into one of the largest world economies with the currently unreliable power sector of Nigeria complete rehabilitated to provide 24 hours power for all households, factories, and offices. I will help to improve the infrastructure of Nigeria in order to boost the local economy and provide jobs to locals. I will also work with various NGO's to help rehabilitate the educational and health sector by equipping both with the latest technology and training possibilities. I also hope to fight corruption using technology as one of the best ways I can to eradication of corruption in Nigeria.
1) I will work with relevant government to reduce cash transactions as much as possible by making credit cards transactions as cheap as possible for merchant
2) I advocate for government transactions to be stored on a central database for Anti-corruption agencies, the citizens and other relevant government agencies have access to. This way the citizen can see how the government spends her capital and what it is used for. No room for paper financial documents that can be shredded and can be used as an evidence and proof to sue government official(s) for misconduct.
Leonard, there is still something about the essay that does not work. I think it is because you are referring to Nigeria as a person instead of a country. I would like you to try something different in approaching this essay that just might work. Instead of explaining how you view Nigeria in 5-10 years and then enumerating the steps you will be taking to correct it, talk about the things that you want to do in Nigeria to help alleviate the country's situation over 5-10 years instead. Hopefully, this method of writing will seamlessly present your vision for Nigeria and your contributions to the improvement of your country in paragraph form. I am sorry to have to ask you to constantly keep changing the content and format of your essay. These are the steps that it takes to create an essay that will eventually feel perfect enough for you to submit with your other application documents :-) I ask you to be patient as I try to guide you towards that end result :-)
Thank you very much Vangiespen. Please am really confuse about what you mean "Am referring to Nigeria as a person instead of a Country". Please could you help me highlight and correct it please. I know you can because you identified it. Please. Thank you very much. I really appreciate your help.