About this Report
Table of Contents
What have been the main drivers of environmental change in Asia and the Pacific?
Can the region’s natural resource endowment continue to support the current economic growth patterns?
- Fast economic growth is the most important driver of environmental change in Asia and the Pacific. GDP growth in this region is outstripping world GDP growth, led by developing countries.(read more)
- Despite the rapid economic growth, there are still many unmet needs. Underdeveloped infrastructure is a key development obstacle and one of the most significant poverty traps.(read more)
In the context of rapid economic growth, what are the key threats to environmental sustainability?
- Ecological footprinting shows that the Asia-Pacific is already living above its ‘environmental means’. Despite its relatively low-impact consumption patterns, its carrying capacity is probably already being exceeded. There are increasing signs that environmental sustainability is at risk.(read more)
- The focus on improving environmental performance may be distracting attention from the environmental sustainability of economic growth patterns.(read more)
- The signs of unsustainable growth – high future infrastructure costs, an increasing tendency to produce waste and continuing declines in natural capital (read more)
- The growth of pollution and resource-intensive industry (read more)
- The intensification of agriculture (read more)
- Urbanization and the spread of the global consumer society (read more)
- Increased demand for raw materials, energy and water(read more)
- Increased vulnerability to climate change and natural disasters; but climate change mitigation action is becoming more and more compatible with energy security and economic objectives. (read more)
Is declining environmental sustainability a necessary consequence of growth?
- Economic growth and environmental degradation can be de-linked by promoting more eco-efficient growth patterns. As economies grow, more eco-efficient production may be observed, but greater eco-efficiency of consumption is more difficult to achieve.(read more)
How can sustainable development be achieved in Asia and the Pacific?
- Green Growth presents a new policy focus to institutionalize more environmentally sustainable economic growth patterns. Adoption of greener growth patterns is more urgent and relevant in the context of fast-growing Asia-Pacific economies than anywhere else in the world (read more)
How is the region performing with regard to its international commitments to Millennium Development Goal 7? (read more)
What will be the key determinants of sustainable development in each subregion?