"Sustainable development," according to the United Nations' World Commission on Environment and Development, "meets the needs of the present without compromising the needs of the future generations." It is hard to argue with the idea of sustainability when it is couched in these terms. Beyond this broad and highly idealized view of sustainable development lies a more problematic definition-one that recognizes sustainable development as a careful balancing act among issues of environmental protection, public health and safety, and sound economic development.

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Mark Finkelstein
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Finkelstein, M.
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