---------- Text of forwarded message ----------
Date: Thu, 6 Jan 1994 20:07:16 -0800
From: Frances Spivy-Weber <email@example.com>
Subject: PCSD 1/6
Meeting with the President's Council on Sustainable Development
representatives at the U.S. Capitol, January 6, 1994.
On the PCSD panel: Molly Harriss Olson, Director of the
PCSD; Dr. James Baker, Administrator of National Oceanic
and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA); Richard Goodstein,
Liaison William D. Ruckelshaus for Brown & Ferris
International; Keith Loughlin, White House; Frank Farkon,
Staff to the PCSD from Dow Chemical.
New staff at the PCSD: Dawn Earlson from Friends of the
Earth, Lois Morrison, Ann James from the "Rio to the
Capitols" Conference, held last May in Kentucky; Gary
Larson from the Forest Service to work on Natural
Seventy people attended and as advertised, there was
plenty of time for questions. Unfortunately there were
not many answers.
Molly Olson began the briefing saying that the six task
forces (principles, sustainable communities,
eco-efficiency, energy and transportation, natural
resources and public linkages) are on their second round
of written papers. Over 300 people have been nominated
from which a few will be invited over the next month or so
to join the Task Forces as Non-Council members. The
recommended list will be reviewed by the Chairs of the
Task Forces in Seattle, then the list will be reviewed
again by the Co-Chairs Lash and Buzelli, and then the
staff will review the list to make sure it is diverse
enough. The 24th member, nominated in August, will be
announced soon. The 25th member will represent
grassroots; interviews will take place over the next
several weeks. The Seattle meeting is important because
the Council should not have all its meetings in Washington
D.C., but it is very expensive to meet outside Washington.
Seattle was chosen because it is an innovative community.
Five of the task forces will meet (all but public
linkages). There will be roundtables with Council members
and local sustainable community experts. In addition
there will be time for public comment on the draft
principles and goals paper. There will be two site
visits: Zytec and Willapa Bay. Molly closed with a plea
to the group to recognize how important is the PCSD as a
vehicle to achieve major initiatives toward sustainable
development in a brief period of time.
Keith Loughlin underscored how important the sustainable
development concept is to this Administration. Seattle
will showcase the eco-efficiency at Zytec and natural
resource conservation at Willapa Bay, showing how the
goals of SD can be simultaneously achieved. We are
beginning to look at the community like we look at
ecosystems. We are asking how do communities provide
water, transportation, handle waste, create jobs while
protecting the natural environment. The PCSD is
particularly intriguing because of the similarity of the
PCSD goals to the those of the President's Community
Empowerment Board to implement enterprise zones. The PCSD
is also a good opportunity to reinvent government. Right
now the federal government is not well organized to
efficiently help communties. And this can be done without
new money. Eco-efficiency ties together environment and
economy. At EPA, we started using this concept in late
70s and then in the late '80s we added pollution
prevention. Sustainable agriculture is also part of this.
Now there is a new focus on industrial ecology.
Rich Goodstein has been staffing the principles, goals and
definitions task force, which the PCSD established after
its meeting last July. It was the consensus of the
Council that they needed to define where the Council was
going, set the roadmap before get there. The Task Force
agreed to accept the Bruntland Commission definition of
sustainable development. Then it began to focus on
principles. Looked at lots--international and domestic.
They established one guidepost, to keep the PCSD
principles domestic. The draft principles will be
discussed in Seattle. The co-chairs have set no
preconditions on commenting. The Task Force objective is
to get some consensus on a set of principles in Seattle,
then engage in outreach at a greater level before April
meeting. At the April meeting, the principles will be set
for next 15 months. At Seattle, the Council members will
discuss principles on Thursday and on Friday there will be
a roundtable with people from Seattle community.
Dr. James Baker spoke very rapidly about the Susutainable
Community task force. They set up five working groups
(economic development and jobs, housing, environmental
equity, transportation and energy; crime, education, and
social development) which will look at specific
demonstratoin projects. They also set up case studies on
public participation, planning and finance. There will be
a special roundtable on Thursday morning with
representatives from large and small communities in
Alaska, Montana, Idaho, Oregon, and Washington. Large and
small communities. The questions that will be asked
include, What motivates a community to pursue sustainable
development; what is your 2020 vision; what are good and
bad government policies, what are the next steps, have you
learned principles that can be applied elsewhere.
Frank Farkon is on the eco-efficiency task force, looking
at demonstraton projects--current projects, come being
developed and a few initiated by the group itself. The
Amoco project is an example of the latter. They want to
come up with national goals and recommend public policy
changes. In Seattle the task force will seek approval of
Question and Answer period.
What is happening with Congress? Ans. The PCSD is trying
to set up a congressional advisory committee, but it will
not be in place for a while. Want an avenue for input
from House and Senate. Need to know about legislation.
Will there be televised public town meetings? Ans.
Being pursued, but not sure about progress. C-span may
cover the Seattle meeting, but we will not know until late
Friday, 7 Janauary.
Every other meeting will be held outside of Washington
D.C.--but it is expensive to have meetings outside
Washington. Chatanooga, Iowa, Santa Fe are being
The opportunity is great for the PCSD to work with the
information highway, too, or at least information service
stations for those not yet ready for highway. Put your
stuff up and then listen.
Ans: SD could be a good demonstration project for the super
highway. Keep us informed. Monday, we got linked into econet,
but we don't know our address yet.
What is the status of the scoping task force on Population
and Consumption. Ans: Tim Wirth is cochair, and he will
identify for council how to work on this issue. Number of
outcomes are possible. They are assembling background
papers and see their first task to get members up to speed
on the issues. Hoping to have formal dialogue in Seattle.
Could make recommendations to council as a whole or help
other task forces incorporate pop and consumption issues.
What is best way to get info in on pop/consumption? Send
information to Liaisons of Co-chairs of Scoping Task
Force--Donna Wise at WRI, David Harwood at Department of
State--cc to PCSD staff.
Do you have a sense of where this enterprise is going?
Where do you hope to be 2-4 years from now? Ans. We are
now stepping back and looking for a vision of sustainable
development. The great diversity on the council is its
What is the decision-making process? by concensus? are
diverse. Done by consensus, if at all possible, But if
necessary, can vote. Each task force gets approval for is
work plan from Council as a whole.
Is the PCSD connected to any of the rule-making processes?
Ans., there is no direct linkage to rule-making.
The PCSD is formed to help US figure out how to do
Agenda-21. Will A-21 influence the principles? Ans.,
A-21 was reviewed, but want to have domestic focus, but
many issues are a mix of international and domestic.
One of problems in addressing SD is way all levels that
state, local, federal legislative bodies are organized.
Virtually impossible to do integrated work. Will you be
recommending a reorganization of Congress? ans:
Will you be promoting more media? Ans. we put out a
press release whenever we do anything, but not much has
happened here. When we go to Seattle and to other
communities, I expect more regional coverage.
What is your Econet address? I don't know.