Council, 22 July 1999.

  1. That the Council recognise the need to progressively implement appropriate changes to progress towards long-term economic, environmental and social sustainability.
  2. That the Council adopt the Natural Step (see Table 1) as a method to guide an assessment of the sustainability of activities in the City and a framework to help align efforts, in Council operations and in the business and community sectors, to improve the sustainability of Christchurch.

Table 1: Conditions for Sustainability

In order for a society to be sustainable, nature's functions and diversity must...


1. ...not be subjected to increasing concentrations of substances extracted from the earth's crust;

Leave it in the earth's crust

2. ...not be subjected to increasing concentrations of substances produced by society;

If you make something new (eg toxic) you break it down too;

3. ...not be impoverished by over-harvesting or other forms of ecosystem manipulation; and

Preserve biodiversity, we need it;

4. Resources must be used fairly and efficiently in order to meet basic human needs world wide

Treat people well, be fair, efficient and share.