Evaluating sustainability criteria, application in the Assiniboine Delta Aquifer region

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McLaren, Robert
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For the last ten years, sustainable development has been discussed and debated by experts in a variety of disciplines. Although the concept and ideals of sustainable development are well understood, bridging the gap between theory and practice has been more difficult. One of the most pressing issues has been the measurement or evaluation of relative sustainability. While some methods have been proposed for incorporating sustainability considerations into the planning process, few have been tested in a practical setting that addressed the issues of data needs and feasibility. This research examined three sustainability criteria: reversibility, risk and equity in the context of groundwater use in the Assiniboine Delta Aquifer (ADA) region. The objectives of the study were to design a strategy for implementing the three sustainability criteria, to test the feasibility of the criteria, to recommend improvements to the criteria and to provide insight into the sustainability of groundwater use in the ADA region. The criteria were used to evaluate three separate policy structures that could be used to manage the aquifer. (Abstract shortened by UMI.)