The Millennium Development Goals, endorsed by the United Nations General Assembly, are rooted in the concept of sustainable development. Environmental sustainability is not only acknowledged as a specific goal in its own rights, but is integral to the achievement of most of the Millennium Development Goals.
Sustainable development requires a rising average standard of living (well-being), and faster than average growth in the wellbeing of the poorest sections of society. Another way to say this is that sustainable development requires the overall stock of assets, or wealth, to increase in per capita terms.
This report examines investments in and policies for improving environmental quality and natural resources management, and documents the critical role played by these investments and policies in creating opportunities for people to lift themselves out of poverty. Its intended audience is decision-makers who require hard economic evidence to evaluate the proposition that investment in sound, equitable environmental management is an effectiveﾗindeed, an essentialﾗstrategy for reducing poverty.