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Major Projects Association Annual Conference on Embedding Sustainability and Circular Economy in Major Projects

SEP 16-17, 2019 | Global

Sustainability is now a core issue for the major projects community. The infrastructure sector must respond to pressure from governments, clients, investors and the public for projects to contribute to the triple bottom line of economic, environment and social to a greater extend. The objective of the conference was to identify how development aiders can work collaboratively to deliver a step change in the sustainability performance of our institutions and projects.


Bernard Aritua, Senior Infrastructure Specialist, shared the view of the evolvement of this theme from Mickey Mouse model to Strong Sustainability model (see image on left side).  The idea of sustainable development has been around since the 1980s but too often it has been greenwash, with tokenistic environmental and social features bolted on to projects focused on short-term economic benefit.  Nowadays, projects need to aim for strong sustainability, which means to deliver inclusive growth while respecting the fragile ecosystem of the Earth exposed by the climate and environmental crisis, and not leaving anyone behind. 


Participants from global development agencies and financiers agreed on a number of priority actions to guide and support investments to achieve stronger sustainability results globally, including stronger personal/corporate commitments, establishment of resource sharing platforms, and provision of decision-making tools, etc.