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In the recent past sustainability and the environmental management of aquaculture programmes have become deciding factors in aquaculture development in both developing and developed countries. Although autopollu-tionary effects of aquaculture activities were not ignored, the total amount of waste discharged from aquatic farms, and its impact on development programmes were seldom recognised, particularly from the sustainability point of view.
Sustainability and environmental management
In the past the focus of attention in fisheries and aquaculture management has been on increasing yield by intensification of capture and culture practices, with a view to short-term economic viability. The concept of sustainability and environmental management became significant considerations as a result of discussions at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro in 1992 (UNCED, 1992).
The Bruntland Commission (the World Commission on Environment and Development) in its report on Our Common Future defines sustainable development as that which meets the needs of the present without compromising the capacity of future generations to meet their own needs (WCED, 1987). To provide an operational perspective, sustainable development has been defined by FAO/Netherlands (1991) as the management and conservation of the natural resource base and the orientation of technological and institutional change insuch a manner as to ensure the attainment and continued satisfaction of human needs for present and future generations. Such sustainable development (in agriculture, forestry and fisheries sectors) conserves land, water, plant and animal resources and is environmentally non-degrading, technically appropriate, economically viable and socially acceptable.
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