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Sustainability

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Sustainability addresses the ongoing capacity of Earth to maintain all life.

Sustainable patterns of living meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs. Actions to improve sustainability are both individual and collective endeavours shared across local and global communities. They necessitate a renewed and balanced approach to the way humans interact with each other and the environment.

Education for sustainability develops the knowledge, skills, values and world views necessary for people to act in ways that contribute to more sustainable patterns of living. It enables individuals and communities to reflect on ways of interpreting and engaging with the world.  Sustainability education is futures-oriented, focusing on protecting environments and creating a more ecologically and socially just world through informed action. Actions that support more sustainable patterns of living require consideration of environmental, social, cultural and economic systems and their interdependence.

Organising ideas

For each cross-curriculum priority, a set of organising ideas reflects the essential knowledge, understandings and skills for the priority. The organising ideas are embedded in the content descriptions and elaborations of each learning area as appropriate.

CodeOrganising ideas
Systems
OI.1 The biosphere is a dynamic system providing conditions that sustain life on Earth.
OI.2 All life forms, including human life, are connected through ecosystems on which they depend for their wellbeing and survival.
OI.3 Sustainable patterns of living rely on the interdependence of healthy social, economic and ecological systems.
World Views
OI.4 World views that recognise the dependence of living things on healthy ecosystems, and value diversity and social justice are essential for achieving sustainability.
OI.5 World views are formed by experiences at personal, local, national and global levels, and are linked to individual and community actions for sustainability.
Futures
OI.6 The sustainability of ecological, social and economic systems is achieved through informed individual and community action that values local and global equity and fairness across generations into the future. 
OI.7 Actions for a more sustainable future reflect values of care, respect and responsibility, and require us to explore and understand environments.
OI.8 Designing action for sustainability requires an evaluation of past practices, the assessment of scientific and technological developments, and balanced judgments based on projected future economic, social and environmental impacts.
OI.9 Sustainable futures result from actions designed to preserve and/or restore the quality and uniqueness of environments. 
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