Sustainability is not a novel concept. Throughout history we have curiously endeavored to understand more about our reciprocal relationship with the natural environment and the forces that command it.
"Lost time is never found again." -Benjamin Franklin
"We must use time wisely and forever realize that the time is always ripe to do right." -Nelson Mandela
"Time is the wisest counselor of all." -Pericles
"Time is what we want most, but what we use worst." -William Penn
“You may delay, but time will not.” -Benjamin Franklin
"It’s not that we have little time, but more that we waste a good deal of it." -Seneca
Mechanization, coal, steam and water power.
Mass production and electricity.
Electronic and IT systems, automation.
Cyber physical systems.
The First Industrial Revolution was spurred and marked by the transition to new manufacturing processes using water and steam, powered by coal. James Watt's improved steam engine technology helped to power the Industrial Revolution. Before steam power, most factories and mills were powered by water, wind, horse, or man. Steam power allowed for factories to be located anywhere. It also provided reliable power and could be used to power large machines. Demands for Watt's engine came quickly from paper mills, flour mills, cotton mills, iron mills, distilleries, canals, and waterworks. The labor force, including children, transition from agricultural work to work in factories. Steam power bolstered the ability to manufacture goods in substantially larger quantities, and industrialized the textile industry. Steam derived from coal dramatically increased atmospheric pollution and caused many health hazards in Britain during the period. Coal was the main source of fuel for most factories. Households in Britain used it in their fireplaces. Britain emitted dark clouds of smoke that were more than 50 times higher than before the revolution Steam was also instrumental in the development and use of the locomotive which would eventually revolutionize transportation in the United States and Europe. Trains would play a critical role particularly in the United States by opening up western frontiers.
Representative Reads: Oliver Twist, Charles Dickens; The Communist Manifesto, Karl Marx
The Second Industrial Revolution was characterized by electrification and mass-production assembly lines. Everything grew in scale as new technological advancements and the development of the combustion engine system initiated the use of new sources of energy: electricity, gas and oil. This revolution was centered around an economic and industrial model based on new large factories. Industries were revolutionized by organizational models of production envisioned by American mechanical engineer Frederick Winslow Taylor and by American business magnate Henry Ford. The steel industry developed and dominated, the telegraph and telephone revolutionized communication, and transportation methods changed drastically, leading to the advent of the automobile in the late 1800s and the invention of the airplane in the early 1900s. Working conditions for laborers were oppressive and often consisted of 12-14 hour days in mines, textile mills, or factories with poor air quality, monotonous tasks, and few breaks. Coal production expanded from 4.7 million tons in 1750 to 250 million tons in 1900. Workers continued to attempt to organize, as worker guilds of medieval times transitioned into trade unions. Milestones include the discovery of electricity and oil, the expansion of cross national railroads in the US, and the industrial reliance on mass-production assembly-lines and heavy machinery powered by electricity.
Representative Reads: The Jungle, Upton Sinclair; The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald; The Fountainhead, Ayn Rand
The third industrial revolution traces back to the late 1960's and The US Department of Defense’s Advanced Research Projects Agency Network (APARNET) which developed many of the protocols used for internet communications today. This era is defined by the rise of electronics, from personal computers to new technologies that enable automation of industrial processes. In Industry 3.0, we automate processes using logic processors and information technology. These processes often operate largely without human interference, but there is still a human aspect behind it. Although automated systems were in place, they still relied on human input and intervention. Advancements in telecommunications led the way for widespread globalization, which in turn enabled industries to offshore production to low-cost economies and radicalize business models worldwide. Industry 4.0 takes it to the next level by utilizing vast quantities of data on the production floor.
Representative Read: The World is Flat, Thomas Friedman
The main difference between industry 3.0 and industry 4.0 is the degree of automation. The current era is marked by digitalization, digital transformations, personal connected devices, data analytics, Artificial Intelligence (AI) technologies, automation, and Industrial Internet of Things (IoT). This exchange of information is made possible with the Industrial IoT. Key elements of Industry 4.0 include:
Industry 4.0 has potential to make the full shift to renewable energy sources - wind, sun, and geothermal energy - to power smart cities.
Representative Read: Manna, Marshall Brain; Natural Capitalism, Paul Hawken, Amory Lovins, Hunter Lovins
World Population Day, which seeks to focus attention on the urgency and importance of population issues, was established by the then-Governing Council of the United Nations Development Programme in 1989, an outgrowth of the interest generated by the Day of Five Billion, which was observed on 11 July 1987.
By resolution 45/216 of December 1990, the United Nations General Assembly decided to continue observing World Population Day to enhance awareness of population issues, including their relations to the environment and development.
The Day was first marked on 11 July 1990 in more than 90 countries. Since then, a number of a number of UNFPA country offices and other organizations and institutions commemorate World Population Day, in partnership with governments and civil society.
(from UN website: www.un.org/en/observances/world-population-day/background)
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