History has shown that several plastics, originally considered completely benign, have since proven harmful to ecosystems, animals and ultimately to human health, demanding their control and in some cases elimination from use. This essay discusses the effects of PVC on human health (including a brief look at dioxins and phthalates) and the unsustainable PVC 'deathline'. It stresses the need for, and debates the practicality of, adopting the precautionary principle to limit the adverse effects of plastics.
Oliver Sylvester-Bradley, March 2003
The Rio Declaration calls for EIA to be undertaken for activities that are likely to have a significant adverse impact on the environment but is it actually succeeding in promoting sustainability? This essay discusses the fundamental problems of current assessment and acknowledges the limitations of EIA whilst proposing several means by which to improve on the current system.
Oliver Sylvester-Bradley, May 2003
From Compromise to Collaboration in the Design Process
This essay argues that a compromising approach to design is ineffective, short-sighted and in fact, outdated by advanced design techniques that culminate in more sophisticated, acceptable and rewarding solutions. Sim Van der Ryn explains that 'the most powerful technique available is an integrated design process that brings together project participants, stakeholders and outside expertise at the earliest practical point in the project to collaborate, co-create and execute a shared vision.'