A Sustainable Development Effort One Hundred Years in the Making

SLDI co-founder Terry Mock was invited recently by the Rotary International’s Port Orford, Oregon chapter to give a presentation on the SLDI pioneering sustainable land development model project Ocean Mountain Ranch located just outside the Port Orford city limits. Rotary International and the Rotary Foundation missions offer excellent complements to the holistic SLDI Code™ sustainable development model and an inspiring and unique case history in the evolution of sustainability on both local and global scales over the last century. It’s an evolution which all sustainable development practitioners and advocates can benefit from learning about.

Rotary and Sustainable Development

In 1905 the world’s first service club, the Rotary Club of Chicago, was formed. By 1921, Rotary clubs had been formed on six continents. The organization adopted the Rotary International name a year later. Today, 1.2 million Rotarians belong to over 32,000 Rotary clubs in more than 200 countries and geographical areas. As the organization grew, its mission expanded beyond serving club members’ professional and social interests. Rotarians began a grassroots sustainable development effort long before the term came in vogue by pooling their resources and contributing their talents to help serve communities in need. The organization’s dedication to this ideal is best expressed in its motto: Service Above Self.

In 1917 the Rotary Foundation was formed to enable Rotarians to advance world understanding, goodwill, and peace through the improvement of health, the support of education, and the alleviation of poverty. In order to better achieve this mission, in 1943 Rotary adopted a simple algorithm called “The Four-Way Test” by asking the following questions which lead to more socially sustainable end results:

  1. Is it the TRUTH?
  2. Is it FAIR to all concerned?
  4. Will it be BENEFICIAL to all concerned?

The Rotary Foundation has now identified six areas of focus for its grant structure moving forward. These areas reflect critical humanitarian issues and needs that Rotarians are addressing worldwide. They will align Rotary with other international development efforts and will strategically further the foundation’s mission.

  1. Peace and conflict prevention/resolution
  2. Disease prevention and treatment
  3. Water and sanitation
  4. Maternal and child health
  5. Basic education and literacy
  6. Economic and community development

Rotary Sustainable Land Development Infrastructure Projects

Rotary International embraces sustainability by developing water and sanitation projects worldwide. More than 1.1 billion people lack access to safe drinking water, and 2.5 billion people lack access to improved sanitation. Each year, 1.8 million people die from preventable diseases associated with unsafe water supply, sanitation, and hygiene. Therefore, activities in these areas are key health interventions. The United Nations Millennium Development Goals address this situation in goal 7:

Ensure sustainability. Within that goal is the target to “halve, by 2015, the proportion of the population without sustainable access to safe drinking water and basic sanitation.” 

The Rotary Smart and Sustainable Homes Program sets out to demystify the meaning of ‘sustainable housing,’ which is about creating appropriate housing design for our local climate and environmental setting, the varied life situations we are likely to face and our budget. Sustainable housing is defined as: Planning, designing and building dwellings to make them more socially, environmentally and economically responsible. Practically, this means they are more comfortable, livable, affordable, and accessible, responsive, healthier and cost effective to live in over the medium to long-term. The triple bottom line concept of sustainability is achieved through the application of smart design principles at the early stages of planning and constructing the home. Making these decisions upfront translates to multiple benefits for occupants by creating a home that is safer, more secure, flexible, comfortable, environmentally-friendly and cost-efficient over time.

Collaboration and the Future Vision Plan

The Rotary Foundation’s Future Vision Plan utilizes the concept of strategic partnerships with other organizations and has become a vital part of the plan’s model in order to leverage funding, advocacy, and technical expertise of other organizations to develop large-scale projects for Rotarians to implement.

The Port Orford Rotary Club has published the following article in their e-newsletter:

Ocean Mountain Ranch

The viewshed from Ocean Mountain Ranch (OMR) encompasses Humbug Mountain State Park, location of a large stand of old growth trees, and Red Fish Rocks an area included in the proposed marine reserve. Translated: Spectacular.

Terry Mock spoke about the four generations of his family that now own the property, and their plans for sustainable development according to their forest stewardship management plan. This plan has been reviewed and approved by the Oregon Department of Forestry, and others.

The goal for OMR is to become a model for the world when it comes to sustainable land development. Through careful planning OMR can sustain high quality hardwood, softwood and wildlife habitat forever, and provide an exemplary model for an organic forestry/grazing operation that incorporates residential, agricultural, educational,
recreational and industrial activities.

The SLDI Code: “The SLDI Best Practices System is symbolized as a geometrical algorithm that balances and integrates the triple-bottom line needs of people, planet, and profit into a holistic, fractal model that becomes increasingly detailed, guiding effective decisions throughout the community planning, financing, design, regulating, construction and maintenance processes while always enabling project context to drive specific decisions.”

If you would like to see the program he presented, please view the video here – Ocean Mountain Ranch – SLDI.


Sustainable Land Development Initiative

For the latest SLDI tweets, click here.

The 21st century will overturn many of our previously-held assumptions about civilization. The challenges and opportunities land development stakeholders now face – to fulfill the needs of society and achieve a favorable return on investment without harming the environment – have vast implications on the sustainability of our communities around the world.

SLDI - Sustainable Land Development Initiative is a stakeholder social media association now positioned to help transform the industry that creates the very infrastructure of our civilization. SLDI is dedicated to delivering sustainable land development technology and knowledge resources to promote and enable fully integrated sustainable land development worldwide.

How do we develop a sustainable civilization?
By delivering the "holy grail of sustainable decision making" - a universal geometrical algorithm that balances the needs of people, planet and profit - The SLDI Code™
The World’s First Sustainable Development Decision Model is symbolized as a geometrical algorithm that balances and integrates the triple-bottom line needs of people, planet and profit into a holistic, fractal model that becomes increasingly detailed, guiding effective decisions throughout the community planning, financing, design, regulating, construction and maintenance processes while always enabling project context to drive specific decisions.

2400 Green Street, Suite 201
Dubuque, IA 52001
Contact: twernke@sldi.org

SLDI Co-founders:
Terry Mock
Tony Wernke

Read The Fractal Frontier - Sustainable Development Trilogy.
Read Developing a Sustainable Endgame for the Global Economy
See history and evolution of SLDI @ SLDI Foundational Articles

16 responses


      Thanks for your interesting public comments. I agree with you on one thing. “All show and no dough” has been the position of most all land developers for some time now due to the ongoing financial crisis. The private financial sector must start to engage in the evolving ecosystem services markets by investing in sustainable infrastructure land development.

      OREGONMIKE, we sincerely look forward to receiving your answer to the question which is the theme of this entire blog – How do we build a sustainable civilization?

  1. How about you put your money where you mouth is. You speak of sustainability but do you drive an electric car? Do you grow your own food? Do you use solar power? Do you use a rain barrel to take showers?

    1. Well, hello again OREGONMIKE. So, this is your list of solutions to building a sustainable civilization? OK, I can do that. In fact all of these, and many more features, are being designed into the model project that is being presented here. And yes, it is being built entirely with private money because the US monetary system is currently not serving the best interests of society. How about turning your righteous indignation towards the real culprits who are resisting both of our efforts to achieve sustainability?

  2. You’ve been tootin’ your own horn around here for too long. Why haven’t we seen any pictures of your facilities? Show me what you’ve accomplished. They say the proof is in the pudding. Quite frankly I think we’re all tired of hearing about it around here

    1. Well OREGONMIKE, now that I know that you are a local, we both know that, as the well known saying goes, “There’s no hurry in Curry (County)”. Actually, the project would have been finished by now if there hadn’t been something called a financial meltdown in 2008, followed by the largest banking fraud in history which has robbed trillions from all of us. Sorry to disappoint you. I’m trying to make up for lost time now and I’d be happy to show you the recent progress with a tour of the project, at your convenience.

    1. OREGONMIKE, for the past five years, we have continued to implement a state-of-the-art ODF-approved forest stewardship plan (http://www.oregon.gov/ODF/privateforests/IncentivesFSP.shtml). This has proven to be a costly challenge, given the economic conditions previously mentioned, however, it is imperative that a more sustainable method of managing our forest resource base must be found in order to provide a model for the Port Orford Community Stewardship Area. Your suggestions about how to best achieve this are welcome.

  3. That’s fine and dandy about the stewardship plan but it doesn’t make your land anymore special than anyone elses. You have not yet answered any of my questions directly. You keep talking in circles.

    1. All right OREGONMIKE, thanks very much for commenting, but it seems like this dialogue it getting to the point where it has limited benefit for the public audience. Please feel free to continue to engage with Terry offline.


      Editor in Chief

      1. I could agree more Jan, OregonMike sounds like a broken record that was replaced by investigative knowledge years ago. We wasted too much time in this type of debate,while people like T,Mock has been doing things with little or no support. If I know you OregonMike; I love you anyway.

  4. UPDATE:

    Oregon Senate Bill 513 Ecosystem Services and Markets, Final Report

    With the passage of Senate Bill 513 in 2009, the Oregon Sustainability Board was directed to assemble an Ecosystem Services Markets Working Group to provide recommendations for creating a successful ecosystem marketplace in Oregon. This Working Group was comprised of local, state, and federal agencies; tribal representatives; conservation organizations; developers; and private landowners. The Working Group developed ten policy proposals for implementing an integrated ecosystem services market in Oregon. Key steps to developing the proposals were: nine working group meetings, interaction with the Oregon Sustainability Board, and solicitation of input from interested members of the public. This final report presents background information and an outline of guiding principles for ecosystem service markets in Oregon, as well as an explanation of each of the Working Group’s policy recommendations and proposed actions. The report also includes numerous examples and models of ecosystem service approaches within Oregon, as well as a synthesis of case studies from throughout Oregon.

    Guide to Environmental Markets for Farmers and Ranchers

    This paper details the opportunities for farmers and ranchers in Washington to participate in environmental markets. Some environmental market activities could reduce the total amount of income generated from agricultural activities, and the paper talks about payment systems to offset those losses. The development of the guide was influenced by an advisory committee of agricultural leaders, interviews with several farmers and ranchers, three intensive focus group discussions, and a regional Workshop and Listening Session with key leaders in Washington and Oregon agriculture. The resulting paper includes background information on environmental markets, including explanations and status updates of five types of environmental markets in Washington: greenhouse gas markets; wetland, habitat and biodiversity markets; water quality markets; water quantity markets; and renewable energy markets. The paper also advises farmers and ranchers on the opportunities and risks involved with entering environmental markets, offering guidance for evaluating financial returns and developing a market strategy. Current issues facing agricultural participation in environmental markets are recognized and countered with suggested actions that farmers and ranchers can take to encourage and influence the development of the five market types described above. Other needs identified for continued market development and opportunity include: establishing reasonable baselines, identifying possibilities for new markets, and educating government and the community.

  5. What has OREGONMIKE done? What ideas does OREGONMIKE have? Try being part of the solution and not the problem.

  6. Terry what an inspiration you are to all of us. Keep that passion fired up in you! Thank you for trying to do good in this world. You are not only trying to protect this earth which then helps the animals who reside in it. I enjoy each and every one of your articles. Keep them coming………..

    1. Here you go Linda…

      Sustainability champions honored in 2011 B.C. Real Estate Foundation awards

      Vancouver Sun November 4, 2011

      The Real Estate Foundation presented four Land Awards in total recognizing leadership and innovation in the sustainable use, or conservation, of land.

      In the private-sector category, Vancouver developer ParkLane Homes was honored for its River District project, a 52-hectare planned community on the banks of the Fraser River in southeast Vancouver launched last May.

      “From the outset of the planning process, we were committed to social, economic and environmental sustainability,” ParkLane president Peeter Wesik said in a news release.

      The Nature Conservancy won in the category for non-profit organizations for Darkwoods, which is officially known as the Darkwoods Forest Carbon Project.

      The organization set up the conservancy with partners Ecosystem Restoration Associates and 3Green Tree Ecosystem Services to measure the amount of carbon sequestered in the forest and manage it in a way to keep generating salable carbon credits possibly worth millions of dollars over time.

      In a news release, Linda Hannah, the Nature Conservancy’s B.C. regional vice-president said the goup believes carbon credits give conservation groups, such as themselves, a viable new source of financing in difficult times.

      “This opens up the world of private land conservation to new possibilities of scale,”Hannah said in the news release.

      “With the rising cost of land and current global economic uncertainty, non-profits everywhere have to find new and creative ways to fund their charitable works.”

      Read more: http://www.vancouversun.com/business/Mark+Angelo+among+sustainability+champions+honoured+2011+Real+Estate+Foundation+awards/5660449/story.html#ixzz1ctijKb00

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