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Sustainable Fossils: Past Life for the Present and Future
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Earth Sciences, Department of Earth Sciences.
2011 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Fossils are a non-renewable natural resource and impart many different kinds of value including scientific, educational, aesthetic and via practical uses such as construction. They provide an entirely irreplaceable record of life on Earth yet ensuring their sustainable use has often been overlooked. Ten case examples of fossil sites, with a European focus but from around the world, are documented in a framework of economic, social and environmental spheres typically used in sustainable development theory. The sustainability of the way fossils are treated at the sites is examined, compared and discussed. Non-extractive uses are generally found to be most straightforwardly sustainable, but concerns such as pollution must be born in mind. Extractive uses (commercial collecting, quarrying) present more challenges but can be made sustainable by involvement of science and investment of profits. Without a coordinated global policy for sustainable development in all areas fossil use cannot be sustainable globally.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Keyword [en]
sustainable development
National Category
Natural Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-160439OAI: diva2:451040
Educational program
Master Programme in Sustainable Development
Life Earth Science
Available from: 2011-11-01 Created: 2011-10-24 Last updated: 2011-11-02Bibliographically approved

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