Is sustainability just a fancy word? A fad maybe, or something truly worth pursuing?
60% of the world population is paying more attention to their impact on the environment since COVID-19.
As most of the world’s population went in lockdown we heard stories about nature reclaiming what was theirs, better air quality and positive impact on animal species around the world. So long story short, sustainability and sustainable living is not a choice, but maybe the only option before world as we know implodes under the weight of man-made catastrophes like pollution and garbage.
What is sustainable living?
Sustainability is a complex topic with its roots in almost every aspect of human living however a simple explanation that I came across starts with the belief and acknowledgement that the natural resources are limited and finite. We need to learn to live and thrive and develop our communities in ways that are inclusive, while putting minimal pressure on the resources. This can start with helping in rejuvenation of resources where possible along with conservation and renewable use of resources.
Why is sustainable living important?
Sustainable living today has become imperative as researchers world over are finding links between the extreme climatic conditions and human activities. The increased pressure of human activities can be seen in the alarming rate at which fossil fuel is being burnt or the increase in health issues. We need to provide a livable planet to our future generation as they have no other place to go!
The UN too in 2015, General Assembly adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. This includes 17 SDG (Sustainable development goals) with the principle of “Leaving no one behind”. The agenda takes a holistic look at achieving sustainable development for all.
What are the 17 sustainable development goals?
We can broadly see that all goals are linked towards improving the life of humans around the world while trying to maintain a better balance viz-a-vis the preservation and growth of other species, plants and the nature as a whole. For us, to contribute meaningfully to any of this would need a better understanding of our environmental problems and work towards improving it on our personal level.
Over the past year I have been featuring such stories of communities or people who have come up with innovative ideas to reduce human pressure on the environment, but now going forward I wish to share simple tips and suggestions to manage these issues better on an individual level.
We can’t just pass the buck on our governments or hope that they would come up with directives for us to attain India’s sustainable development goals. As an individual, there are a lot of things that we can do and over the years, various governments have tried to build awareness towards our contribution, but today as we have started experiencing effects of climate change first hand it is time to stop and think hard about what kind of world do we wish to hand our children?
“We Do Not Inherit the Earth from Our Ancestors; We Borrow It from Our Children”
In a recent global study conducted for EDF by IPSOS, there was hope.
- The environment is among the top 6 concerns on a global level
- India is among the few countries that want green growth in their region (60% + respondents)
- Climate change in the 2nd environmental concern in 2020
- 54% of the respondents believe fighting climate change will primarily involve a change in their lifestyle.
India currently is grappling with a multiple issues but for the sake of this series I would like to focus on some of the biggest environmental concerns and how we can contribute on individual level. In the upcoming series I would be focusing on these key topics and tips about what we can do. I will also try and share real life examples of things that are already underway – scientific innovations, research and companies working in green sector to help reduce this burden.
- Waste management in everyday life
- Air Pollution concerns and ways to reduce it
- Water Pollution does not happen only from industries.
- Reducing dependency on fossil fuel ( Renewable energy)
This post is part of Blogchatter’s CauseAChatter – Environmental Talks series.