What is Sustainability?

There are a lot of green companies starting to emerge in the United States. Socioculturally, there is a movement to begin using more green methods in our daily lives. This process can be categorized by the term sustainability and it has been around for ages. The Iroquois Gayanshagowa, or Great Law of Peace, required the chiefs to consider the impact their present decisions will have on the 7th generation to come. The term actually became common after 1987 when the UN defined sustainable development as development that “meets the needs of present generations without comprising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs”.

What exactly does this term mean? Go ahead, do some research on the term sustainability. There are about any many definitions of this word as there are groups that are trying to define it. All of these definitions have a few things in common. They deal with:

– Living within our limits
– Understanding the interconnections among economy, society, and environment,
– Equitable distributions of resources and opportunities.

Here are some of the many definitions of sustainability

– Sustainability is a new way of thinking about an age-old concern: ensuring that our children and grandchildren inherit a tomorrow that is at least as good as today, preferably better. We want to make sure that the way we live our lives is sustainable – that it can continue and keep improving for a long, long time.
– We define sustainable environmental stewardship to include those concepts, strategies, tools, practices, and approaches that lead to environmental improvement in a manner that is sustainable over time, considers the long term effects as well as the shorter term, more immediate effects, and that contributes positively, even if indirectly, to the social and economic condition.
– Leave the world better than you found it, take no more than you need, try not to harm life or the environment, make amends if you do.
– A sustainable society is one that lives within the self-perpetuating limits of its environment. That society is not a “no growth” society – it is, rather a society that recognizes the limits of growth and looks for alternative ways of growing.
– If you get right down to it, sustainability is really the study of the interconnectedness of all things.

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