HOW THE HELL CAN YOU BE “SUSTAINABLE”? IS IT STILL POSSIBLE?

Hey everyone!! Excuse my language but it is seemingly fit for the subject matter. I’ve been a little M.I.A. because of school and have been working on my magazine which you can follow on Instagram @andwhymag.

Before I go on and speak my point, I am NOT an expert and I claim all this to be an opinion. Take it and please consider it further with more research and conversations. That way, we can be more ecologically sustainable as a society.

I think this is perhaps the least talked about when it comes to the rise of sustainability, hand in hand with the fact that the definition of sustainability is rather based on perception.

Now what is sustainability? Sustainability, in simplest forms, means to have the ability to be maintained at a certain rate or level. That being anything from businesses, personal income, technology, human population, ecology, etc.

Another way people are saying that is, β€œSustainability or sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present, without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.” 

However, many people are utilizing the word “sustainability” to be more ecologically focused, especially in social media. Me included.

If we put it into perspective, sustainability is possible, in terms of that definition.We can sustain a lifestyle that will sustain us while taking care of a sustainable business and helping the environment at the same time. THIS. IS. POSSIBLE.

I believe a lot of people can be ECOLOGICALLY sustainable but any forms of extremism is not quite necessary. That’s a common misconception that we need to buy no clothes or purchase no plastic or go vegan. Balance is key and I will always say that. If everyone was vegan, the world will be filled with animals we’ve been consuming for centuries (I’m a vegetarian but I do respect ecologically sustainable farmers and their needs to sustain a lifestyle that allows that). If everyone ditched plastic, then everyone would rely on plastic alternatives. For my fashionistas, if you don’t buy fur jackets to save animals, synthetic fur jackets are made out of plastic. The cycle will never end. A way to ecological sustainability is balance. Set limits to how much you consume and reuse but no consumption at all isn’t a rational answer.

I am by no means shaming any of the vegans or anyone who devote their lives to ecological sustainability. I think they are doing a solid job in their own way. However, this method isn’t sustainable for everyone. You can’t ask someone who can only afford an H&M shirt to quit fast fashion for an expensive brand like Reformation with an average of 100$ per clothing piece. You also can’t tell everyone to go vegan because someone is going to need to eat red meat for their diet. That’s just not sustainable in a sense of personal finance and health. It’s just not for them and it’s not for everyone (remember that I did NOT say NO ONE).

Now, in class, we had a debate on whether ecological sustainability was possible. The answer was complicated. It would be a dream to educate everyone on how to be sustainable when education itself hasn’t really much adapted as quickly as it should. No everyone takes education as seriously as they should either. The quality of the education is not strong enough as well. However, education is where sustainability efforts can be solved. Perhaps that is true. If everyone starts learning more, there will be a larger discussion and we would put an end to ecological damage, together. How long will that take? Is that idea sustainable? Idk.

The answer in the end is probably balance. It must be a marriage of what’s possible and what’s impossible. Rational and emotional. If everyone took a little step to make a small change of habit, we can be closer to ecological sustainability.

Someone told me that ecological sustainability can solve all other sustainability issues. CAN is not WILL. Logically, we will have to cause troubles politically and even emotionally across the world to have this idea be true. People will lose their jobs in factories and money will need to shift in a way that is not predictable. For an idea? For a possibility? I believe it is worth a shot but will it be done faster than the ice melts in the Arctic? I assume not.

I hate to sound like a hater upon these efforts. But I do want to reiterate that the best way to be sustainable from ecology to anything personal is balance. I must admit that our ecology’s balance is tipped and we are falling faster than we can handle or solve. However, extremism is still not the answer. We need to take small personal steps to be better and on our own terms. Whatever our lives can sustain and afford, we will give to ecological matters. But that is also no excuse to do nothing at all.

Learning and educating ourselves at the consequences of our consumption is one of the best ways to be ecologically sustainable.

I hope this has shared some thinking to do. Challenge you to think outside of what you see on social media and what you learn in school. Again, what I said is not all factual and I do claim this to be my opinion. I tried to be fair with my argument and you can challenge me to it as well, I’d love to hear and share it if it’s also a fair argument.

Thank you for reading if you got to this far. I know it’s a lot longer than my usual articles.

Love you if you did, do comment πŸ™‚

Annie ❀

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