the meaning of sustainability

At environition.at, my goal is to integrate sustainability into my life and share the process with additional information. The idea of sustainability is present in nearly every post, but what is the meaning of that word? Read it here…

A new kind of thinking is necessary if humanity wants to continue living.“
Albert Einstein

Sustainability … a word I hear, read and write several times a day. The thought behind it is the foundation of a healthy nature, but until today Sustainability has no clear definition. Nevertheless, it affects almost all areas such as the economy, nutrition or energy, the present but also the future.

The three pillars of sustainability are:

  1. Economy: Profits should be used to ensure a company can survive in the long term.
  2. Social: People should be able to work under fair conditions and survive in a permanently livable society.
  3. Environment: Nature and animals should be preserved in the future.The combination of these pillars makes up a sustainability concept in which nobody should miss out (some definitions include the culture pillar).

The history of sustainability:

Hans Carl von Carlowitz was the first who shaped the concept of sustainability. In the 17th century, he transferred the word to forestry and wanted to preserve the natural forest system for future generations. Only a part of the tree population is allowed to be cut in order to ensure natural regrow.

Three centuries later, the Brundtland Report was written by the United Nations. It is seen as one of the first political steps towards sustainable development.

Later, at the United Nations Conference in Rio de Janeiro, the foundation for sustainable development was introduced. It says: In order to preserve vital resources, environmental, economic and development policies should develop common goals in order to preserve the quality of life for future generations.

What is the meaning of sustainability?

Sustainability is not a trend nor an eco-hippie vocabulary. It’s a concept that affects us all, whether we like it or not. Sustainability should protect nature, preserve life and enable development. I think it’s important that we understand what is behind the word and that we understand their meaning.

Only then,  the various representatives of the economy, energy and others will find a common basis, reach the global agreement and achieve goals with local participation.

 

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