Taking pollution down to zero
If you are a 90s kid like us, you might remember not paying enough attention to a cartoon about five pollution-fighting kids with magical rings whose mission was to help save the environment. While admittedly too engrossed in that week's Power Rangers' drama, we clearly didn't grasp the significance of the cartoon’s messaging about environmental and sustainability concerns. How could we have known that when the Captain Planet gang was battling pollution, habitat destruction, and the melting polar ice caps it was just a portent of the world to come? Nearly 30 years later, the idea of protecting the earth and acting more sustainably is now everywhere (if only we had magical rings to do it). So much so that sustainability is now a catch-all term that appears across a wide range of topics, from fashion to food practices to pretty much everything in between. So what does being “sustainable” actually mean in 2020?
People, planet, and profits
There’s a wide range of definitions for the term, but in short, sustainability is about preserving the resources we have and using them at appropriate levels (more on that, here) so that there are enough for us and future generations. Sustainability has three main pillars: economic, environmental, and social. These three pillars are informally referred to as people, planet, and profits. A simple way of picturing sustainable development is to imagine a stool with three legs, representing the environment, economy, and society. All three pillars must always remain balanced for a healthy society to sit comfortably. If one is unstable or weak, we all fall down. Eek.
That’s not sitting right
However, not everyone is down with the three-legged stool analogy. Some critics argue that humanity cannot have either an economy or social well-being without the environment being considered as different and at a more significant level than either the economy or social well-being. They note that the environment should be thought of as the floor upon which the stool sits. After all, what good is our economy or social status if we don't have a planet anymore?! TBH, that's fair. While it's a lot of analogies...
Reduce, reuse, recycle
So what should we make of all this? On an individual level, sometimes it can be difficult to know how to make a change and what to do to contribute to a better world. Some important sustainable choices are obvious and easy, like how hard is it to flip a switch off before leaving a room to conserve energy (which if you didn't know, is good for the planet, not just your ConEd bill)? Or bring a tote bag to the grocery store to cut back on the use of plastic bags? In fact, New York is implementing a $0.05 tax on plastic bags starting March 1. Others are less obvious, and that's why we're here to help! Here is a comprehensive list of ideas to help you live more sustainably today. Just remember that each individual has their own unique sustainability journey—and there are tons of ways to go about taking action in a way that feels right for you. All we ask is that you read this, absorb the info, and go out there and make Captain Planet proud.
High vibrational living
Not so crystal clear
A *precious* decision
BIG MACRO ENERGY
Did somebody say Big Mac?
If it fits your macros
So I eat three doughnuts a day? #IIFYM right?
Count me in
Putting the flame in inflamed
Is inflammation a good or a bad thing?