What does sustainability mean to you?

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The Lindau Nobel Laureates Meeting 2013 with Green Chemistry as its theme concluded on Friday (July 5, 2013) on Mainau Island, Lake Constance, reports TOI.

“Braungart offered that sustainability was a bad word as it meant making compromises; what is needed is to design products in such a way that it avoids wastage. He pointed out that chemical polymers were not eco-friendly; yet the conference bags distributed to students were made of plastic! Work backwards, he advises, and find ways of innovating chemical designs so that we avoid making the same mistakes.” –TOI

DSCN5734Interesting. Michael Braungart is founder and scientific director, EPEA. This makes me wonder if the word ‘sustainability’ is really used that loosely. To the EPA, it means this:

Sustainability is based on a simple principle: Everything that we need for our survival and well-being depends, either directly or indirectly, on our natural environment.  Sustainability creates and maintains the conditions under which humans and nature can exist in productive harmony, that permit fulfilling the social, economic and other requirements of present and future generations. Sustainability is important to making sure that we have and will continue to have,  the water, materials, and resources to protect human health and our environment.

To the Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH), it means this:

There is no simple definition of ‘sustainability’. It can be an idea, a property of living systems, a manufacturing method or a way of life. In fact, there may be as many definitions of sustainability as there are people trying to define it.

However, most definitions include:

-living within the limits of what the environment can provide
-understanding the many interconnections between economy, society and the environment
-the equal distribution of resources and opportunities.

You could read these depending on the various realms of life.

You could watch this animation explaining sustainability:

You could also watch this video:

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