Environmental Sustainability—Definitions & Brief Insight

Generally speaking, “sustainability” can be defined as the characteristic or attribute of being sustainable. Sustainability can also be defined as the ability of an object, thing, or individual to be sustained or maintained without becoming degraded, deteriorated, or weak.

The term “environmental sustainability” can be defined as long-term sustenance or maintenance of the environment by interacting with and treating it in ways that can conserve, protect, or avoid depletion/degradation of its components which include all the renewable and non-renewable natural resources and ecosystems that support the wellbeing of all life-forms, now and in the future.

Human, animal, and environmental wellbeing are closely linked with how well the environment and its constituents are treated, and how well the environment is maintained or sustained in a healthy state. One of the aims of practicing environmental sustainability is to ensure that today’s world and its population are utilizing resources to a great extent without putting the needs of future generations in jeopardy.

According to WHO (World Health Organization), about 24% of deaths around the world are caused by avoidable environmental factors—note the word “avoidable”. As the world has been experiencing the long-term negative effects of increasing energy use and industrial growth, its inhabitants have to act or behave in sustainable ways that can halt/help avoid or prevent further damage to the environment.

The practice of environmental sustainability demands that appropriate and adequate methods are implemented and skills are employed in creating and sustaining or maintaining environmental conditions that can make it possible for living and non-living things to exist in harmony with nature, while at the same time halting or eliminating harmful actions and substances that may affect the natural environment and cause sicknesses and injuries.

The practice of environmental sustainability considers and integrates all levels of environmental, social, and economic factors in ways that can help create and implement programs aimed at educating the masses about the environment, improving air quality, destroying things that contaminate the environment, developing a green environment, and efficiently using technologies to preserve all life-forms, land, air, water, ecosystems, minerals, and forests.

If properly implemented, environmental sustainability practices can reduce or halt hunger and poverty, create economic stability and growth, conserve natural resources much better, and help to achieve other conditions that can improve the quality of the environment for present and future generations.

Environmental sustainability can be implemented on a global scale through teamwork and the combined effort of different populations, businesses, industries, and governments at local, state, national, and international levels. The groups of individuals or governments that wish to achieve environmental sustainability, need to develop a clear-cut vision—based on any existing situation—with long-term or short-term aims and objectives, and implement programs using the best field-tested practices which need to be backed up by necessary budgets.

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