What is environmental and social sustainability

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One of the values that is increasingly implanted in society and in the philosophy of many institutions, companies and ordinary citizens is sustainability. To speak of sustainability is to do it in a way of understanding the relationships that are established in a society. To say that something is sustainable means that the relationship that something establishes with the environment does not constitute an aggression or the future destruction of it. In this way, establishing sustainable relationships in all areas of human life guarantees their durability, that is, it ensures a long-term future.

Of course, one can speak of many types of sustainability. Two of the most important are environmental and social, which refer to the way in which human beings relate to the environment and to society itself. If you want to delve a little deeper into what is environmental and social sustainability Continue reading Green Ecologist and we will tell you about it.

Types of sustainability

The concept of sustainability has its origins in the late 80s of the twentieth century, and appears as a novel approach that human actions must take in order that, these same actions, do not lead to the destruction of environments and resources in which they are made. In other words, it is at this time that official bodies begin to be truly aware that human actions have a destructive impact on the environment and that, if they continue to develop at the same speed and with the same impact, they will lead to destruction. of the environments and ecosystems where they take place.

Sustainability is a necessary consequence that arises as response to abuse of human activities on natural environments. However, it is soon concluded that, beyond the environment, the concept of sustainability can be applied to any space or activity take place. In this way, despite the fact that environmental sustainability is the main bulwark of this concept, it can also be applied to other spheres of human life, such as:

  • Social sustainability.
  • Economic sustainability.
  • Energy sustainability.

What is environmental sustainability?

When we speak of environmental sustainability, we are referring to the fact that the relationships established with the environment do not lead to its destruction, so that these relationships are "sustainable" or durable in the long term. In this way, affirming that an activity is environmentally sustainable is the same as saying that said activity has a sufficiently small impact on the environment so as not to imply its degradation, from a natural resources perspective, whether they are focused on water conservation, soil quality, animal and plant richness and diversity, and so on.

Examples of environmental sustainability

A good example of environmental sustainability We find it in ecological tourism or ecotourism. This type of tourism does not renounce tourist activity. However, the way it is carried out takes care that the activity itself does not degrade the environment. In this way, it is ensured that the activity can be carried out in the long term since the environment where it takes place, and which is the basis for carrying out the same activity, will remain unchanged by the activity itself in the long term.

Thus, a symbiotic relationship is established between human activity (eg ecotourism) and the environment. In fact, for human activity to last in the long term, it needs a good state of the environment. Likewise, the environment needs human activity to be limited to a sustainable activity so that it does not destroy it, which is why both parties are strengthened by “sustaining” human activities.

What is social sustainability?

When it comes to social sustainability, the sustainable approach is being put on the way of life of a specific social group. This type of sustainability is especially important in the case of peoples and social sectors that have a situation of vulnerability or disadvantage compared to others. Its main objective is to ensure that human activities can be carried out in such a way that do not destroy the human communities affected, which guarantees the durability of them and their long-term lifestyles.

A good example would be the agricultural world and crafts. In both cases, they are human activities that are linked to rural communities and that constitute an intangible wealth of great social value. When a relationship is established with these communities, the right thing to do so that they can last will be to do so from a social sustainability approach. In this way, it will be possible to preserve this type of work and, at the same time, the human communities associated with it.

Sustainability on a large scale

However, despite the fact that sustainability applies to different sectors depending on the case in question, the reality is that they do not constitute watertight compartments. In other words, environmental, social, or any other kind of sustainability should not be understood as a closed and isolated world in itself. In fact, talking about sustainability is talking about relationships, and these types of relationships are deeply interconnected with each other and that, as the 21st century progresses, everything suggests that this network of interconnections will be increasingly higher.

This means that sustainable activities nurture each other regardless of which category they belong to. Sustainability is a value and a model that build lasting long-term relationships. It is a new paradigm that comes to replace the "throwaway" philosophy that has prevailed in recent decades and that has led to disastrous damage. In fact, sustainability guarantees, not only the survival of each space or sphere where it is applied, but, in a broader perspective, it constitutes the only way to ensure the survival of life on Earth, which also includes life itself. survival of the human species.

If you want to read more articles similar to What is environmental and social sustainability, we recommend that you enter our category of Society and culture.

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