Today, we live in a changing world - where our environment is taking a beating. It's our responsibility to make choices to adopt a more sustainable lifestyle - one that works for both ourselves and the world.
Text: Lyndsay Jensen
But how can you lead a cleaner lifestyle? Is sustainable living as tricky as it sounds? And above all - what does it mean to live more sustainably? So as we celebrate Earth Day on Friday, 22nd April and the arrival of warmer weather in Denmark, let's investigate how we can make a difference.
So what does sustainability mean?
Today, sustainable living means being careful of our everyday actions, being aware that some resources are not infinite, and we need to protect what we have left of the earth. The support for this type of living is growing, with many people and organisations committing themselves to more sustainable living. For example, the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs created the Sustainable Development Goals: 17 goals that list problems where considerable work is needed, according to all United Nations member states, to find solutions. Also known as the "SDGs," these 17 goals deal with several topics, ranging from issues of warfare to achieving gender equality and the need to reduce pollution.
So, how are my actions affecting the future? Am I creating irreparable damage that future generations will have to deal with? What can I do to change things around me?" These are all questions that you might ask yourself.
All over the world, sustainable living is being embraced by people and corporations. Sustainable living means building more movements for change, using less energy, creating less waste, travelling more consciously, changing our shopping habits and holding corporations and governments accountable.
But why is it so important?
If you had known me before I moved to Denmark, talk of sustainability would never have crossed my lips. I'd only just come to terms with separating my trash over the last few years – but now I'm seeing why it's essential for everyone to get involved, and there are several reasons why it is beneficial for everyone. Sustainable living will protect our environment, improve our living conditions and ensure the availability of natural resources for future generations.
Protecting our future generation
One important reason for choosing a sustainable lifestyle is that we need to save the resources we have for the future generation. This concerns energy and food resources and clean water and air. We have to make this ethical choice. Will we sustain our current lifestyle at the expense of our children and grandchildren? If we don't embrace a more sustainable lifestyle, we risk making life harder for them – or even losing our future on this planet entirely.
Building on a healthy habitat
Sustainable living also means reducing our pollution to ensure clean water and air for animals and plants co-living on this planet with us. Our home planet is becoming fragile through the growing number of natural disasters - we must protect and sustain it. The ecosystem is so precarious that if we overfish or pollute too much in one place, we risk damaging the whole food chain of that area and losing many species.
Sustainable living is not only an individual choice - the entire world benefits when we take action to live more cleanly. You can start small and continuously educate yourself to create more long-term adjustments to live a more conscious, green life.
Others around you will notice your changes and may be curious about your choices and ask questions. The more you educate others, the more you can inspire people to do the same. Tell them about the minor changes you started with, which they could quickly adapt to their own life. Tell them about the environmentally friendly products you have tried and which ones you liked and didn't.
Always be honest about your experience and share your knowledge. This will only make it easier for them to adopt these changes. In addition, any small change can inspire others to do the same. Use social media for positivity - plant a seed of thought on Earth Day by sharing with others.
Mother Earth will thank you!