wicked – really?

yes wicked 🙂

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How long can you use more than you produce?

If you continually use more than you produce, you’ll eventually run out. There no system of overproduction and consumption that can last. Annie Leonard said it best when she said that her opinion was not that you shouldn’t love your stuff but precisely the opposite. If all of us took better care of the things we had and weren’t constantly replacing things we would cut our consumption drastically. Disposable items are the biggest culprit in the case but also the easiest problem to handle in a lot of cases. Annie mentions bringing your own cup with you and bringing your own bags to the supermarket as two simple solutions that could have a huge impact. It’s these small changes that would allow us more energy to develop smaller countries and give honest entrepreneurs a chance. Jessica Jackley discussed her crowd funding ideas as well as the average idea of the poor and put these thoughts together to create Kiva. Kiva is a crowd sourced funding operation used to allow people in developed countries to microfinance people in undeveloped countries to start their own businesses to better their financial situations. This breaks away from the idea of the poor as “needy” and gives rise to the idea of the poor as “capable.” From natural resources to human resources, we could be using our energy better than we are. Yann Arthus-Betrand discussed how people in these developing countries are so used to unsustainable practices that they don’t even know that oil is coming to the end of it’s era and is supremely limited after consumed at almost 3x the amount it is produced every year. The extraction of materials such as gold and oil is also very primitive in these countries and is unregulated. These kinds of countries could benefit greatly from education and infrastructure. If developed countries such as the U.S. wanted to microfinance clean energy production plants in undeveloped countries, they could retrieve their investments from profits, increase efficiency and profits in other countries, and decrease emissions that cause environmental degradation. The developed world needs to show the undeveloped world how to construct things in a more green manner to the benefit everyone on this planet. If an average person such as myself was truly concerned about the environment we should start with our own activities, such bringing your own cup and bags as an activist,  and branch out to concerning ourselves with activities that would help those who don’t know how to help themselves such as developed countries, through communication and education, helping them to facilitate greener lifestyles. If you are stepping in owning your own business you could as an entrepreneur start by considering a sustainable future, as opposed to trying to fix issues you created before you considered the environment in your business activities. The truth is that there a small and big steps that any person can take towards a more sustainable future, but if every person just took a small step towards sustainability, the world as a whole could change for the better. Think hard in your decisions and remember what your impact is.

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A New Purpose for Sustainability

The three presentations of “Story of Stuff,” “Poverty, Money & Love,” and “A wide angle view of fragile earth” all have one thing in common, which is introducing ways that we can support sustainable practices. “Story of Stuff” emphasizes the importance of sustainability by showing the path of our resources from raw materials all the way until they are considered trash. The five stages of our resources are categorized under the processes of extraction, production, distribution, consumption, and disposal. It also informed its viewers of the importance of a healthy planet by claiming that we cannot be well if our planet is not well. “Poverty, Money & Love” was an inspirational story of how we can help small businesses grow. It used examples of people living in poverty in east Africa but explained that they did not see themselves as “poor”, but rather small business owners and entrepreneurs’. The concept is that if we loan these people small amounts, they will use the money to grow their businesses and be able to pay off their loans slowly. The small jumps in their standard of living are not only rewarding to witness but make an impact on their life that promote their sustainable, local businesses. “A wide-angle view of fragile earth” talks about how we may seem different around the world, but we all share one common denominator, our planet. We all call Earth our home, so why are we destroying it? The presentation talks about how we have changed our planet more in the last 50 years than we have since the start of mankind combined. We rely on unsustainable resources, keep contributing to global warming, destroy forests which are necessary to create oxygen, exploit resources such as fish, which 70% of people rely on, and have people starving. We are on the brink of creating an even larger disaster than we already have, so we need to come together to try and fix it. In the article Environmental Degradation – Poverty, the author discusses how poverty could be a factor with the shape that the planet is in now. It discusses the possible effects and how the poor are not to blame for their actions and that they should be assisted in improving their quality of living so that they may participate in more sustainable practices. I found myself to agree more with the “no” side of the article, that disagrees with the idea of poverty being a reason for environmental destruction. I believe that the poor across the globe do what they must do in order to stay alive, and yes, they may have unsustainable practices, but I don’t think that their practices are on a large enough scale to be an actual problem. I feel that the side of the world with money has a much larger effect on the environment such as the lumber industry, where people are cutting down forests too rapidly or the oil industry where people are making fossil fuels too available to the public to use at such a rapid pace. I think that people are greedy and would rather get a larger paycheck than help the environment by developing more sustainable practices. The article on Green Construction discusses the possibility of implementing more sustainable buildings as a social norm and the possible problems that go along with doing so. I think that the market is not more productive in transitioning to sustainability than the government because of certain problems. These problems include the difficulty of regulating to quantify costs of green buildings because there are so many different programs of implementing green buildings, the timeliness that it would take to revise codes so that green buildings could be implemented due to their technology not meeting coding standards for current code, the inconsistency of green building procedures not all being fully tested, and that Green Buildings are cheaper to operate, but are more expensive to build. The problem of the absence of reusing materials from previous buildings in new ones is wicked, due to its complexity to define a true problem and difficulty to find win-win solutions. If we do not do something about this issue, the world could be in trouble. We are already using resources way too quickly, but it doesn’t have to be this way. There are plenty of resources available that may seem like junk to some, but are perfectly capable just like the new ones. Recycling is a solution to minimizing waste and the use of resources, but is it being applied to every situation that it can be? One role that I might play within this issue is being an Educator. I can bring the issue to attention in society because I think that contributes to the problem, that people don’t know about the issue in the first place. If I can help bring awareness of the issue, I can make a difference in the world by gaining support in the community and more people to participate in the sustainable practice of recycling in all fields. 


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Blog 3

Jessica Jackley’s Ted Talk over “Money, Poverty, and Love” was great. Sometimes people just need a little support or help to do great things and that is exactly what she did. We often let money define a lot in our life, but it shouldn’t. Jessica’s business Kiva helps the poor by helping them. Like in the environmental degration reading it discusses how we do not need to blame the poor, but help them, just like Jessica. Annie Leonard discusses how we ALL are destroying the earth by production and consumption, not just a specific classification of people. We are all destroying the earth by living in such unstainable ways. Yann Arthus-Bertrand shows impacting photos of what our unstainable patters have and will do to our home if we do not stop mass pollution. He said “We do not want to believe what we know”, this is so very true. We know the damage we are doing, but we just continue the bad habits until something goes wrong. We should choose to change BEFORE the problems become too wicked.


The article over tackling climate change talked about the LEED program. I think the program is a really great way to create a more sustainable world, city by city. If every city had to build green buildings like the ones in the article then much resources would be saved. Going green or choosing the eco-friendlier product usually cost more, but in the end, it is such a better choice by the amount of pollution it keeps from being implemented on the earth.


Being part of the Design, Housing, & Merchandising at Oklahoma State University I have learned a lot about the unnecessary negative impact the industry has on the world. Being a student, I will be a communicator. I want to let my friends and family know how small changes can have a large impact. I want to tell them about my carbon footprint and how much pollution we implement without even realizing. When I enter the work force as a merchandiser I want to be an activist. I want to be able to stop a company from buying unsustainable textiles, or promote eco-friendly designers, really just anything I can to make some sort of sustainable impact in career. My wicked problem discusses the impact textiles have on the world. I have learned many shocking things while further researching. Cotton is the most used fiber to create textiles. A Cotton crop requires 2,700 liters of water, which is the same amount the average person consumes within a two-and-a-half-year time frame. That means for every shirt hanging in your closet 2 and a half years’ worth of water for a human is lost. Dying textiles is just as bad, using 1.3 trillion gallons of water per year. This wicked problem is HUGE and changes have got to be made!!!





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bye bye.

In the presentation “Story of Stuff” by Annie Leonard, is a very interesting presentation on the “golden Arrow of consumption and garbage” in the modern economic times. The documentary critically analyses the impact of excessive consumerism and role of individuals in promoting production sustainability.

The story “Poverty, Money & Love” by Jessica Jackley is about the importance of our view of other and ourselves concerning money. The presentation intrigues on the issues that govern money and is appropriate on individuals that have a negative attitude about money. It is enriching on the ways to manage and use money without bearing a wrong feeling and attitude.

In “A wide angel view of fragile Earth” by Yann Arthus-Bertrand, the narrator displays stunning aerial photographs that tough on the earth as human habitat and humanity. In the presentation, human activities are presented to negatively impact on the environment. It is informative on how human activities cause them to struggle for survival after destroying their own habitat. The documentary may help in finding remedies to environmental degradation and strategies that will promote environmental conservation and protection.

Environmental Degradation – Poverty, the reading is rich in the role of poverty on environmental degradation. Poverty derives people to engage in environmentally degrading activities that disintegrate the ecosystem and causes environmental degradation. Poverty causes rapid growth of industrial activities in poor developing countries, which shifts environmental degradation from the rich countries to the poor developing countries. The reading clearly connects poverty to environmental degradation using rich examples and illustrations that are both globally and locally acceptable. The reading informs on the ways that can be employed to facilitate formulation and implementation policies that will enhance environmental protection.

Tackle Climate change / Green Construction, this reading is very informative and clearly articulates remedies to climate change by green construction.   It is building and construction hastens climate change but green construction policies may aid in alleviating on the impact. The policies and ways to implement them are presented clearly and in a simple understandable language.

Social entrepreneurship, the reading clearly articulates the roles of the society in business and impact on the environment.  It illustrates how the society should collectively venture in business that are both profitable and environment friendly. The reading is rich will projects that social entrepreneurs may find useful.

 I have learnt that human beings mostly trigger wicked problems and the solution to these problems is in their hands. For instance, using too much material in making furniture engenders the environment but its remedy is simplifying furniture designs in order to make simple, beautiful and comfortable ones that use less material. This will contribute in conserving the environment.

My sustainability or wicked journey is dependable on the decision I chose to take.  A sustainable journey will need sustainable use of materials and strategies to rebuild the areas extracted.

My role, therefore, will be use quantifiable material, while putting up strategies that will ensure that the material extracted are restored at the same rate they are extracted.  In this case, I will take the role of an entrepreneur. This is because I will identify the market gap, design a project of filling the gap while considering the ways of reducing the impact of the project on the environment and sustaining the project for a long time. This role makes one to be hands on, and thus directly contribute to the problem solving.

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The Last Blog

Watching the story of life really put into perspective how a wicked problem works. They used the example of reducing plastic by making clothes out of water bottles, but they dove further into the problem. I did not realize what happened when you washed synthetic fibers. We think we fixed a problem but as we’ve learned from this class a wicked problem does not have a solution. Jessica Jackley’s video was also touching. I related to her she talked about her former views of the poor. It was lovely to see how she used what she had to make the lives of other better. I also appreciated how her company has continued to grow and help others and change the worlds view of people in poverty. In the reading environmental degradation I liked the conceptual shift of giving impoverished people the resources to change their ways and not just seeing them as the issue. By doing this I feel like we can be more connected as humans.  In the second reading, green construction, I thought it was super cool that the green buildings have been implemented at the state, local, and government. I hope that these kinds of buildings continue to grow in popularity, so we can continue taking steps to improve our future. In activity 3 I think  was able to find a lot more information on my issue of water pollution. I did not realize how many top companies played such a hazardous role. It was disheartening to see some of my friends brands, such as H&M, not caring about the people they are affecting. After learning more about wicked problems especially mine I have been a lot more conscious about where I buy my clothes and what they’re made of. I have also been thinking a lot about where my trash is going and I have been trying to recycle it. Because of these things I see myself as an educator. I want to lead by example and inform the people around me of the consequences of the decisions they make. I have already started by talking to my family.

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