Beginning this semester, I was kind of rolling my eyes to the thought of a sustainability course. I mean, we hear about it all the time, here and there, about “going green”, global warming, and everything else to save the planet. It gets really redundant after a while. When I think of people giving speeches like these, I think of a publicity stunt or someone just flaunting how amazing they are because they are saving our world. However, we actually touched on this subject in our first two discussions. Many people are this way, but there are those who live the life instead of showing it off. I am happy we touched on this early on, because it opened me up to wanting to learn more about sustainability and how I can implement it into my future career.
I am a numbers girl. By that, I mean I rank the importance of impact and need by hard statistics. In our reading of Easter Island, we learned how many people were impacted by the destruction of their resources, and when we discussed it in class, Dr. Armstrong provided us with a comparison of the size and population of the island compared with the density of Stillwater. This really put it into perspective for me that if it was that easy for the people of Easter Island to destroy their environment, it is incredibly important for the world today to be aware of our resources and find ways to save them.
The reading for apparel was presented exclusively with statistics, and most of it was very shocking. One of the most surprising facts I read was the amount of water is used in cotton production. It takes over 10 tons of water to grow enough cotton to make one pair of jeans. This is incredibly sad, especially considering there are many countries that have no access to clean water at all. This is one of the many issues we face as a planet.
Like I said, I am a numbers girl, and all of the numbers in our reading and discussions were very eye opening. So I ask this, what’s your number? How much destruction does it take for you to start wanting to make a difference?