Blog 3 – Sustainable Future

Overall this week the lectures were more relatable.  The C2C and the C2G really put into perspective this week what I could do to help/change my sustainable, well somewhat sustainable, lifestyle.  The one thing from the lecture that really stood out to me was the definition of Reuse.  The fact that you cannot process or separate an item for it to be considered reuse of a material was new to me.  I think that almost everything can be reused or recycled.

The Ted Talk this week was actually very interesting, which was nice because sometimes the speakers drone on and on and that is not very desirable to listen to.  He spoke on three changes we as a society need to focus on.  Firstly, radical increases in resource efficiency. Secondly, shifting from a linear way of using resources to a closed-loop model. And thirdly, changing from a fossil fuel economy to a solar economy.  I believe that biomimicry has a lot of the solutions that we’re going to need to achieve this.  I think that if we can use what nature does and model the way we do things after that we could become a more sustainable generation.  Nature has lasted and could last far beyond what humans could, but when we interfere with how nature does things, we are killing the cycle and in turn killing nature.  If we want our future generations to have what we did we need to stop and start looking to nature as a solution.

During our class teachings over the different sections of the reading, I was able to learn more than just reading it alone.  The tenant my group talked about was “optimize rather than maximize”.  This was interesting to me and we compared this to how much demand there is for new, such as in the fashion world.  When trends change in the fast paced fashion world, so does our wardrobe. An easy comparison would be buying something from forever 21 which is usually cheaply made and not of good quality as opposed to buying a pair of Levi Jeans.  The jeans will last you longer and are the better more optimal choice as opposed to spending money on what’s only going to last you one season.  I also liked the tenant about gathering and using energy efficiently.  Living the state that we do, you would think things like wind or solar power would be more popular for everyday consumption.  Both options provide cheaper alternatives than what we currently use in our oil driven economy.  When talking about using materials sparingly, this leans more towards fabric use in the fashion as well as the interior design world.  An interesting point that some classmates brought up was recycling clothing such as a prom dress.  Why pay all that money for something you are only going to wear once, and never make back what you spent on it?  I did not do this, but I also still have prom dresses sitting in a closet that are probably never going to see the light of day again.

In my current life, I try my best to recycle whenever I can.  We have two recycle bins in my house that get put out every week to the Stillwater recycle center.  I fill it with things like glass bottles and cardboard boxes in hopes that doing that small act will actually make an impact.  I try not to buy more than I need especially when it comes to food.  I know I am responsible of wasting too much food during the week, and usually feel bad when I have to throw an expired item in the garbage.

When it came to the life principles I really liked the idea of evolving to survive.  I think that we need to implement this principle into everyday life.  Keeping things that work, getting rid of those that don’t and working towards a better future.  Creating new energy efficient designs will only get easier if we strive towards building a sustainable product that will actually last.  I liked this principle because I am a believer in survival of the fittest and that if you as a person cannot adapt to change you will struggle in life.

In the C2C activity, while we only discussed this and did not implement the design, I thought it could be interesting.  As an interior designer I think the idea of creating a more sustainable bed for younger aged children could be fun and useful.  I also think that you could build a bed that would last longer than the age frame listed on the paper.

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