All actions have consequences. Today, as a society every decision we make connects to our environment and causes big and small consequences. We don’t need to save the planet because it does just fine on its own, but we do need to save mankind’s relationship to the planet. I connected to the idea that we must live off nature’s income and not capital. The Earth provides the opportunity to use renewable energy, recycle, and conserve. We have created various systems of recycling, renewable energy, and conservation her at OSU that have made great strides. We must design our lives based on our environment because if we don’t mankind’s future is put at risk of following those of Easter Island. We must accept that our life on Earth, like Easter Island, contains advanced societies, but has limited resources to support our societies demands. In the end, Easter Island exists, but its people don’t. That could be our very own future as a whole human race on Earth, but we can make changes for the better. Many people around the world and in this class have done, at the least, one thing better than those of Easter Island; we have recognized our limited resources and tried to create a shift to improve our situation. We can build off of renewable energy, recycling, and conservation. We just need to keep doing more. OSU is an example of these possibilities.
Our visit to the OSU Office of Sustainability was eye opening. I was amazed and empower by the fact that 72% of our energy comes from wind generated power. Furthermore, we have compressed natural gas busses, reusable cups, tray less lines, compost produce, eco-friendly disposable products, and various other practices under the energy conservation guidelines that have tremendously improved our schools sustainability. The visit to the recycling center and upholstery shop gave me hope that we can and have made changes that have reduced our negative impacts on Earth. I enjoyed the eye-opening possibilities and work that goes into recycling and restoring. I have noticed in the past week I have been mindful in turning off all my lights, when I leave a room, and recycling more of my water bottles and paper. I found my carbon foot print of 82 tons CO2/year is about average, but I don’t want to be average and our environment demands we all do better. It is not impossible by any means to do small things like recycling because those small changes we make have big effects. These small changes in mindset and practice has not only helped our environment, but has saved OSU $50 million since 2007. I think OSU’s story can help create paradigm shift. A look through a new lens must be taken because we currently need 50% more Earth than we have. We are stealing from the future and that is not okay.
I think in order to really transform society’s perspective and create a paradigm shift more stories need to be shared. It is easy to separate oneself from our overall issues as a world, but when it has played a role in someone’s life that you know or care about or comes from you others will listen and accept the need for change. I know that this class is providing me with my own narrative that I can share with others in order to influence and inform them. Furthermore, more education in regards to sustainability and mindfulness must be shared to all people, the earlier the better. To think right now we need one and a half Earth’s is scary because I know for a fact an additional half of Earth will not being make an appearance to save the future of the human race. Millions of people, including me before this class, are not aware of how serious our issues are within our relationship to nature and Earth. Today, we have the responsibility to make changes that can and must be done for our lives, the lives of our future family members, friends, and even strangers.
The Wildest Thing activity shows we are aware of the problems within our environment we face and that issues we hate. Although some of our solutions to these problems could be extreme, each thing we identified as a problem or disliked could be explored and solved. We must act on these ideas and create a better present and future. These possibilities of improvement must be researched, evaluated, and used to create a course of action. I want to research and explore the issue of waste within the fashion industry. Not only does fashion waste fabric and garments, but also energy and large sums of water. In the UK alone, consumers annually produce around two million tons of textile waste, of which around 1.3 ton end in landfills. This issue can be applied to the whole world of the fashion industry and then applied mankind’s waste as a whole. Change must be now and not later because there may not be a later.