The Coexisting Factors

When experiencing the OSU sustainability office and the upholstery shop here on campus my expectations honestly didn’t know where to be. I was simply taken away by the work these offices were doing. The sustainability office is actively reducing the energy waste and water waste on the OSU campus every year. Saving more than 50 million dollars in the last few years alone by lunching a lights off campaign to save energy. The OSU campus is also powered mainly off wind energy, providing thousands with clean energy every single day and being ran and upheld by the sustainability office. OSU campus clearly doesn’t like to have a hand in unnecessary waste. There for an upholstery shop is located on campus as well. This is a shop that renews old furniture and recycles old materials. Keeping the cost and amount of furniture waste to a minimum year after year. As if these offices weren’t making a big enough difference the campus is also equipped with a recycling center that gathers cardboard, paper, bottles, and aluminum daily and sorts it and packages it to be sent off and processed. Reducing the amount of waste and landfill every day. The fact that our school and community is so dedicated to making a difference is so mind blowing. The only thing I would wish could change about this facility is the recognition. If more people knew the kind of work going into the program it is possible more people would be more likely to recycle and renew their furniture.

I believe intergenerational responsibility is bigger than simple tasks like preserving energy or using less plastic. It runs deep, it’s making decisions that are beneficial for many. Its thinking about the future generations as well as yourself. Remembering over population you could choose to adopt, or limit the amount of children you have. We could make small sacrifices like donating 10 percent of our annual income to organizations that have helpful plans and actions in place. To put the needs of other, present and future, is to be a part of something that’s bigger than you. Something that will start a ripple. Our culture as a world today has fallen into the mindset of selfishness. We take without thinking about the consequences. We do without thinking of others. Much like Easter Island, we take more than we can produce. The world isn’t designed to be growing as much as we are ripping from its tender soils. Growing bare and fruitless, we too will end up facing starvation and uneasy situations if we don’t take notice to the consumption we partake in daily.

With the world constantly taking, we forget that some people have lost everything. Homelessness has become a striking problem in the world today. With more than 554K people facing a homeless crisis in the united states alone, we are facing a wicked problem. The world has over 1.6 billion people in it that don’t have shelter. The human body needs three key structures to live. Food, water, and shelter. Without these three coexisting the human body cannot function properly, thus resulting in a 30-year life expectancy difference. Before taking this course and widening my understanding of sustainability and how many corners of life that bleeds into, I myself didn’t think twice about my choices and how they may affect others or our environment as a whole. My understanding runs deeper than a choice to recycle or not. It’s a choice on if I want to change my habits for a better future or not. oc

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