Mindfulness

This past week we visited the Sustainability offices and recycling center here on campus. Personally the upholstery shop was something I never knew about on campus. I always assumed that the university simply ordered new furniture whenever anything was worn out or broken. The recycling center also interested me as I had never actually visited one that had the compactors in house. I had never realized the quantity of recyclable materials that needed to be gathered in order for it to be useful and had always assumed it had been less.

Recycling is a key factor in remaining mindful. Earth is currently overpopulated and it’s resources are being pushed to our limits. Conservation of resources as it helps maintain the population and population growth isn’t likely to stop. We need to foster a society that can create solutions that can maintain, if not improve, the current society we live in. This way, further on down the line, generations can enjoy their lives and continue to maintain our survival as a species.

We can see evidence of the necessity to do this by learning from the events of the history of Easter Island. The inhabitants of Easter Island centered their society upon the trees that inhabited the island. Slowly the trees ran out and the society began to break down and eventually collapse. We can see a parallel with our society’s reliance on natural gasses and artificial materials. Should we ever run out of these materials before finding an alternative we may find ourselves in a similar situation without the means to reverse our course.

For my report I am planning on looking into researching urbanization’s effects on poverty and environmental destruction. I’m hoping to gain a better understanding of it’s outcomes so that way when I become a designer I can better consider these outcomes as I select projects I want to work on and how I design. I used to think that sustainability was something a large group had to set their minds to. However, after calculating my carbon footprint I discovered how big of an impact small things can make. The individual can make the big difference in this case and it was interesting to see how diverse the class’s values and ideas on what constituted problems that they were interested in looking into, showing just how many ways we can make a difference.

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