What is sustainability? Find out what that means

What is “sustainability”? Basically, it’s a product and consumer version of the Hippocratic Oath of the Physician: First, don’t do harm – in this case, the environment.

More than just a buzzword, it’s a spirit that you can actively apply to your everyday life by:

  • The groceries you buy
  • Sponsored restaurants
  • The companies that support it
  • The products you use

Here is a glossary of some of the most important terms of sustainability, starting with the concept itself.

What is sustainability?

Explains “sustainable agriculture practices have the potential to increase food production without increasing environmental degradation” Dana Ellis Hoeness, PhD, MPH, RD, Senior Dietitian at RR-UCLA Medical Center and author of the upcoming book A Recipe for Survival: What You Can Do to Live a Healthier and Green Life (Cambridge University Press).

Among other things, sustainable farmers are improving soil – reducing erosion and improving its ability to store water and nutrients – using organic and renewable farming techniques, such as fertilization.

“Food is sustainable when grown without compromising economic, environmental, social or political needs,” says Houns.

This spirit applies to the manufacturers and manufacturers of other products as well.

Professional advice: Read more About Beachbody’s commitment to sustainability, fair trade practices and quality in Shakeology production.

1. The carbon footprint

according to University of Michigan Sustainable Systems Center, a Carbon traces It is the total greenhouse gas emissions produced directly and indirectly by an individual, organization, event or product.

Food accounts for between 10% to 30% of the total household carbon footprint, 68% from food production and 5% from transportation.

Meat has a much higher carbon footprint than vegetable products.

A woman puts leftover vegetables in a compost pail

2. Fertilization

“Composting is a natural process to rot or decompose organic matter,” Hoeness says.

Crop residues, animal waste, food waste and other fibrous materials (such as paper) are collected and allowed to decompose, then used as fertilizer for the new crops.

“This increases the absorption of healthy nutrients – such as vitamins, minerals and other bioactive compounds – in the crops themselves, and reduces or eliminates the need for inorganic fertilizers, pesticides and herbicides,” she explains.

3. Fair trade

This is a social and environmental aspect of sustainability, aimed at helping farmers and manufacturers in developing countries.

“The basic principle of fair trade is that it supports responsible companies, empowers farmers, workers and fishermen, and protects the environment by paying a fair price for the product and the work they do to the workers, regardless of fluctuations in market prices,” Hunnes says. “Fair trade producers tend to engage in environmental stewardship, banning the use of harmful chemicals and taking measures to protect and replenish natural resources.”

4. Green products

The definition of a green product is diffuse and ambiguous. (This enables green washing; see below).

After studying a range of interpretations of the term, researchers write in 2019 edition From Journal of Economic Surveys He suggested this comprehensive definition: “A product (tangible or intangible) that reduces its environmental impact (direct and indirect) during its entire life cycle, taking into account the current technological and scientific situation.”

5. Greenwashing

When a manufacturer takes advantage of the vague definition of “green products” to pass their products as environmentally responsible when they are not really.

6. It is grown locally

“Local food markets usually include small farms that grow or raise a variety of products and have short supply chains,” says Hunnes. “Farmers often perform all of their marketing functions including warehousing, packaging, transportation, distribution and advertising of their products.”

The benefits of local food systems include boosting employment and income within their communities and reducing the amount of energy required and greenhouse gases emitted from moving produce from farm to market.

7. Locafor or Locafor

A person eats only locally grown foods.

8. Organic

“Organic farming bans the use of synthetic fertilizers and pesticides, and requires certification bodies to certify producers based on a set of production standards,” Hunnes says. “(It) tends to depend more on healthy living systems, utilizing biodiversity and recycling nutrients.”

Two young farmers look at the board in the farm field

9. Renewable agriculture

Renewable agriculture, a step beyond sustainable agriculture, aims to produce food with minimal harm to ecosystems, animals or humans. It is often organic or semi-organic.

“Regenerative agriculture has been proposed as a solution to the environmental diseases of conventional agriculture by reducing, if not eliminating completely,” says Houns. “The use of fertilizers rich in phosphorous, nitrogen and other toxic chemicals harmful to the environment and health.”

10. Renewable energy

according to National Resource Defense Council (NRDC), Renewable Energy, is often referred to as clean energy, “It comes from natural sources or processes that are constantly replenished.” For example, the sun and the wind.

What do you think?

Written by Joseph

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