• Hello everyone, in this article, we will tell you about sustainability, which is a very important and popular topic today. You can find many topics such as what is sustainability, its examples and its components in our article. Happy reading everyone…

What is Sustainability?

If we talk about it as a definition, it is to ensure the continuity of production and diversity in order for the life of human beings to be permanent. In other words, we can obtain the resources we need without stealing from the next generation and without sacrificing anything at the same time. However, it should be noted that there is no universal definition. While ensuring the continuity of production, diversity and consumption, it means being continuous both socially and ecologically.

Sustainability is a concept that most people have heard of and more or less people have a few knowledges. However, the most wrong aspect of this situation is that it only gives an ecological message to people. Sustainability is much more than that. What is meant is that it is a “holistic” approach that should evaluate the welfare level from many perspectives, rather than as much as possible.

We will talk about its components in the continuation of the article, but if we explain it one last time from a general point of view, it is a concept, even a way of life, that emerged to leave a sustainable world with ecological, economic and social conditions to future generations.


When Did the Concept of Sustainability Emerge?


If we look at when this concept emerged after defining the sustainability, this concept first entered our lives through the report titled “Our Common Future” published in 1987 by the World Commission on Environment and Development working under the United Nations.

If we talk about the report in general terms, it is a report written in order to find the solution of some problems caused by rapid industrialization and population growth, and also to warn that if not taken seriously, the problems will get worse. A large community took this report seriously and recognized the extent of the problems. But of course, unfortunately, the concept of sustainability was brought to life with the ozone hole case caused by human activity on Antarctica, which was detected for the first time in 1983.

The definition of sustainability defined by the report is as follows; Humanity has the ability to make development sustainable by meeting daily needs without compromising nature’s ability to respond to the needs of future generations.


What are the Components/Principles of Sustainability? Sustainability Examples

As we mentioned above, people who know little about sustainability or hear it for the first time think that this issue is only about the ecological aspect. However, sustainability consists of 3 main components. This concept is a concept that should be taken holistically with ecological, economic and social aspects.

Sustainability has 3 basic components and these components are; environmental protection, economic growth and social development. In order to ensure sustainability, these concepts should be managed in a balanced and harmonious manner.

Component One: Protecting the Environment

Sustainability tells us to protect the environment, not to pollute, and to use resources in the most accurate and smart way possible. Even though protecting the environment seems like a favor we do to nature, if we continue to destroy and consume at this rate, we will understand that it is human beings, not nature, who are fragile at the end of the work. So how do we protect the environment?
-Reducing the carbon footprint
– By making good waste management
-Ensuring sustainable use of resources in production
– Conserving biodiversity
– By saving energy and water
We can give examples such as

Second Component: Economic Growth or Development

Sustainability focuses on giving people a more comfortable economic life without neglecting the first component, protecting the environment. If people increase consumption, they will not suffer economically and try to prevent poverty. To give an example of this situation:
– By making green investments
-Innovation and R&D
– By doing fair trade
-Creating sustainable finance
By adopting the circular economy
We can give examples such as

Component Three: Social Development

Sustainability supports ensuring that all the needs of the society (education, health…) reach a sufficient and satisfactory point. In addition to strengthening communication between people, it also wishes people to achieve their goals. If you ask how we can achieve this situation:
– Preserving social justice
– By providing equality of opportunity
-Maintaining gender equality
– Raising community awareness
We can give examples such as

Why Is Sustainability Important?

We know that all living things are connected and constantly interacting with each other, and all living things are part of the ecosystem. If even a small part of this whole being is damaged, all the remaining parts are also damaged. Even though it seems that there is no connection between some living things or systems, there are definitely connections in an indirect and complex way. Undoubtedly, we humans are doing the damage we are talking about. So we harm ourselves. Nature is a self-renewing system, but as human beings, our rate of harming nature is higher than the recovery rate of nature. For this reason, it is difficult to ensure that the system chains in nature continue unharmed.

Sustainability guarantees the continuity of the system, protects ecosystems and increases our quality of life. It guarantees the welfare of the society. Thanks to the good and planned use of resources, it prepares a more livable and safe environment. So how do these plans reflect on our lives?

Sustainability is a very difficult task. The population is increasing, the demands are increasing, the technology is developing, and together with this, we need to manage all these works by considering the sustainability components. To do this, for example, we can make small touches to our daily life.

For example, we can do this by producing enough products without harming the nature, reducing the carbon footprint and energy waste at the production stage, and supporting sustainable agricultural practices and sustainable restaurant business to save on an individual basis. Dilara Koçak, one of the first names that comes to mind when it comes to sustainability, gives an example on this subject: “We all try to eat healthy, for example, we sometimes consume chia seeds. However, the carbon footprint of chia seeds is very large, we can use buckwheat instead. Thus, we consume a product that has a low carbon footprint and is healthy.”

In other words, people should know the importance of sustainability and fulfill their responsibilities. First of all, individuals should embrace the importance of sustainability and set an example for the society by changing their daily habits such as lighting, heating, cleaning and even nutrition, and thus contribute to the future.

What is Sustainable Development? 17 Global Goals

We need a system that recognizes the importance of humans, the rest of life, nature, and protects it from harm as they continue to grow. Undoubtedly, sustainability is the best development model for this. Although this structure may seem very abstract and impossible, we have already embodied them under a task list, thanks to the international community: Sustainable Development Goals (Global Goals).


These aims that lead us to the right path; End Poverty, End Hunger, Health and Quality Life, Quality Education, Gender Equality, Clean Water and Sanitation, Accessible and Clean Energy, Decent Work and Economic Growth, Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure, Reducing Inequalities, Sustainable Cities and Communities, Responsible Production and Consumption, Climate Action, Life in Water, Life on Terrestrial, Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions, Partnerships for Purposes.

The extent of the damage we have done to the world is also revealed before our eyes. As stated in the 6th Evaluation Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which is the most comprehensive report of recent years and described as the ‘red alert’ for humanity, the biggest cause of the climate crisis is human. If we don’t change or embrace sustainability, the global temperature will exceed the critical threshold of 1.5oC in the next 20 years. This means that not only the standard of living of future generations, but all of humanity is at risk. We need to start work immediately. Both as individual, community and corporate workplaces. When we say corporate workplaces, we can think of companies. They must do this both for the universe and for themselves. This benefits all sides.

What are the benefits of sustainability to companies?

First, sustainability increases the company’s brand value, trust and reputation. These three concepts are indispensable for the company and are the shield that protects the company in crisis situations. Therefore, if the social and environmental damages of companies that do not implement sustainability are detected, they may be excluded by the society.

Another benefit is that it extends the life of the company. The biggest goal of sustainability is to invest in the future. Investing in the future, the company also protects its future and increases the life expectancy of its facilities.

Another benefit is to attract qualified workforce to the company and increase the motivation of the employees. In this period when companies compete to attract qualified workforce, companies that have adopted sustainability practices come to the fore. These companies have higher prestige in the eyes of qualified employees. Today, qualified employees prefer to work in companies that match their personal values.

There are some other benefits like this. For example, reduced costs in the medium and long term, easier access to capital, new business opportunities, innovative product and service development…

For our previous article: What are Business Plans? Inspirational Business Model Examples


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