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By John R. Ehrenfeld

The built international, more and more conscious of “inconvenient truths” approximately worldwide warming and sustainability, is popping its consciousness to attainable remedies—eco-efficiency, sustainable improvement, and company social accountability, between others. yet such measures are mere Band-Aids, they usually may very well do extra damage than stable, says John Ehrenfeld, a pioneer within the box of business ecology. during this deeply thought of ebook, Ehrenfeld demanding situations traditional understandings of “solving” environmental difficulties and provides a extensively new set of suggestions to achieve sustainability. The book is based upon this new definition: sustainability is the prospect that people and different existence will flourish on the earth perpetually. There are hindrances to this hopeful imaginative and prescient, in spite of the fact that, and overcoming them would require us to remodel our habit, either separately and jointly. Ehrenfeld identifies troublesome cultural attributes—such because the never-ending intake that characterizes smooth life—and outlines useful steps towards constructing sustainability as a mind-set. by way of targeting the “being” mode of human lifestyles instead of at the unsustainable “having” mode we dangle to now, he asserts, a sustainable international is inside of our achieve. (20080930)

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Awareness that one is part of the problem gets lost. Responsibility for fixing the world will be seen as somebody else’s, most likely the government’s or some unseen industrial innovator’s. But it is not only technology that erodes responsibility. The dominant idea of a “free market” that maximizes the collective happiness by the working of an invisible hand leaves any moral outcome entirely to chance. ”16 This brief critique of modern life raises serious questions about the way we live in the affluent, technologically modern world.

I begin with a new and distinctive definition of sustainability: the possibility that human and other life will flourish on the planet forever. Flourishing is the key to a vision of a sustainable future, and this way of conceptualizing sustainability connects to every kind of audience I have addressed. ” Immersion in the modernist cultural paradigm has disaffected human beings in three critical domains of living. • • • The human, arising out of our (lost) sense of what it is to be a human being, The natural, arising out of our (lost) sense of our place in the natural world, and The ethical, arising out of our (lost) sense of responsibility for our actions and our relationships to others.

Thus pollutants removed from air and water ended up in landfills. Lawmakers ignored the laws of nature, especially the conservation of mass law, which would have indicated that this reductionist approach was doomed to failure from the start. We cannot attain sustainability by following that path. Only a holistic stance can get us there. Lewis Carroll wrote that finding a way to make Humpty-Dumpty’s shell whole is a great challenge, but that is what it will take to turn us from the unsustainable path of addictive consumption and reductionist solutions to the problems (plural) that crop up in our individual and collective lives.

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