By: Matthew Wilking
I would feel as though I have violated your cerebral impulses if I did not give you a glimpse into my life before laying down these five reasons why contributing to this movement towards a more sustainable future is the only solution to our global climate crisis.
My mind wanders, frequently, wonderfully, into the abyss of potential cultural changes while still entertained by my personal struggles to practice sustainability. My brain ventures everywhere; from thinking about how we could solve the terrifying conflicts that have plagued the inhabitants of the Middle East, to which beer I’d like to crack open to absolve my emotions on the matter. I speak my mind without any hesitation.
So without any further ado, my TOP FIVE reasons why you should be thinking about the sustainability movement.
You know, besides the whole moral obligation thing.
1. WE ARE IN THE MIDDLE OF THE LARGEST MASS EXTINCTION IN THE HISTORY OF EVER.
2. I’M NOT FUCKING WITH YOU.
We are killing off animals at an unprecedented rate, which seems pretty cool, like some sort of record. However; species are vanishing off the earth at a rate greater than that of the Cretaceous-Tertiary period. That translates to humans having a more disastrous impact on this planet in our measly 6,000 years of civilization than several mile-wide asteroids pulverizing through our atmosphere and wiping out the entire race of dinosaurs and close to 50% of marine life. Almost 800 species of wildlife have been decimated because of our actions (habitat destruction, pollution, human overpopulation, invasive species, and overharvesting).
3. YOU WILL FEEL HEALTHIER AND LESS GUILTY
Imagine a word in which we no longer eat any processed food, let alone the disgusting excuse for nourishment that we call ‘fast food’. I’m going to let that soak in for a moment… A fully sustainable society will only provide products from purely natural ingredients. Imagine how much better you will feel, breathe, and act when you are ingesting what was intended by nature.
“You probably wouldn’t think of eating a Big Mac as contributing to your carbon footprint but the intensive resources required to make just a standard cheeseburger, from growing the wheat to make the buns to feeding the cattle, and eventually their slaughter, and even the energy required to pickle the cucumbers, the resulting consumption is phenomenal, converting to CO2 emissions of somewhere between 1 – 3.5 kg (and that’s not taking into account the methane produced by the cow itself).” – One Green Planet
Eliminating fast food from our diets will not only increase our mood, considering that fast food undermines people’s ability to experience happiness from savoring pleasurable experiences, but it would also eliminate 40% of littering by our society.
Learn more about the harmful environmental effects of the Fast Food Industry Here: http://www.onegreenplanet.org/animalsandnature/10-ways-fast-food-is-destroying-the-world/
4. WE BREATHE THE DELICIOUS EXCREMENT OF TREES
(and we repay them for providing us with a vital life source by chopping them down…)
There is a radical scientific theory that human beings breathe oxygen and release carbon dioxide, and that trees breathe in that very same carbon dioxide while releasing more oxygen so we can continue living.
*Editor’s note: this is a fact, Matt is just sarcastic.
So how is cutting down enough trees to cover the expanse of Panama on a yearly basis still accepted in such an ‘advanced’ society? Are we so ignorant that we still don’t understand that the rainforests will be nothing but a memory in less than 100 years if we continue our greediness? Not only do these trees support life through their oxygen supply, but they also help us reduce the effects of climate change by converting the CO2 from our transportation emissions into oxygen as well. But we continue to make pulp out of them.
The United States has less than 5% of the world’s population but consumes more than 30% of the world’s paper.” – http://www.conserve-energy-future.com
Companies looking to integrate sustainable practices should look into local printers that use non toxic ink and post consumer waste paper. Using post-consumer paper waste reduces the need to cut down more trees. Better yet, go digital.
Learn more about global warming and deforestation here: http://environment.nationalgeographic.com/environment/global-warming/deforestation-overview/
5. WHEN IT ALL SEEMS TO BE TOO MUCH, YOU CAN STILL GRAB A BEER.
When you’re trying to live a sustainable lifestyle, the ignorant unsustainable actions of our collective species can become overbearing. When this happens, grab a beer. Seriously. Drink your frustrations away. Grab a growler (a 64oz glass jug) and head to a bar, or anywhere with your favorite craft beer on tap.
Growlers bring you one step closer to becoming a Master of Re-Use Culture. Through reusing your glass jug instead of using your dollar to vote for 6 pack cans of beer tethered in plastic., you’re helping to reduce the amount of waste producing from packaging materials.
You’ll have to forfeit some coin for the sweet elixir, but afterwards you can sit back and ponder other ways of making your existence beneficial to future generations of all species while getting that warm feeling in your belly. Is it the beer or the feeling of good karma approaching? We may never know.
Just know somewhere, somehow, I’ll be doing the same thing. Cheers.