Sustainable Communities (Junior ID-5)

 

Sustainable Communities

Participant ID – 5
Medhajunior, Grade 8th, USA

 Sustainable development is an important concern in the upcoming future. Our planet has been ravaged by pollution and global warming. The world is facing its biggest financial crisis. Tackling these issues now is essential for mankind’s survival. Education, awareness, morality, and the restoring the economy play a major role in this effort. 

Awareness and education is one of the biggest issues when it comes to sustainable development. People must be aware of the social problems around them if they are to come up with solutions. However this is a problem in today’s culture which is steeped in non-stop consumerism. The answer to this is education. Organizations like UNESCO are finding ways to incorporate sustainable development in to the basic curriculum. However, sustainable development is a values driven topic, which cannot only be taught through education, but through parents and life-experiences. For children, establishing a connection with the world around them is the best way to actually learn and care about everything around them. Children also need to make connections around the world to broaden their perspective. The world cannot continue as it is with each nation distant and isolated. When it comes to tackling major problems like the current environmental crisis, it takes more than a single nation to do its part. 

Whether or not the future we dream of becomes a reality, is based largely on the moral underpinnings of the current and next generation. The root of many problems in the current financial crisis is the rampant greed driving large businesses. In our current environment, businesses have started putting profit before all else. By shipping jobs over seas, they’ve earned huge profits, but at the cost of thousands of Americans losing their jobs. Companies save money by pouring its waste in to the ocean instead of disposing it properly. We need to change our perspective from, What can I do for myself, to, What can I do for me and society. I think that it is fair to say, that our current system, based on indiscriminate competition, has failed. Competition is an essential driving force. Without competition, civilization cannot grow. But how far should our competition go? Is it right for us to succeed at the cost of all else? The time has come for a new system. One described by SGI President Ikeda as humanitarian competition, where competition is based on humane values. Where competition is based not on how much money you earn, but by how much you contribute to society. 

The environment plays a key role in sustainable development. At the rate of which the Earth is being damaged due to pollution, and global warming it won’t be much longer until the balance of nature is disastrously tipped. Pollution and global warming are destroying ecologies around the world, changing the balance of nature. Animal habitat is being destroyed. Soon the astounding variety of life on one of the only planets able to sustain life will die out. Energy development is a major issue as well. Fossil fuels and coal, which are major energy sources, badly affect global warming. Nuclear power plants are a solution, but the nuclear waste they produce is difficult to dispose. Wind and solar are good technologies, but they are in a nascent stage. The world needs new sources of energy. We have upset the balance of nature and have tampered with the Earth. Now it is time to restore it.

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