Consuming ourselves, "The Story of Stuff"


In 1992 the International Green Cross (http://www.gci.ch/) was co founded by Akio and President Mikhail Gorbachev. It’s mission, available on the website above, is to secure a sustainable future for the planet through a much needed paradigm shift. The paradigm shift is the focus of this post, and the focus of the video linked, “The Story of Stuff.” We live in a world of advertising, consumption, and waste. Fashion dictates the level of use an item receives instead of practicability. The video embedded teaches an important lesson of the amount of waste we generate as humans (and specifically people from the United States) and how much of it is unnecessary. A paradigm shift toward reducing consumption and recycling what we do need to use would bring us to a level of waste that would allow the future generations to continue to use our planet’s finite resources. Although developments in technology do allow us to use new resources to fuel our lives and expand the meaning of ‘finite,’ there are still great resources devoted to these developments. Just by using less and disregarding the trends and fleetingness of what is popular we are able to achieve an important goal: sustainability. This word does have a plethora of connotations but it’s important to realize that through the practice of reduction in consumption we not only decrease what we use now, but make more available for those who don’t receive it now and those who will need it in the future. The world has real problems based on inefficient use of scarce resources and the United States is a great model of how to worsen these problems. By watching “The Story of Stuff” we are on our way toward a solution. Ideas are great, but they need to be put into action in order to do anything. I encourage you, reader, to use less today! Keep your computer another year, bring reusable bags to the grocery store, and most importantly, buy less!

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