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GLOBAL ISSUES OF THE 21st CENTURY

TASK: 3
TASK TITLE: Sustainable development in a dynamic world

Submitted by: Savulescu Madalina Cristina & Meray Yuzeirova


Country: Romania & Bulgaria
Study field: HANTAL (HWB)
Number on the name list: 96 & 9

Name of the Guest Lecturer: Kristof Dewaele


Name of the Coordinator: Eveline Le Roy

1. What is your opinion about changing the mentality of


society towards a more sustainable world? What is
the role of the individual, government, education?
People, communities and even companies both big and small, around the world are
becoming aware that our current way of living in the short run, already for many, and in the
long run, for many others, is unsustainable. After two decades of talk about sustainability and
sustainable development, it appears easier to identify what is unsustainable than to identify
what is to be sustainable. What is clear by now is that to break deeply entrenched,
unsustainable patterns (assumptions, behavior, and values) requires a new kind of thinking
inspired and informed by powerful learning processes that simultaneously lead to individual
and collaborative action and transformation.
Sustainable living is a living in a way in which we can continue to do so, as if we are
going to live forever. To support and sustain our world we need to keep it as healthy as
possible by protecting and sustaining wildlife, plants, ecosystems and habitats because all
these things are connected and they each need each other for support.
I believe sustainability is generally understood to mean something along the lines of not
consuming resources faster than their production and not polluting the environment in an
irreversible way. These resources may be environmental, economic or indeed societal. Many
people believe they are living sustainably because they are doing better than others around
them by for example separating their rubbish for recycling more than others or riding a
bicycle to work rather than driving. How do we know if we are doing enough?
Often, people suggest that they are not prepared to live sustainably as individuals until
there is a collective movement with those around them doing the same; otherwise there is a
feeling of self-sacrifice with little notable impact whilst those around them continue to live in
relative luxury. Moreover, I think that responsibility is often transferred when it is said that
we need the development of centralized systems before we can live a fully sustainable
lifestyle. For example, it is often asked Why should we avoid using our car if the bus and
railway systems are so inadequate?
Developing education is a necessity in the age of globalization and the knowledge
society. Todays society asks a lot of us. The world has become smaller and yet more
complex, we have access to more information than even before and yet we are left with the
feeling that we are drowning in information gasping for knowledge. If we speak all the time
about development, we cant have the development without education. Is needed to
understand that when we talk about education, it means, that in education scheme, must
include all the actors. We need to work effectively with others in very challenging
environments at work and in our private life and we need to be good communicators in and

between different cultural settings both at home and abroad. Tourism cannot develop without
education. So, encouraging tourism education is one of the things that local government can
do. Local governance can plan different support schemes for all youth, which study tourism
education, have good results, and turn back, in their birthplace. Learning is an integral part of
the public policy process and consequently indicator of sustainable development.

2. What pathways/solutions do you see to reach this


goal?
If we want to live in a more sustainable world we should start by switching to bio/ organic
products in our everyday life. We can start by replacing our regular cleaning products with
organic ones especially if we have children or pets because organic cleaning products don`t
contain harmful and toxic ingredients. These organic items could be seen as expensive at first but
in reality they are very concentrated and you only need small amount each time you clean so
eventually they are more inexpensive alternative and better for you. Then we can change our diet
by adding more and more healthy alternatives to our meals to the point when we eat only
organic/ bio food. Of course this is not possible for everyone in the world but we can start with
baby steps, for example to eat only season fruits and vegetables and buy them locally. In this way
we are feeding our bodies with different types of food depending on the season and we support
local farmers which is the best decision you can make.
Another way to more sustainable world is to put smaller plates at buffets and decrease the
height of drinking glasses with just 0.5 cm. With smaller plates people are more selective with
what they put in their plates which results in major waste reduction in food. Besides reducing
food waste this method can also help people who want to control their weight and get fit. With
the smaller glasses people drink less fizzy drinks and alcohol which again results in waste
reduction in liquid and is also good for us.
When the weather is good we can choose the bicycle over a car especially for short distances.
The bike has no expenses and it`s good for our body and staying in shape, it`s a great way to see
the city or just to go for a ride to relax after a long day at work. If this is not your way of
travelling or when you have to go far away, you can always choose the Eco drive principle or at
least share the car with other people going the same direction. This way of shared travelling is
not only good for the environment but for your social life too, you meet new people and make
new memories.
Another thing we can do in order to live more sustainably is not to waste the water in our
everyday use. For example we should take shorter showers because we will be as clean in 10
minutes as in 30 minutes, it`s just a matter of habit. Here are some little changes that can make

huge difference not only in your water bills but also on the environment: don`t let the water run
all the time when you are brushing your teeth, doing the dishes and when you are in the shower.
Many people leave their lights on even during the day which is a big mistake, we simply
don`t need artificial light during the day. And also mixing natural with artificial light is very bad
for your eyes. We should start to think about the little things like that because they have a huge
impact on the environment. Also it`s better to write and read on daylight. The sun light plays an
important role on people`s mood, it`s proven that in countries with more hours of sunshine
people are happier.

REFERENCES
http://www.anl.gov/downloads/brochure-solutionssustainable-world
http://www.google.be/books?
hl=ro&lr=&id=TYVqxsYkgEMC&oi=fnd&pg=PA7&dq=chan
ging+the+mentality+of+society+towards+a+more+sust
ainable+world&ots=4Y_2_zC3T_&sig=5h24MaWxm2q2Fh
EIv5ZX5ve3PrA&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=changing
%20the%20mentality%20of%20society%20towards%20a
%20more%20sustainable%20world&f=false
http://academics.holycross.edu/files/sociologyanthropolog
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http://www.imeche.org/knowledge/industries/energyenvironment-and-sustainability/news/SustainableLifestyles