Yet Another Attempt to Define Sustainability

Next to "Green" it is perhaps the most overused and misunderstood word in the envirobiz; We previously asked "Is Sustainability Over"; Bill McDonough thought it over years ago when he said "We still have people talking about 'sustainability'! Nothing is more boring. Are you proud if your marriage is 'sustainable'?"

But that hasn't stopped Eric Zencey from taking a shot at it in Orion Magazine.Zency notes:

THE TERM HAS BECOME so widely used that it is in danger of meaning nothing. It has been applied to all manner of activities in an effort to give those activities the gloss of moral imperative, the cachet of environmental enlightenment. "Sustainable" has been used variously to mean "politically feasible," "economically feasible," "not part of a pyramid or bubble," "socially enlightened," "consistent with neoconservative small-government dogma," "consistent with liberal principles of justice and fairness," "morally desirable," and, at its most diffuse, "sensibly far-sighted."

But then goes on to try and figure it out, in eighteen points, the last of which is:

NO, THERE IS NO PRECEDENT for what we are struggling to create. We have to make it up ourselves.

Read all eighteen at Orion Magazine

Tags: William McDonough

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