Updated: Mar 18
How do we find the best solutions to the universal problems we are faced with? Sustainability is more about the attempt than it is about the end result because it is often the case that the "best" or most sustainable to do things hasn't been discovered yet.
In terms of your business, sustainability is more about making informed decisions and cutting consumption in places you can control than it is about finding the ideal "net zero" solution. Realistic implementation of sustainability is about small percentages applied to much larger ideas.
If we can keep our decision making process grounded, we have the ability to make real changes over time that will result in significant, measurable, and valuable savings. If we frame all of our decisions only in terms of a singular end goal, it becomes significantly more difficult to find the right path. Small decisions, small reductions, and realistic goals are the key to reducing our environmental impacts and saving money.
Contrary to popular belief, it is NOT about Consistency.
It's about the pursuit of Betterment through Cognitive Dissonance.
Consistency is about doing the same thing over time in an unchanging manner. While this may earn riches, and buy all the fancy things, it does not make for the best life or the happiest circumstances in every case.
Some of the happiest people on earth live outside of the building, let alone "on the ground floor."
Sustainability demands betterment of oneself, and not necessarily through monetary means. You can't get better if you just do the same thing over and over and never try to understand the whole picture. Life is about a great deal more than the bright shiny objects people have. It's about care and concern for your community and the people who are close to you.
In order to build better buildings, in support of better community, we need to refocus on HOW we build them.....
More sustainable structures must come from innovation AND a frame of mind that is incorporated into the structure of the PLAN even before the building is constructed.
As a business, if you aren't innovating in the marketplace, then you're falling behind the curve of sustainability. However, how is one supposed to constantly innovate? when is it good enough?
In most cases, just finding those small things can make a big difference over time. Don't take tools and resources for granted. Be open and agreeable, and accepting of new possibilities and points of view. Who knows, maybe you'll end up in a much better place than before. with or without the money.