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The Who, What, When, Where, Why, and How of Sustainability:

Who? You. Yeah, that’s right. You… or maybe I mean to say, EVERYONE. Sustainability is about everyone. Ultimately, sustainability is about everything, but for the time being, let’s say that the Who in this picture is you. Because you are the only person responsible for you, this means that you have power to make changes that you want to see. If you want to save money, that can be up to you so long as you accept the power and responsibility you have. If you choose to avoid thinking about t

What? What do I mean? What am I referring to? What’s the big idea? What’s your angle? What are you roping me into? In this case, the What of sustainability is What you think about. Whether that be your business, your home, your school, your community, your sandwich. Whatever.

When? This is the key part. Right here… RIGHT NOW. Sustainability can be applied to your life right this very second if you want it to. This is harder to explain, but basically imagine this. You have fuel and you need a fire. Where does that come from? What kind of fuel do you need? Remember, fuel can be everything from sleep to actual wood, so keep an open mind on this one. It might help you gain perspective too.

Where? Where did that fuel come from? Where do you want it to take you? This part is where sustainability becomes a big part of it. The place we are and the place we want to go might not be too far apart. The where of sustainability is both a time and a place. Sustainability is where you are now and where you want to be later.

Why? The main “why’s: of sustainability is also the triple bottom line. Social, Environmental, and Financial considerations. The answer to the “why” question should be “because it’s better for me, better for my community, better for the environment, and better for my business”

How? How do we be more sustainable? Well, as long as we remember that sustainability is a goal without a real finish line, we realize that the how of sustainability comes in baby steps. It takes fuel, time, and effort, but with efficiency and sustainability in the forefront of your mind, the How gets easier and easier as we go along. Especially since sustainability can come in so many shapes and sizes.

Little things add up over time to create an awesome opportunity for people and businesses to make big changes. For instance, every piece of paper that you throw away costs about 5 to 6 cents if you compare the cost of a ream of paper to the cost per sheet. But that doesn’t include the shipping costs, the environmental costs, or the cost of the ink that goes onto the page. If you can print two sided, that saves 2 or 3 cents plus incalculable costs on the environment for every page saved. That adds up fast and it truly does have huge savings! Knowing where suppliers source materials from can be huge too! Making educated or informed decisions might be easier than you think!

Thanks for reading! If you make one decisions with sustainability in mind, the fuel it took for me to write this was worth it!

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