Why it's Important to Look AheadMay 19, 2021 · Aaron Burr
You’ve probably noticed by now that at LastObject, we’re pretty picky. Picky about the materials we use, picky about the products we are trying to replace, and picky about which items are worth replacing with a less wasteful alternative.
At first glance, with a knee jerk reaction, it’s easy to opt for an alternative to a wasteful single use item with something that really isn’t much better.
Sure, opting for a 🧻paper alternative to a plastic single use product may seem better, or may even be better, but then we take a look at that decision on a worldly scale. Let’s take that decision and expand it to eight billion people, and now it seems that paper (or many other “eco friendly” alternatives) aren’t really better. Instead, these alternatives end up creating unsustainable extraction of valuable 🌲resources that we don’t possess on a sustainably scalable level.
Back to the future
Let’s take that paper alternative and place those actions into the future: how does it look? Is replacing the extraction of oil with the extraction of trees and 🐿forests really a better alternative that will lead us to a sustainable world? Not really, right?
This is why LastObject didn’t just create single use paper or wood versions of cotton swabs, that wood (get it?) defeat the purpose. This is why, whenever possible, it is better to reduce and use products that can be reused over and over again.♻️
Sadly, we as individuals and as a society won’t be able to 💵buy our way out of climate change and into a sustainable future. We won’t be able to just switch our brands to companies that market themselves as eco friendly. We will have to switch to companies who have the environment woven into their existence, but we will also have to change our actions.
We will have to reduce some things in our lives, even if those things we are reducing are way more sustainable than they are today.
Thinking ahead helps illuminate the truth
Just as if we switch to a more eco friendly product we will still have to reduce our use of it or make it reusable, energy is a good example of something big we will have to change. Even if we completely switched over to energy sources like wind, solar, and hydro, there are still plenty of environmental costs to mining and processing the materials required for ⛏renewable energy sources.
Everything, and everyone, has a footprint on the environment. It's important we acknowledge those footprints even though they haven't been made so 🔦apparent by the general public.
This is why thinking ahead into the future and on a greater scale is so important. When we look at things this way we can better understand the necessity of reducing our consumption of material goods, energy, and reducing our waste. And simply making our processes better.
Of course, we have issues that we must contend with right here right now, today. And focusing all of our ⚡️energy (okay last time i promise) on something like...energy consumption, won’t really help our immediate problems of sea level rise, severe weather, and so forth. The ‘right now’, is also important.
Strike a balance
Whether we are making decisions as individuals, or even businesses, if we don’t consider our actions on a global scale, or which can be made seven generations into the future, we will quickly get lost in changes that are popular, but may not be very helpful. Or worse, changes that are pushed by individuals or companies for the wrong reasons that may actually harm the 🐛environment.
It’s true, life is happening right here right now. And we have our fair share of problems to solve right here right now as well. But if we don’t consider the implications that our actions will have years down the line, and generations down the line, then we will be making the same mistakes our 🗓ancestors have made before us.
Helping the planet, solving our waste problem, and climate change are all such complex issues especially when we consider what we have to think about now vs later down the line. 😩It can get overwhelming when we add up all of the issues we are facing, but this is all the more reason for us to come together as a global collective to solve them along with the issues we will be facing in the future. All while changing our actions to better affect said future.
It may sound picky to say some things are worth it and others are not. But, we simply don’t have the time and energy to waste on actions and changes that aren’t worthwhile and may even end up hurting us in the end. It’s okay to be picky, and it’s okay not to take part in whatever sustainable change is currently in the spotlight. We as individuals have to take actions that are right for our lives. And we as businesses, communities, and society have to make decisions that have the best impact while making the most logical sense.
With this, we can create a better now...while building and preparing for a better future. 💚