Sustainability is not just a buzzword. It is something that will affect us all. Mother earth has the capacity to feed us and keep us comfortable if we treat her right. An angry mother earth on the other had has the ability to burry us all and we have seen examples in some areas in terms of extreme weather, drying rivers, and acceleration of poverty and disease.
There is a lot that can be done though and luckily, a lot is being done already towards mitigating the effects that human activities have on the environment. It is not far fetched to say that modernization, industrialization and manufacturing are the biggest culprits when it comes to messing up with the environment. It would therefore be fair to say that the biggest responsibility to save and sustain it lies with them.
Of course, on an individual capacity we’re also not excused from mistreating the environment. There is a lot that everyone can do at their homes and work places to contribute towards conservation and sustainability. A lot of continued sensitization is required towards this and we have corporates, Government, recycling companies and umbrella bodies like Kenya Association of Manufacturers to guide the way.
Last week, the Kenyan Association of Manufacturers in conjunction with the Ministry of Environment and the Bloggers Association of Kenya had an all too important virtual discussion about the role of industry in driving sustainability, energy efficiency and green growth. This lively discussion that was running under the Twitter hashtag #MovingToBetter had a panel of experts on the sustainability issue and was aired live on BAKE’s Facebook and YouTube. In the panel for last week’s meet up were Phyllis Wakiaga (CEO – Kenya Association of Manufacturers) Dr. Ayub Macharia (Ministry of Environment), Dr. Julius Muia (National Treasury and Akshay Shah of SilAfrica Group.
If things were to be extremely simplified, we would capture the whole sustainability debate in a few words. Manufacturing, consumption and use, and recycling and re-use. Of course there are so many more complexities but that is the general gist of it. Because we really do need to leave mother earth like we found her if not better for future generations to live in and also do the same.
There was a lot to learn. So much so that one felt that the sustainability conversation should be had very often and hardwired into our psyche so that it is something we live with consciously every day.
I tried to capture as much as I could in my tweets which you can have a look at here, as well as on the hashtag as a whole. Bottom line, we really do not have a choice other than to save the earth. For health, for peace, for vibrant economies in this generation and generations to come, we really have to take care of the environment. We can’t sit back, do nothing, and expect good things to come our way.