At a time when technology takes up so much space in our lives, we, as humanity, are still helpless in the face of natural disasters, climate changes and epidemics, and we are saddened by feeling inadequate.
So many inventions and innovations are being made, we clean our homes with the help of robots, we make them prepare our coffees and meals and we can bring all the markets to our doorstep without even getting up from our seats, but we still suffer from cancer, epidemics, earthquakes, floods and fires, and we cannot protect living beings against them. The worst part is that we cannot foresee these disasters and cannot take adequate precautions.
Because of all these, we should devote a little more of our risk analysis to evaluating the risks that the world is facing due to climate change and look for ways to use technology and innovation activities to protect the right to life, which is our top priority, rather than adding comfort to our daily lives. Of course, not only us, but all countries and non-governmental organizations should join hands, adapt the measures that should be taken to the age of technology and do so as if preparing for a global war.
With all these concerns, we should all focus on what it means to create a sustainable life, read about it and contribute to the activities in this field by increasing our sharing. In this article, I wanted to share some humble notes in order to raise awareness on the subject.
First of all, the concepts
What is sustainability?
Sustainability, by its most common definition, is ensuring mankind’s survival while maintaining continuity of production and diversity. In other words, it is our ability to meet our own needs without compromising the needs of future generations. That is to say, it is to create not only an individual but also a social vision in order to use resources in an efficient and recyclable manner, without saying “let me consume, let me live in prosperity and let the future generations take care of themselves”.
What are types of sustainability?
Although the main ones are known in fields such as agriculture, architecture and textile, sustainable innovations are also seen in many different areas according to the examples of innovations.
What are the components of sustainability?
- Environmental protection
- Economic growth
- Social development
What is aimed?
It is aimed to eradicate poverty, increase prosperity and thus leave a more livable ecosystem to the future generations.
Concerning sustainability, world leaders from 193 countries came together in 2015 under the umbrella of the United Nations, set some development goals and presented them in a report.
These goals, which are expected to be achieved by the year 2030, have been determined as follows. (https://unstats.un.org/sdgs/indicators/database/)
Goal 1. End poverty in all its forms everywhere.
Goal 2. End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture.
Goal 3. Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages.
Goal 4. Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all.
Goal 5. Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls.
Goal 6. Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all.
Goal 7. Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all.
Goal 8. Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all.
Goal 9. Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and foster innovation.
Goal 10. Reduce inequality within and among countries.
Goal 11. Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable.
Goal 12. Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns.
Goal 13. Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts.
Goal 14. Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development.
Goal 15 Protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, and halt and reverse land degradation and halt biodiversity loss.
Goal 16. Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels.
Goal 17. Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the Global Partnership for Sustainable Development.
Countries that have adopted these goals have included these goals in their development plans, and accordingly have strived and are striving to ensure that the project work carried out is in alignment with these goals.
In this regard, it will be useful to give some examples of innovations that have contributed to sustainability recently.
Smog Free Project: This construction named Smog Free Tower is 7 meters high and at its peak performance, cleans 30,000 m3 of air per hour. Tower campaigns have been launched in South Korea, China, the Netherlands, Mexico, and Poland.
An autonomous solar balloon bringing electricity to disaster zones: This balloon named Zéphyr, in addition to being incorporated into scientific missions such as observing wild life and measuring air quality, can be used to promote coordination during a disaster.
Air carbon: This innovation, which is a sustainable plastic type, is cost-effective as it is not made from oil like the other plastics, and every step of its production and use is fully green and sustainable.
Solar glass: Solar glass will be able to capture and store solar energy and according to the researches conducted, the existing usable window space will be enough to power a full 40% of the energy requirement of the United States using solar glass.
Growing tomatoes with the help of mirrors in the desert: By reflecting the sun’s rays at appropriate angles with mirrors, Sundrop Farm in Australia gets more out of the sunlight and grows its tomatoes more sustainably.
Supply of potable water from fog in arid regions: The Moroccan foundation Dar Si Hmad and the German Water Foundation jointly started the project named CloudFisher, in which they condense and purify the fog in funnels and supply potable water to the households.
All these examples undoubtedly reveal that there is no limit to creativity and the importance of technological developments contributing to our future.
I believe that as long as the number of countries, whose focus is on future generations and the aim of keeping the world a livable place, increases, start-ups, entrepreneurs or leading companies of the business world encouraged by these countries will give importance on business development not only with commercial concerns but also with a concern for the future.