Consumerism is Killing the Planet and It’s Time for Change

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Sustainability is the very act of upholding something. In environmental terms, which is all you hear about these days, sustainability is the ability to not invoke harm upon the environment. Sustainability is the act of not depleting an area of its natural resources that affect the overall well being of the planet as a whole.

It has taken the world a long time to realize the true effect it has the environment. For years, and still to this day, industries are pumping millions and millions of gallons of harmful pollutants and chemicals into the air and water supply every day. Electricity is obtained through the use of oil and other materials like coal that give off harmful emissions.

The Disintegrating Ozone Layer

Thanks to aerosol cans and refrigerants, the ozone layer is in a very fragile condition. Ozone Depleting Substances, or ODS are chemicals that are initially safe and stable in the lower regions of the atmosphere, but once they reach the outer layer of the atmosphere, they’re broken down by the ultraviolet light. From that point on, chlorine and bromamine are released into the atmosphere, disintegrating it at a rapid rate.

Plastic in the Ocean

The degradation of the planet does everything but stop from there. Every year, 15%-40% of the world’s plastic ends up in the ocean. This is primarily due to factors such as litter, open dumps, and landfills that aren’t doing their job.

In 2010, 8 million tons of plastic washed onto beaches around the world. That only accounts for 1%-2% of the world’s entire plastic production. Scientists have yet to find out where the remainder of the plastic that is in the oceans goes, and they’re unsure of the ramifications of this on sealife.

It’s evident that it’s not good. The world is on track to increase this problem 10 fold if things aren’t turned around and if efforts to make the world sustainable don’t get catapulted into action.

Food Waste

It’s baffling to hear that 1 in 9 people in the world are starving. It’s even more baffling when this knowledge is coupled with the fact that approximately one third of all the food produced in a year on earth goes to waste. That equates to 1.9 billion pounds. Where does it all go?

What’s interesting to note is that both industrialized and developing countries waste the same amount of food. In industrialized countries, 40% of food is wasted by the consumer and by retailers. In lesser developed countries, 40% is wasted at the post harvest level.

Every person plays a role in this reality. Restaurants that order bulk and can’t work through their food fast enough waste enough food to feed a small village. It’s even worse for “All you can eat” style buffets and resorts that offer never ending food lines where more and more is cranked out, and that which isn’t eaten is thrown out with the trash.

Solutions for a Worldwide Problem

Thankfully, there are resorts and other proactive organizations that are coming at the consumerism issue with an assertive solution. Las Vegas Sands is leading the way by forefronting new technologies and initiatives that aim to make the world sustainable. How are they doing this? In several different ways.

In addition to the problems addressed above, there are 783 million people that don’t have access to clean water. This results in the death of 6-8 million people annually. The Sands recently built 200,000 hygiene kits to combat the clean water issue around the world.

In addition to this, they have also engineered new ways to deal with food waste, they are constantly working to lessen their power usage as well as their water consumption, and they’ve ramped up their recycling efforts.

Sands partners with Clean the World to develop new ways to lessen their impact on the world as a whole. It’s time the rest of the world follows suit. The people must demand change. Other corporations need to partner with similar efforts to reverse the decay that has enveloped the world. If more people don’t take the same initiative, the world along with the entire human race will reap the repercussions.

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