Debunking 3 sustainability misconceptions

Our partnership with our parent company, Rohn Industries, means that we are serious when we talk about making the earth a better place. Making an effort to live more sustainably is one way that we all can make a difference in the effort to keep the earth healthy for future generations.

In recent years, however, sustainability has become somewhat of a buzz word. Wrapped up with other terms such as living green, recycling and zero-waste lifestyles, it can be difficult to remember exactly what sustainability is.

Defined simply, sustainability is the idea that goods and services should be produced and used in ways that avoid using nonrenewable resources or damaging the environment. “Development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs” is the way the United Nations World Commission on Environment and Development defined the term in 1987.

Depending upon what you’ve read about adopting sustainable practices as an individual or corporation, it may seem like a big undertaking. But don’t let misinformation scare you away from doing your part for the planet. We’ve taken a moment to debunk a handful of common misconceptions to explain why we believe sustainability should be something every company aims for.

Misconception 1: Sustainability is only about the environment

Though its primary focus is creating a healthier planet, sustainability actually serves an even broader purpose. By lessening their use of energy, larger or more prosperous nations allow for disadvantaged countries to more easily gain access to resources such as clean water, nutritious food and energy. Practicing a sustainable lifestyle also leaves more of these resources for future generations.

Misconception 2: Sustainability is too expensive

While it’s true that some sustainable efforts cost a lot of money upfront, changing to a more sustainable system often saves you money long term. An electric car might have a higher price tag than a regular vehicle but imagine all the money you’ll be saving on gas. Replacing your building’s current toilets with a water efficient toilet will cost you money you would otherwise not be spending, but you’ll use less water with each flush.

Misconception 3: My efforts to practice sustainability won’t make a difference

The world is a large place; it may not seem like one person making a small change in their lifestyle will matter in the grand scheme. If you’re feeling like your efforts are useless, consider these facts from The Boston College Office of Sustainability:

  • One recycled bottle saved enough energy to run a 100-watt bulb for four hours.
  • One recycled bottle causes 20% less air pollution and 50% less water pollution than it does to make a new bottle.
  • A recycled aluminum can is back on the shelf within 60 days.

If you can make a difference by recycling just one aluminum can, think about the positive effects of regularly choosing a reusable grocery bag over a plastic one or using a refillable coffee thermos. Every little bit makes a difference to the planet.

Start your journey toward sustainability by getting in touch with Rohn Industries today to and learn more about their GreenSmart® recycling programs. Or, check out our new fundraising program, #ShredRight4Good, to raise money for your school, church or organization while making the planet a cleaner place for future generations.