What Are 3 Issues That Impact Sustainability?

Published on:
by Eric Burdon
Image of hands cupping solid and a young plant shoot, with mountains in background
Image by jcomp on Freepik

On top of the various challenges that businesses face in adopting sustainable strategies, sustainability as a whole is facing broader and larger-scale problems. Nevermind the fact that businesses have to spend more money making adjustments and having to educate customers and employees on sustainability, among other things, when sustainability itself is hindered by several major issues.

Below are just three key issues, but keep in mind that there are others that need to be resolved for sustainability to be something more easily achieved.

Featured Article: Top 5 Social Sustainability Examples You Need To Know

Climate Change

The ongoing crisis in our climate makes sustainability efforts all the harder to accomplish. With unusual weather happening all over the world, along with extreme weather and ecosystem disruptions, all of these can affect companies wanting to be sustainable in many different ways, along with consumers. To start, those things alone can affect the materials that are gathered and used for various products.

A simple yet effective example is shoes that can be made with sugarcane. That whole operation can be disrupted if sugarcane wilts and dies from unusual weather or devastating natural disasters.

At this point, we know combating climate change is a matter of changing our overall lifestyles and putting in place other energy alternatives other than coal. There also have to be more restrictions on drilling and fracking.

Featured Article: Efforts to Curb Delhi's Rising Air Pollution

Loss of Biodiversity

A few decades ago, there was not a summer day that went by where you drove a car, and the windshield of that car had ample bugs splattered all over it. Today, there are far fewer bugs to smear over those same windshields.

As small as those bugs may be, those insects are necessary for fueling so much of our world. They at the very least serve as food for other larger creatures, which eventually find their way into being a viable source of food for ourselves (the food chain).

When we tear down trees, overexploit resources, and pollute the planet, these actions impact the various ecosystems that these natural habitats need, and their withering creates a much larger ripple effect. These impact our food security, human health, and ultimately the stability of the planet.

Overall solutions to the loss of biodiversity are things like sustainable resource management, protecting lands, giving lands back to indigenous tribes, and using conservation tactics. But another solution is recognizing this shift and realizing these problems won’t go away and that this too affects how sustainable we can be.

Featured Article: What is the ESG movement all about?

Resource Depletion and Overconsumption

Working in tandem with all of that is the lack of resources and the push for consumption. Even under the brand of sustainable, eco-friendly, or green, there is still an underlying problem with large companies offering sustainable alternatives like wooden forks or paper straws. Those items use up more resources and are still ending up in landfills.

Beyond the dwindling resources, there is also a huge push for overconsumption. While the average person could be conscious of it, efforts to be sustainable are undercut by the fact that the ultra-wealthy emit significantly more emissions than the average person. Even if the average person was being sustainable, we wouldn’t be able to offset the large amount of emissions that these wealthy individuals emit on a daily basis.

Ultimately, addressing this issue would not only involve encouraging the average person to be more sustainable but also pushing for solutions that address the rapidly diminishing resources and the overconsumption that we are seeing from the wealthiest individuals in the world.

Featured Article: What Is The Best Environmental ETF?

Sustainability Faces Many Challenges

Despite the uphill battles that companies and individuals face with being sustainable, there are always opportunities to grow and improve. Challenges will change over time, and at the time, these were some of the most prominent problems faced today. 

Collectively, we will be able to overcome this as we work together.

Follow KnowESG's Featured Articles for more news and views on sustainability and the climate crisis.


Featured Article Headlines

Streamline Your Emissions: Top Carbon Accounting Software Solutions for Efficient Sustainability Tracking

Streamline Your Emissions: Top Carbon Accounting Software Solutions for Efficient Sustainability Tracking

The Rise of Impact Investing: Paving the Way for Positive Social and Environmental Change

The Rise of Impact Investing: Paving the Way for Positive Social and Environmental Change

An Interview with Label Collective founder Julian Roberts on diversity, sustainability and innovation

The 0100 Europe 2024 PE & VC Conference

KnowESG Launching the Premier ESG Marketplace: Unique Place to Find Partners in Sustainability Transition

ESG Voice: Skillfulness Delivered - The Importance of ESG Education

Is Water Sustainable? Understanding the Reality and Solutions for Future Generations

Best Practices to Enhance ESG Reporting Processes and Outcomes

Thematic-ESG Mutual Funds: A Comprehensive Guide for Sustainable Investing

How EU’s Digital Markets Act Changes Big Tech