In an article by Investopedia, sustainability defined as the potential to maintain a process over a long period of time. Sustainable development is “a constraint upon present consumption in order to ensure that future generations will inherit a resource base that is no less than the inheritance of the previous generation” (Bioprocess Engineering, 2017). The term was also described by the 1987 Bruntland Commission Report as “development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.”
There are four dimensions to sustainable development – society, environment, culture and economy. These pillars imply that in everything humans do, the physical and non-material environment should never be exhausted or extinguished to the point where the future generation will suffer.
Humans continuously destroy and deplete the earth of its beauty and ability to support itself as well as other organisms through activities such as industrialization, heavy usage of natural resources, energy generation, mining, farming, deforestation, and pollution.
Currently in Jamaica, the issue of the Cockpit Country mining is making headlines across various media outlets and platforms, where the citizens of the Accompong territory, close to the SML 173 area, are under constant duress—feeling helpless and isolated as their homes and livelihood is slowly encroached upon by machines. This an example of non-sustainable activity, as though it may provide positive effects/benefits for the economy, it harms the environment the society and the culture of the people especially the Maroons who have called the community their home for many years since the slavery period. In order for any activity to be sustainable, all pillars must be respected as they as interwoven with each other. Mining degrades air quality and soil leaving corrosive mud which cannot be used for farming, and carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide from heavy machinery, which also introduces noise pollution near homes and schools and can even induce respiratory illness when dust is released. This directly disrupts the residents of the area.
Humans need to be more considerate, and a have level of integrity and conservation for others. Environmental laws and protocols should be implemented more heavily for the protection of our Earth. There should be educational public awareness, advocacy and training as the earth does not need us humans to survive. Humanity will perish once all resources have been exhausted therefore the time is now for a change to be made so we can continue to thrive on this planet.
By Aaliyah Campbell
Bioprocess Engineering. (2017). Elsevier. https://doi.org/10.1016/c2015-0-04891-2
Gautam, P., Kumar, S., & Lokhandwala, S. (2019). Energy-Aware Intelligence in Megacities. Current Developments in Biotechnology and Bioengineering, 211–238. https://doi.org/10.1016/b978-0-444-64083-3.00011-7
Henry, P. (2021, October 28). Cockpit Country stakeholders reject NEPA’s mining permit assessment. Loop News; Loop News. https://jamaica.loopnews.com/content/cockpit-country-stakeholders-reject-nepas-mining-permit-assessment
UNESCO. (2015, August 3). Sustainable Development. En.unesco.org. https://en.unesco.org/themes/education-sustainable-development/what-is-esd/sd