Encourage community to consume sustainably produced products

Encourage community to consume sustainably produced products

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Sabeena Hassan started this petition to Centre for Environment Education

Sustainable consumption is a systemic challenge. Businesses, governments, civil society and consumers all have the power to affect change, sometimes in ways that are not traditionally perceived to be their role. Consumers may feel a moral responsibility to live sustainably, however they cannot do so without effective support from governments, NGOs and the businesses with which they interact. Businesses, governments and civil
society must be aligned with these values since they depend on the spending and votes of individuals.

There is currently no common understanding of what a sustainable product or lifestyle is. Business may determine the sustainability of a product based on a full life cycle analysis. Retailers, governments and other actors may assess the “sustainability” or “un-sustainability” of a product based on varying disclosure criteria or societal pressure. As a result of this confusion over who determines the sustainability of a product, choices to edit the availability of certain products are often in conflict.
Business, governments and society (including consumers) must work together to define sustainable products and lifestyles. 
This goal requires consumers to rethink their individual consumption patterns and assess the environmental impact of everything that they are consuming. Consumers should be making consumption choices based on how much water, energy, land and raw materials the products and services they are acquiring have used. This will mean, for instance, deciding to eat less processed food and red meat, driving and flying less, buying less clothes, toys, gadgets and other unnecessary good and services.

Producers have a huge responsibility to ensure that their products are sustainably produced, durable and long lasting. Nowadays, consumers are bombarded by a flood of cheaply produced and available products, made out of petroleum-based materials that cannot be reused, repaired or fixed. Many of these products cannot even be recycled or upcycled for other uses. Landfills around the world are overflowing with products that continue to use up the limited vacant land needed for housing and food production. Industries must consider cradle-to-grave practices where their products do not end up in landfills but can be reclaimed back into their production processes.

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