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Camille Scher

Bigger Problems to Address

For many years there has been lots of controversy over global climate change,

sustainability, greenhouse gasses, etc. and who is to blame for them. Many communities come

together to recycle trash and reuse household items to minimize their own global footprint.

Usually the common people are blamed for depleting the earth's resources, but we are not the

only ones responsible for this.

Corporations are supposed to have responsibilities just as people do. Milton Friedman in

his essay, “The Social Responsibility of Business Is to Increase Profits,” he explains that “A

corporation is an artificial person and in this sense may have artificial responsibilities, but

‘businesses’ as a whole cannot be said to have responsibilities…” I believe any corporation or

business should have a much higher obligation to use renewable resources and strive for

sustainability among their enterprise.

Businesses and corporations aim for success and try to increase profit to the best of their

abilities. That means increase of income and a greater expansion of their business through:

buildings, factories, employees. The more they grow, the higher human demand for their

products. Producers are usually protected from environmental costs and justice rather than the

consumer. There is so much a consumer can do to cut their global footprint through recycling

and emission output by getting fuel efficient cars and shifting their lifestyle; though, it is not all

up to regular communities. The companies are also to blame for our sustainability problems.

From, “Our Common Future: From One Earth to One World,” the United Nations talks

about “the ways in which sustainability is a global issue and the role that worldwide

organizations… might play in creating a more sustainable world” (92). The author emphasizes
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out technological growth, but examines the sacrifices of such growth. We can produce and move

goods around our earth faster than ever before, but we also have depleting resources and high

pollution. The author tells, “We see instead of the possibility for a new era of economic growth,

one that must be based on policies that sustain and expand the environmental resource base”

(93).

Consumption of nonrenewable resources and the burning of fossil fuels has caused

gradual global warming and has shifted natural ecosystems for many years. On top of that we

continue to wipe lands of forests for geoengineering, fracking, and farming across the planet.

Damaging agriculture above and below land from placement of toxic substances above and

below ground. The author of, “Our Common Future,” proposes that we need “new forms of

international cooperation of these issues that will influence policies and events in the direction of

needed changes; and to raise the levels of understanding and commitment to action of

individuals, voluntary organizations, businesses, institutes, and governments” (95). So not only

are the individuals of society held accountable for reducing their own footprint, but corporations

and governments are held responsible as well.

Citizens all around the world have come together to clean up past generations mistakes in

attempt to improve air quality, water quality, and create an overall better planet for future

generations. We have attempted to rebuild natural lands and repopulate forests and ecosystems. I

believe we need to not wait until after the fact, but try to create a better world to live in now, or

else it might be too late to rebuild what we have destroyed.

As we advance in technological growth we need to become globally aware of what could

come of our decisions. Not only to people need to become aware of things such as runoff,
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greenhouse gasses, and deforestation; we need to realize where most of the emissions are coming

from and what corporations and businesses use in order to make certain products for consumers.

By placing laws and enforcing cooperation of them to better our earth, we might just be able to

slowly restore our planet.