3p Series: The Social Side of Sustainability

Sustainability is a poorly defined notion. More often than not—and we’re guilty of this, as well—sustainability is talked about in environmental terms. Be it about a company’s footprint from its data centers or the methodology for reporting, we sometimes miss the other two aspects of the bottom line. What sort of pundits would we be if we didn’t look at the social side of sustainability?

Over the course of this next week, and into the rest of May, we’ll feature stories that have a positive impact on people—both here and abroad. The Social Side of Sustainability series will examine the entrepreneurs, organizations, and innovative ideas that foster sustainable growth in developing nations, as well as economic recovery here in the U.S.

As the global economy continues to falter, what role does social entrepreneurship play in development? What sorts of models are the most effective? And can those same models be applied to disaster-stricken areas like New Orleans in the same way as somewhere like Mumbai? Join us as we explore the people portion of the triple bottom line.

Ashwin is an Associate Editor of Triple Pundit. He recently returned to the Bay Area after living in Argentina, where he wholeheartedly missed the Pacific Ocean. He is a freelance editor and media and marketing consultant.After a brief stint working in the wine world, when not staring blankly at a computer screen, you'll find him working on Anand Confections or at 826 Valencia, where he has been a long-time volunteer.

3 responses

  1. The federal government through the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service is addressing the social side of sustainability through three different, cross-sector behavior change campaigns that address invasive species and pharmaceuticals in the environment: Stop Aquatic Hitchhikers! (http://www.protectyourwaters.net), Habitattitude (http://www.habitattitude.net) and SMARxT Disposal (http://www.smarxtdisposal.net). By using the Blended Value Proposition as our operational strategy, we are engaging citizens to protect the environment through their actions and stimulating entrepreneurs to develop support technologies to reinforce these conservation behaviors.

  2. We have recently brought together a coalition of NGOs in San Diego County to help the San Diego Association of Governments develop the first Sustainable Communities Strategy that California is requiring all MPOs to develop with their regional transportation plans. SB 375 requires that transportation and land use planning be coordinated to reduce green house gas emissions. The goal is to move land use to Smart Growth principles. We want to make sure that the social equity needs are addressed as well.

  3. Energy has become one of the most significant concerns in the 21st century. The need for energy has continued to increase and it has become difficult to meet this demand. Coal is poised to be one of the most important sources of energy but it is facing the challenge of environmental impact. To ensure that coal becomes an important source of energy in the world, it is important to put in place a framework for sustainable coal mining. The government should play bigger roles in regulation of coal mining and ensure environmental impact assessment is carried out first. The government should shut down mines if they continuously ignore the law. Fines are not sufficient deterrents for coal mines to supply with safety standards and protect the people and the planet.

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