Can the Average Person Truly Live 100% Sustainably?

As more awareness is spread about climate change and the vast effect it has had, and will continue to have, on our planet, we in the general population have increased our efforts to slow it down. New media is released everyday to raise awareness of the climate crisis that we are currently in the midst of, such as last month’s release of the Netflix original dark-comedy Don’t Look Up. The film, which depicts a scenario in which a massive meteor is headed towards Earth and, at its arrival, will destroy all of mankind, is a commentary on the current climate crisis.


The popularity of media concerned with the environmental crisis continues to rise, in part sparking confidence for the general public to stand up to corporations and politicians, making our voices heard and rallying for environmental change. Along with this, sustainable living has become a new top priority for many people. 


Due to our battle against environment-ruining corporate entities still being an ongoing one, We in the general population are doing our best to slow down the climate change process by implementing new routines into our lives until we are able to make a bigger impact politically. 


As more and more media relating to the topic emerges, more sustainable versions of our daily products are becoming available to attempt to slow down the massive corporate destruction of our planet. Sustainable clothing brands, makeup lines, skincare, food brands and what-have-you have spiked in popularity over the last couple years. Along with this, needless packaging for many products has been reduced in an attempt to reduce our waste. 


The term “sustainable living”, as defined by the blog Sustainable Jungle, is a practical philosophy that aims to reduce personal and societal environmental impact by making positive changes which counteract climate change and other negative environmental concerns.” Many people, myself included, attempt to integrate this into our lives. Whether it be using reusable shopping bags instead of plastic or making your own compost for your garden and growing your own produce. 


The question, however, is it possible for the average person to live 100% sustainably? The answer to this question can be a little tricky. I believe that, at least in our current society, it’s impossible to live 100% sustainably as an average citizen. 


Although we have made a massive amount of progress when it comes to more sustainable products, these items generally come with a higher price tag, as well as generally not having the convenience factor that non-sustainable items have. 


We also have to take into consideration that many don’t have the means to do things such as grow their own produce, or don’t have access to things like farmers markets, package-free stores, and the like. 


Another thing to take into account is that there are things in our lives that don’t fit into the label of “sustainable” that we are unable to change ourselves. Things such as the heating we use in our homes, the electricity we use everyday, and so many others. Yes, a select few are able to afford the more eco-friendly versions of these things, but those generally come with a massive price tag, and in many places those types of alternatives are not yet allowed or available. 


Although at the moment it seems impossible to live a completely sustainable, waste-free life, we are making a lot of head-way into being able to make it affordable and accessible for the general population. And, we shouldn’t feel bad about ourselves for not living in the best eco-friendly ways. Because, ultimately, we are trying our very best, and until we can finally make big changes in our government, we are working our hardest to save our planet.