On a long-term basis, all systems can carry a very limited number of organisms with them which is defined as the carrying capacity. For human beings, it’s a very complex system as they require food and a bucket full of other resources to sustain themselves on earth and maintain the quality of life. The sustainability of a system depends entirely on the carrying capacity of the system, which has been crossed by exploitation of resources these days, then what begins is the degradation of the environment and it’s continued till they are no looking back and there’s a dead end. Now carrying capacity has two basic components namely
a) Supporting Capacity (the capacity to recreate)
b) Assimilative Capacity (the capacity to withstand in different situations)
Supporting capacity means you have a get together at your home, so you have calculated that 20 people will come. Now those 20 people would eat food and have drinks and biggest of all would require space to stand. If a person isn’t having enough space or enough ingredients to make the food, it would be difficult. Hence the supporting capacity is lower than the requirements and this could make people frown and go away.
Assimilative capacity in the simplest terms is, you had a suitcase which could accommodate clothes of 3 days for 2 people, but you had another plan and stuffed it up with clothes of 4 days of 5 people, so the suitcase exploded at the airport, or you couldn’t close the zip back again. So you filled the bag times more than the assimilative capacity, and it exploded. Therefore when things that are man-made have defined capacities than the resources on EARTH also have some.
So what can we do to reduce our consumption level:
1. Start using refills rather than new products. Instead of buying a bottle of milk or a carton of milk try and find a dairy around your self and spread the word in communities. Using refills is better because you can massively bring down all the extensive that industries do for each new product.
2. Make it a point to wear each piece of cloth you buy at least 50 times and once it’s damaged you use it for cleaning surfaces or other things rather than throwing them away.
3. Start using simpler alternatives like a wooden or a metal clothespin instead of a plastic clothespin, not removing peels from vegetables or fruits, this would help you reduce the waste you generate and would satisfy your hunger sooner.
4. Buy things in bulk when they are cheap. You could reduce the number of trips to the market, save money and prevent wastage of food. You can get more herbs than you usually buy and then make cubes of them by freezing them in oil in an ice tray. This would help you to keep an eye on how much you consume and would help you regulate things in a better way. In a way preserve things
5. Use the digital version of all documents and books you need. It would help in bringing down the use of paper, deforestation would halt, these days e-readers generally support reading of most forms of documents and you can get them in a good deal as well. This would reduce the emissions from manufacturing and transporting paper, there would be lower use of printers and inks used in them would be produced on a lower scale.
6. Use rechargeable cells as much as you can. A normal cell takes 100 years to decompose, while if one can’t totally prevent the use one can definitely use a better alternative.
7. Make things on your own, you can make a herb garden by simply putting the leftover herbs in soil, you can regrow vegetables from their waste part, try it. You need to do this because once we have no resources left we would be finding stuff from the waste only so we should act fast.
Thus the formula for sustainability is that recreation should be higher than consumption always or the levels of using resources should be lower than recreation level and in no case, the changes should go ahead with the assimilative capacity.
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