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Frequently Asked Questions About Sustainability

Q: Why become green and sustainable?
A: When becoming green and sustainable, the ultimate goal is not only to help the environment, but to make your business more profitable and successful.


Q:What is sustainability?
A: According to the EPA, sustainability is defined as, 
"Everything that we need for our survival and well-being depends, either directly or indirectly, on our natural environment. Sustainability creates and maintains the conditions under which humans and nature can exist in productive harmony, that permit fulfilling the social, economic and other requirements of present and future generations. Sustainability is important to making sure that we have and will continue to have, the water, materials, and resources to protect human health and our environment"


Q: Why has sustainability come about?
A: According to the EPA, sustainability has come about because,
"Sustainability has emerged as a result of significant concerns about the unintended social, environmental, and economic consequences of rapid population growth, economic growth and consumption of our natural resources. In its early years, EPA acted primarily as the nation's environmental watchdog, striving to ensure that industries met legal requirements to control pollution. In subsequent years, EPA began to develop theory, tools, and practices that enabled it to move from controlling pollution to preventing it.Today EPA aims to make sustainability the next level of environmental protection by drawing on advances in science and technology to protect human health and the environment, and promoting innovative green business practices."


Q:Is sustainablitiy a fad or a trend?
A: According to ICLEI,
"Sustainability has evolved over several decades to become a mainstream concept. For example, countless corporations, such as Walmart and DuPont, now recognize the benefits of sustainable practices that minimize environmental impacts, use resources more efficiently, and save them money to increase profits. Individuals, small businesses, universities, local governments, national governments, and the United Nations have all adopted or promoted sustainability in different ways."


Q: How can I become sustainable?
A: Simple everyday practices can be a great starting place. Something as easy as turning off computer towers and monitors at the end of the day, shutting off lights when you leave the room, and installing sensor faucets in restrooms. These practices are either free or at a very low cost, but doing simple things like these can make your business more sustainable and more profitable at the same time. If you would like more information on how to become sustainable, please visit our calendar and attend one of our First Step Workshops. After the workshop feel free to register for a free consultation with the Duquesne University Center for Green Industries. Click here for our contact information.