No singular, universal path to sustainable living — IGES

The Institute for Global Environmental Strategies has released the “Sustainable Ways of Living Issue Brief Series” as part of the Sustainable Lifestyles and Education (SLE) Programme of the One-Planet Network. 

The SLE Programme has recently supported 24 projects aimed at creating sustainable lifestyles in cities and communities based on their unique needs and opportunities. These projects highlighted that there is no single universal path towards sustainable living because each region, country, and community has specific needs, barriers, and opportunities that must be addressed. However, there are key sustainable living elements that were common among the 24 project locales. These include: 

  • The interconnection of sustainable everyday living and sustainable livelihoods; 
  • The need to reinforce alternative ways of meeting to greatly reduce negative environmental and social impacts; and 
  • The need to shift from a focus on individual choice to building inclusive community capacities that are fair. 

The projects also surfaced various interrelated issues that must be addressed in order to enable sustainable living during and beyond the COVID-19 pandemic. These are: 

  • Leveraging untapped resources, including natural assets, community and group knowledge, and social networks; 
  • Value creation through bridging diverse types of knowledge and skills; and  
  • Collaborative learning and creation. 

The published Issue Brief Series aims to succinctly introduce these three issues based on the experiences and learning from the 24 projects.  The project led by ICLEI Southeast Asia focused on engaging local communities to promote sustainable energy consumption and carbon emissions reduction. The objective was accomplished by improving their access to pertinent information and helping them visualize the benefits of EE&C. A comprehensive understanding of EE&C is one of the keys to transitioning to a sustainable pathway.

The Issue Brief can be accessed HERE. 

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