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Sustainability is a term that describes the totality of social, ecological and economical conditions whereby the resources that are consumed for the purpose of human survival are ensured to be replenished upon their use, either via recycling, reusing or reallocating the raw materials themselves or the elements that are required for their manufacture and/or retrieval. It is important to note that it is not enough to simply replenish these said elements one measly time to qualify for the sustainability claim. Although the number of times that an element needs to be replenished to qualify it as sustainable is not strictly defined, enforced or ensured by any sustainability governing body, it is generally accepted that said element must be replenished multiple times - certainly more than once, and generally many more times than that.
The key aspect of sustainability is the concept of resource replenishment. To understand this concept, imagine you are requiring the use of two blue-eyed hampsters for your thing that you are doing. If the thing you are doing causes the hamsters to die unceremoniously in a pool of horrific blue-eyed hamster blood, this activity can be described as non-sustainable, as you have failed to ensure the hamsters' plenishment, let alone their repeatable replenishment. If, however, if in the process of executing your thingymajigger, you manage to preserve the lives and reusability of your blue-eyed hamsters, you have achieved a certain level of sustainability. But this still cannot be identified as a fully sustainable system. If you are able to reuse the hamsters repeatedly so that they are able to have hot hamster sex and reproduce in the form of replenished blue-eyed hamster babies that you can use for further thing-doing, then your system can be said to be entirely sustainable, and you will get pretty ribbons from Al Gore.
edit Areas of sustainability
There are many scales, or frames of reference, regarding resource sustainability. Concerns can range from the smallest scale of human activity, such as your use of soap in the shower, to much larger scales involving global human concerns, such as genocide or the Olympic games. Following are some of the more important concerns regarding resource sustainability.
edit Ecological sustainability
Ecological sustainability is the implementation of sustainability in the concern for the health of the big blue ball depicted in the picture above, upon the which we all live. There are ecologists who believe that many of our thingy-things that we like to do on this ball are not plenishing the ball's things at all - let alone replenishing them - while we do them. Some of those things are car-driving, coal-mining, life-drawing and shuffleboard. Taking the last item as an example, the manufacture and distribution of shuffleboard equipment involves the unsustainable use of the raw materials they make shuffleboard equipment out of causing the earth to die. Shuffleboard enthusiasts who are married or otherwise emotionally connected to concerned ecologists have called for international shuffleboard governing bodies to divert large amounts of their organizations' capital away from the international competitions in Palm Springs and into ongoing research into the manufacture and distribution of shuffleboard equipment using more sustainable materials and processes. As most shuffleboard enthusiasts die fewer then twelve months after their introduction to the largely senior-dominated pursuit, one idea that has gained traction in the shuffleboard community is to manufacture shuffleboard equipment out of the ashes of dead enthusiasts. While this concept bears a resemblance to the principle of sustainability, and in fact would contribute to a more ecologically friendly shuffleboard equipment manufacturing system, it should be noted that it technically cannot be described as a sustainability effort, as the reusability of the materials cannot strictly be ensured. Although it is fairly certain that shuffleboard will always appeal to the soon-to-be-dead elderly, it cannot be scientifically relied upon, and therefore does not qualify.
It is more reasonable, then, to focus ecological sustainability efforts on the other mentioned areas; car-driving, coal-mining, and life-drawing. So good luck with that.
edit Energy sustainability
When you eat a banana, you get energy, but the banana, for the vast majority of the human population, becomes unavailbale for reconsumption. The principle of sustainability in the concern for how we get our energy drives the effort to find new technologies that can make that same banana available again for future reconsumption, whether by its original consumer or by the community at large.
This same principle applies to our need for electrical power. However, generating electricity sustainably is far easier than keeping people energized sustainably. Systems that generate electricity, to be sustainable, should simply be powered by perpetual motion machines.
edit Economical sustainability
Economical sustainabilty refers to the implementation of sustainability - via legislation or disingenuous TV commercials by oil conglomerates - in the concern for the continued thriving of corporations with oodles of cash. For example, if the Dynamic Ooodles of Cash Corporation decides it needs to acquire more oodles, it would be vital that they invest the oodles they already have into the political campaigns of candidates who promise to support legislation that ensures their personal economic sustainability. The problem is that corporations are not people, and as such they are unable to legally, constitutionally or ethically donate the amounts of capital that would ensure their desired corporate sustainability. This problem can be resolved by deciding that nothing in the Constitution explicitly states that corporations should not enjoy the same freedoms as individuals, so therefore those corporations should be free to ensure their sustainability through the same campaign donation avenues that are available to you and me. This notion is so reasonable, it is incredible that the Supreme Court has not decided in favor of it already. If, in fact, they have done so by the time you read this, then hooray for sustainability.
edit Social sustainability
Social sustainability refers to the implementation of policies by socialists that will violate the principle of economical sustainabilty, so therefore is untenable. Forget about this one.
edit Sustainability in entertainment
Despite advances in botox treatment and cosmetic surgery, most celebrities are tumbling inexorably toward decay and lack of reusability. This situation is, unfortunately, impossible to resolve with the current sustainability technologies available today. However, the principle of sustainability in the area of entertainment can be of some help. Films that have arguably failed to withstand the ravages of inevitable decay have recently discovered new life through the principle of reuse inherent in the sustainability movement. Screenplays that would otherwise have overrun our landfills and contributed to our severe pollution and environmental decay problems have been successfully reclaimed and repurposed over and over again in the form of remakes and sequels, resulting in a more sustainable film industry than we have ever enjoyed in the history of the entertainment business.
edit Population and sustainability
The principle of sustainability with regard to human population posits that there are just too many god damn people for crying out loud, and some of you assholes really need to think about using condoms now and then. Lord knows our over-stimulated blue planet doesn't need you or your idiotic grammar-challenged Yahoo! News comment section drivel, and your lack of existing would save a sausage link or two for the rest of us, who can tell a socialist from a moderate and essentially corporate-friendly liberal for fuck's sake. Studies show that over-population, while not a problem for the planet in and of itself as it is clear nature will find a way to off us and all of our drama eventually, will certainly cause the human race to suffer in the mean time. The principle of sustainability with respect to over-population, then, calls for loosening of our many idiot-laws. For example, stupid people must to be allowed to, ohhh I don't know, ride their motorcycles without a helmet, say. For the sake of sustainability to thrive, State legislators will need to get with that program.
- ↑ I will endeavor to peat this terrible joke only once, and then never repeat it.
- ↑ What are shuffleboard pucks made out of anyway? I guess I'll find out in forty years.
- ↑ I suppose it's possible there are shuffleboard enthusiasts who are concerned ecologists, but why split hairs? Does blue hair even split? I digress.
- ↑ Coprophagia, however, is decidedly not a means of sustainability.
- ↑ and less shit-eaty