Are you engaged?

Written by Joanna Ouellette

“The tectonic changes that we face in the coming decades, including population increases, environmental degradation and socioeconomic expectations, require bold thinking and new approaches. Add to this a decreased capacity by governments in the developed world, shifting geopolitical realities, and a growing sense that if the solutions cannot be found at the top they will have to be driven from the bottom and the middle, and you have fertile ground for new approaches as well as the development of new tools.” 

International Institute for Sustainable Development, 2010-2011 Annual Report; “Transformative Change”.

TerraBluTeams is on a mission to drive sustainability through human engagement on a global scale.

OK, engagement certainly appears to be the buzzword of the century, but one thing is sure, it is not a novel concept. There are 264 million google results for human engagement, and almost as many definitions and perspectives as highlighted by this only slightly cheeky graphic. Of course, among the content-filled rooms of the internet, there are many, many more thoughtful, intelligent, intuitive and far-reaching perspectives, analyses and projections of the concept of human engagement.

It is the TerraBluTeams goal to engage, to actually engage people to become practitioners of sustainability. But since we can only engage those in our immediate sphere of influence; our family, friends, co-workers, those we do business with, etc., we’re not going to get very far, very fast, alone.

The only way we’re ALL going to reach the critical mass of sustainers that the Blue Planet, and future generations of humanity, tigers and rosewoods need, is by building and strengthening our own sphere, creating a spark in you, giving you the tools, and reasons, to learn to live a more sustainable lifestyle and engage others in your own spheres, and so on.

We’d like to think of you as a TerraBluTeam volunteer; to donate your time, energy and resources towards global sustainability, create your own TerraBluTeam and continuing the engagement in your own world, with a little help from us. Your volunteer time is spent in completing 52 sustainability exercises, documenting them, and sharing your experiences, challenges and successes with others. And there is no more noble cause than a sustainable planet. Plus, you do it in your own time, and don’t have to drive 20 miles to get there.

Take a moment to think about all the people you interact with, and those who are in your sphere of influence.Take a look at this graphic and identify the people in your own life who have the greatest potential for engagement towards sustainable living, and those who will naturally engage others. And ask them to join your TerraBluTeam.

When you look at it in these terms, reaching the dizzy heights of sustainability doesn’t seem like such an audacious goal. Are you engaged?

2 thoughts on “Are you engaged?

  1. Great post. I think, to many, the idea of being sustainable stirs images of living off the land, wearing hemp clothing and only eating sustainably harvested alfalfa. While those are all good things, its not necessarily about that. Small steps make a huge difference. Something like 40% of the world’s energy goes into heating, cooling and lighting our homes and offices. McKinsey said that if we pursued energy efficiency alone we could cut GHG emissions by a third. Starting small, like with efficient lighting, turning down the heat at night, and insulating are really concrete, positive steps that get you on the path to sustainability. I love the idea of TerraBlu teams because each week you get realistic ideas on how to become more sustainable. And don’t forget that sustainability has multiple consequences – like reducing costs and improving your quality of life. Remember, a journey of a thousand miles begins with a step, so let’s follow TBT’s lead here and take a step.
    –Rich Goode
    Head of Global Sustainability, Alcatel-Lucent

    • I agree Rich, in several states, public education and the change in energy consumption behavior alone has decreased usage by 15-26%, black and brown outs are rare except in disaster related events, and hopefully as technology, design and retrofitting our communities with renewable energy alternatives advance forward, the need for new power plants will be unnecessary!

      And that’s just the “energy” part of sustainability. More innovative earth friendly product design, stakeholder engagement, and social responsibility initiatives could all prosper from our engaging “steps”. According to the EPA and my experience, we Americans are behind and we hope TerraBluTeams can help move the dial forward towards that “Tipping Point”.

      No matter where we are on our path, each of us can continue to move the dial forward towards a more sustainable family, community and lifestyle one step at a time. Our “Sustainable Year of Exercises” vehicle works well for those small steps. Whether you are a seasoned sustainable practitioner, a beginner or somewhere in between, we hope you will enjoy our steps towards a more sustainable world!

      Let us know how you are doing and how we are doing!

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