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THE CATALYST: Sustainability Engineering 101

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By Felix C. Veroya

What is your favorite childhood superhero? I can still remember when I was about six (6) years old, I am amazed by Captain Planet. He is a superhero created by the power of five (5) mystical rings that represent Earth’s natural resources. That is the moment I become an advocate of what they are trying to teach their audience – sustainability.

Sustainability is the ability to be maintained at a certain rate or level or the avoidance of the depletion of natural resources to maintain an ecological balance. It has become a buzzword nowadays since the United Nation published the Sustainable Development Goals. These goals are 17 goals that support the key working areas to sustain Earth for the future generations. The goals are 1) No Poverty, 2) Zero Hunger, 3) Good Health and Well Being, 4) Quality Education, 5) Gender Equality, 6) Clean Water and Sanitation, 7) Affordable and Clean Energy, 8) Decent Work and Economic Growth, 9) Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure, 10) Reduced Inequalities, 11) Sustainable Cities and Communities, 12) Responsible Consumption and Production, 13) Climate Action, 14) Life Below Water, 15) Life on Land, 16) Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions and 17) Partnerships for the Goals. Personally, I advocate for Goals #4, 9 and 17.

As part of the drive to contribute to these SDGs, I am teaching the concept of Sustainability Engineering. Sustainability Engineering is a revolutionary approach to create a long-lasting improvement to human condition. This is done by embedding solutions to complex social, environmental, political, and economic systems. It seeks holistic understanding of complex problems that transcend the traditional boundaries of engineering but utilizes analytical tools such as life cycle assessment, risk analysis and systems engineering.

In the practical context, sustainability engineering covers:

  • processing and optimizing resources,
  • designing and building supply chain networks,
  • meeting consumer needs, and
  • recovering and reusing resources.

There are various ways on how you can involve to sustainability initiatives from participating in projects initiated by relevant groups and societies up to starting your own passion project aligned with the SDGs.

For my case, I am using Ask Lex PH Academy to offer free webinars and e-learning courses to support students, young professionals, entrepreneurs and start-up founders to support Goal #4: Quality Education. I have conducted hackathons for MSMEs to innovate their processes, products and services supporting Goal #9: Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure. We have made significant partnerships with other organizations advocating supporting Goal #17: Partnership for the Goals.

We only have one Earth to live on and we must take part on ways and programs to ensure that the next generations can still experience a #significantlybetter future.

Let’s continue to be #significantlybetter in managing our time, together!

Wanna talk? Get in touch with me thru fcveroya@asklexph.com

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