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The environment is considered the most important of the three pillars of sustainability, perhaps because the social and economic pillars are largely dependent on the existence of a functional environment. The inability to keep environmental issues in check weakens the other pillars of sustainability, therefore, it is safe to say that working towards a stronger and sustainable environment is key to ensuring a better quality of life, globally.
“Environmental sustainability is concerned with whether environmental resources will be protected and maintained for future generations”, implying that while humans engage in various activities to meet their needs and make life enjoyable, they consider environmental protection and desist from acts that cause damage to the environment or deplete resources that cannot be renewed.
In promoting environmental sustainability, civil society actors should ensure that in the course of balancing local and global efforts to meet basic human needs, the natural environment should not be destroyed or degraded as keeping the environment safe in order to sustain future generations is a commitment that everyone needs to be part of. Civic actors must, in actions and speech, encourage sustainable living- actively involving in the maintenance of factors and practices that contribute to the quality of the environment on a long-term basis.
When all the three pillars of sustainability are strengthened, people live in a system where high-quality life is the norm. They have a clean healthy environment, a satisfactory level of economic well-being and a robust level of social fulfillment.
CSOs are effective as development actors when they develop and support policies that promote environmental sustainability and encourage more sustainable environmental practices. Such as- moving toward renewable energy (like solar)instead of relying on non-renewable energy sources (like coal and power plants)which create pollution and alter the earth’s atmosphere.
A common approach needs to be agreed and; the people and the government should be aware of the damages their actions can inflict on the environment and the precautionary measures that need to be taken. This will go a long way in protecting both the social and economic aspects of society.