Sustainability and Sustainable Development


Sustainability is derived nouns from the verb sustain which may simply mean to endure. Sustainability is therefore defined as the enduring capacity in a particular field; however, the word has several various meanings which come up subject to the field in question. There are a couple of other definitions to the word ‘sustainability’ these may include the below. In an accident scene, the casualties are said to have sustained injuries whether major or minor injuries, therefore from this perspective, sustainability can be defined as to go through a situation or better still to experience a situation. The same word can mean to nourish or provide with nourishment, for instance, when one says, “During the forty days of fasting, we sustained ourselves with water”. Here sustainability reflects the act of providing with nourishment, the word can again mean to provide with necessities and support.

This can be seen in a family setting for instance, the father of the family sustains the family. Sustainability in this case implies that the father provides for the whole family and he endures through all these responsibilities. The other definition of the word sustainability which snaps my mind is the meaning the word acquires in a legal setting, the verb sustain in a legal setting is used to mean admit as valid. If a judge or the national assembly speaker sustains an objection, this means that he has admitted the objection as valid. There hence sustainability generally means the capacity to hold on or endure longer. With all these different meanings of sustainability, there is one that has stood aloof which up to now remains the best definition to the word in question, this is that sustainable development is the capacity to adequately meeting the present needs without necessarily compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.

According to my personal understanding, I figure out that the above definition (last), is best suited and is the most popular in the corporate world and in business ethics. One of the main reasons why I tend to choose this definition and hail it over the others in a corporate perspective is because, the above definition carefully takes into account the economical, social and environmental demands and goes way ahead to fully reconcile them. These are the three pillars of sustainability; therefore, a reconciliation of the trio will see sustainability with the inverse of the above been true this is so because sustainable business practices integrate the triple bottom line which is integration of the ecological and social concerns with economic concerns.

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