7 Women Share What Sustainability Means to Them

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There are so many ways people can live more sustainable lives. No action is too small, and there’s still time to create a better world for generations to come. From eating more seaweed to joining local community groups, or even running for political office to push for social change, the potential for impact is limitless.

CircleAround reached out to seven women at the forefront of sustainable innovation to learn more about their work, their stories, and how we can become better stewards of global impact and environmental protection. 

Here are seven quotes they shared with CircleAround on what sustainability means to them, and how we all can live a more sustainable life. 

1. “The first thing to remember is that we are the environment… Just breathing is a profound connection to the health of our air and our atmosphere… there are sort of bits of nature all around us, right? A tree, a patch of grass, or, you know, a tomato plant you're growing on your balcony. These are all moments where we can be aware and thoughtful about connection.”

— Dr. Katharine Wilkinson, Project Drawdown

2. “Now more than ever, it is critical that we protect and increase our heritage seeds for the future and for our communities. Much of the diversity of seeds is being lost as fewer people are planting the original seeds, as modern agriculture has turned to genetically modified and patented seeds to produce our crops.”

— Grandmother Flordemayo, founder of The Path

3. “I have had countless incredible experiences living and working in beautiful and dynamic wilderness locations around the world, encountering wildlife, and collaborating with inspiring individuals dedicated to protecting nature. These experiences have led me to recognize the beauty of our planet and the importance for us to respect her through our reciprocity for all the nurturing gifts of natural resources that she provides for us for our survival.”

— Patricia Sims, co-founder of World Elephant Day

4. “Ask yourself hard questions, because living sustainably isn’t easy. If you’re a fisherman, how are you fishing? Are you working to create a more sustainable harvesting method? If you are an investor in a fishing company, what kind of fishing company are you investing in? If it’s a fishing company destroying the environment to make a quick profit, can you find another company to invest in that’s less harmful? And lastly, if you consume fish, are you learning enough about the way fish is caught to make informed decisions about your food?”

— Kim Polman, co-founder of Reboot the Future

5. “If you’re really committed to climate, really do look for organizations led by people of color, especially women of color, because if you’re trying to fix climate without fixing race, it’s not real… those areas are the most impacted, and those citizens are thinking of solutions that will better the lives of people in a way that can be more just than thoughtful.”

— Rhiana Gunn-Wright, director of climate policy at the Roosevelt Institute

6. “Living together in close quarters makes us more educated voters, better parents, empathetic neighbors, smarter creators, and literally allows us to point a story to a specific example or person. I hope that city planners, urbanists, NIMBYs, and neighbors understand that making existing buildings and repurposing them to build communal housing that literally breaks down walls for people.”

— Elvina Beck, founder of PodShare

7. “Something everyone can do today when it comes to the ocean and climate is eat more seaweed. It's just like being vegetarian on land. The ability of plants to do photosynthesis and absorb all these carbon dioxides actually helps to ameliorate ocean acidification in that local area….you can support the artisanal seaweed industry that is starting to flourish in the U.S. Super nutritious and a really good environmental move.”

— Dr. Ayana Elizabeth Johnson, founder of Urban Ocean Lab, and co-creator of the Blue New Deal

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Written By

Katka Lapelosová

Katka is a writer from New York City, currently living in Belgrade, Serbia. See Full Bio

CircleAround will make financial distributions to benefit current Girl Scouts: the next generation of trailblazers who will CircleAround after us. So CircleAround for inspiration, and CircleAround the leaders of tomorrow. CircleAround is owned by One GS Media, a subsidiary of Girl Scouts of the USA.

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