The Paris Agreement
This photo was taken 1 million miles from the earth this past July on the Deep Space Climate Observatory satellite with NASA’s Earth Polychromatic imaging camera. It sure looks like an inviting place to live. One might imagine what it would take to increase the earth’s average surface temperature by 2 degrees centigrade, and what the implications of that happening might be. I personally find it simply remarkable that the representatives of 196 countries, representing people of all colors, sizes, languages, religions, currencies and cultures found it important enough of an issue that they agreed to work together, each within their own capability, to put a limit on the annual generation of Green House Gases to prevent the rise in temperature of exceeding 2 degrees.
Why would organizations like nations and businesses seriously consider sustainability? The reason is because they now see the connections between their own sustainability and the sustainability outside of their own sphere of purely selfish interests. They know that the earth is the basis of the global economy. They understand the connection between the “master variables” of Population (P), Resources (R) and Technology (T) and the economy ($). And what connects these? The Earth (E) and People (p) like you and me living on it, and expressing our preferences and demanding sustainable business practices and products. Not only has the long term cause and effect relationship been exposed, but the global system of systems has become anticipatory. Climate is the most obvious example.