By Ryan Elizabeth Cope –
Saving the world starts with saving our communities.
We think saving the world and being sustainable means certain things—big, lofty things. But what if sustainability and “being Green” starts with personal sustainability (How do I keep my cup full to then pour myself into other work?), morphs into community sustainability (How can I contribute to the longevity of the place I belong?), and eventually, planetary sustainability (How do we as a collective raise the green bar?)?
Somewhere along the way, we started looking a little too far forward. We started advocating for big, planetary changes all at once, working ourselves into exhaustion trying to save the whales and the Amazon—all in the same day.
In the quest for planetary sustainability, we got a little burned out and forgot what it meant to be personally and communally sustainable.
The Green Gazette has always taught me about the importance of personal and community sustainability: What are the good, Green things happening right in this area worth learning more about? The magazine has always served as a tool for taking “the Green life” to a personal level, all while teaching us about important, bigger issues, like recycling, regenerative agriculture, and carbon emissions.
The journey of being Green and striving for a more sustainable life is hard, no doubt about it. We are up against the fight of our collective lives and it’s daunting. With all of the conflicting crises across the globe, it can be hard to find even a shred of hope. One way to survive and thrive in this place is to find what sustainability means, first to ourselves, then to the communities that surround us.
To me, that is what it means to save the world. And this journey, while hard, is so worth it.
To the founders, editors, and contributors of The Green Gazette (past and present!) thank you for helping me along on my sustainability journey and teaching me this lesson. I’m so grateful, and I look forward to continuing walking the good, Green journey with you, wherever you may land!