Progress in Sustainability

Essay by khusoiCollege, UndergraduateC, October 2014

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Progress in Sustainability

As our society advances, there are negative impacts on the environment. Our population recognizes the wealth of the environment but we continue to exploit it for our benefit. Together, Foster and Clark's "The Paradox of Wealth: Capitalism and Ecological Destruction" and Wager et al's "Environmental impacts of the Swiss collection and recovery systems for Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE): A follow-up" could help us progress on environmental sustainability.

The essay's by Wager et al and by Foster and Clark speak of our environmental impacts. Wager goes into specific detail of a Swiss collection and recovery system for Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE). The article identifies the environmental benefits that resulted from the WEEE collection program and opens the reader's eyes to the harmful effects that arise when dangerous materials are not disposed of properly. Foster and Clark, also referring to environmental impacts, speak of the conflict between wealth and value.

They identify the issue of try to "save the planet from the ecological destruction wrought by capitalist expansion" and the difficulty behind this task (1). Throughout the two articles, readers can gain a better understanding of how to achieve environmental sustainability and how to progress on what we already have. Wager et al declares that proper recovery systems for dangerous materials should be essential to our society. Recycle and recovery systems, such as WEEE, have much less impact on our environment compared to other baseline landfilling. In fact, research and tests completed on the WEEE recovery system came to the conclusion that "the highest environmental impacts are caused by the 'landfilling' scenario," which is still a common issue in many places (Wager et all, 1753). With progress in new recovery systems, negative environmental impacts can decrease. However, Foster and Clark...