Be Aware. Be Sustainable!

Recently a LinkedIn discussion by members of the Sustainability Working Group caught my attention.  The title, “What is your vision of Sustainability?” As you can imagine, this discussion has quite a few comments of a convincing nature.  Allow me to recap to illustrate the complexity of this now commonly used word – sustainability.  A few “visions” include:

“My vision of sustainability is that all organizations (e.g. families, churches, businesses, NGOs, town departments, government facilities, civic groups, professional organizations, etc.) operate in accordance with the organizational definition of sustainability - "develop and maintain the capability to transparently manage its responsibilities for environmental stewardship, social well-being, and economic prosperity - over the long term - while being accountable to its stakeholders.”  Bob Pojasek
“In my opinion sustainability can have only one vision that is to have a sustainable world (as a whole).” Vinit Jain
“My vision of sustainability is leadership over authority in organizations.” Eric Fox
“…defining sustainability requires all of us to define ourselves and our relationship to all life.”  David F. Aust
“Very simple! Mankind has to extend their own vision from "myself" to "my planet" and everything will fall in place.” Veejay Patell

Intertwined in comments about vision, are mention of tools and frameworks that organizations in all sectors can use to gauge their operational practices consistently (e.g., Global Reporting Initiative, British Standards, etc.), and report what they are doing to the public to stay accountable. 

The last comment in the LinkedIn discussion I read ended with, “Be Aware, Be Sustainable!”  This struck a chord with me.  Oftentimes, there are tools available, innovative practices, and examples to learn from within the same industry, on the next stage over, or even right across the hall.  Awareness is a key component in the journey to be sustainable.

Where am I going with all of this, you might ask?  Let's take a look at a sustainable film initiative happening in the United Kingdom.

Over the past few years, the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) has been developing their vision for sustainability. They have worked with the British Standards Institute to create a standard called BS 8909 to incorporate sustainability into a film production processes.  While this in line with what other industries do, this standard has been rather slow to catch on in the film industry outside of the United Kingdom. BAFTA continues to set an example by talking more about the “green” practices they are implementing through a consortium recently formed called, Media Greenhouse.

What is next in their vision of sustainability?  We’re not sure, but we will stay tuned, stay aware.

Turning the focus locally, are you aware of sustainable efforts happening on the next stage over or across the hall?  If so, let’s talk more about these so we as an industry can “Be Aware. Be Sustainable!”