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Topic section: Beating the system
Beating the system
Sustainable development is about delivering the Earth to future generations in the same or better condition than we found it. While global issues such as climate change and international development are enormously important, at a local level it is about reducing our energy use, being careful about the food we buy and recycling our rubbish. Minimising the negative and maximise the positive impacts of our activities is common sense. Yet while we can do a little, individuals can't make the big and lasting changes needed for sustainable development because of the complex and interconnected economic, political and technological systems that govern the way we live.
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Topic section: A shock to the system
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Modern electricity supply is a complex and large system. Power failures are usually a result of problems with the electric grid than rather than power generation. We can buy energy-efficient lights, but the changes we can make are small because of the system. Unless we move to small-scale technologies, it will be impossible for us as individuals to make decisions about energy generation and use.  > more

Topic section: You are what you buy to eat
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British food production reels from crisis to crisis. The whole food system, from the seed to your plate, has become controversial. Food production is a complex system involving large corporations, supermarkets, government agencies and the European Union. How can we get the food we want, at a reasonable price and in a way we find acceptable?  > more

Topic section: Waste not want not
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Waste is increasing all the time, but as a country we are not good at recycling it. Aluminium cans are converted into window frames hundreds of miles away and then sold back in this country. The system for efficient recycling is currently lacking but, until the government creates one, the waste will continue to pile up.  > more
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