What is Environment Sustainability and Why is it Important?


Did you know that Singapore is one of the most environmentally sustainable nations? This is a factor that has attracted numerous investors from all over the world. Singapore’s efforts and strict green technology guidelines, which were set by the government, have helped immensely in building the eco-friendly city we have today.

What is environmental sustainability?

Environmental sustainability is internationally defined as “Development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own.”

As an environmentally sustainable country, we should be able to meet our own needs for food, water, shelter, as well as activities that make our life enjoyable, while ensuring we don’t cause damage to our environment or deplete resources we can’t renew. Environmental sustainability is a key strategy to help solve the underlying concern of the future generation facing scarce natural resources and polluted environments.

Why is environmental sustainability important?

We live a modern and largely urban existence throughout the developed world, and consume a lot of natural resources every day. In urban areas, we use a lot of power for our house appliances, buildings and streets. With increasing population numbers, environmental sustainability has become an important topic as people realise the full impact that business and individuals can have on the environment.

If we do not sustain the environment, natural resources will not only be over-exploited but also become contaminated with toxic chemicals, which will affect the survival of our future generations. That is why it is crucial for us to protect the environment, such as by recycling and reducing our power consumption.


How do we ensure environmental sustainability?

Environmental sustainability is concerned with whether environmental resources are protected and maintained for future generations. Here are some tips that every individual or company can keep in mind to make environmentally sustainable decisions:

  • Intergenerational decision making

When we make economic decisions, we have to focus on its implications on future generations, not just the present moment. For example, burning coal presents us with short-term benefits, as it a cheaper source of energy. However, it is not a sustainable option as it produces significant amounts of pollution that would detrimentally affect the future generations.

  • Renewable resources

We are shifting to renewable resources, for example, solar, wind, and hydropower. For example, Singapore is advancing research on the world’s largest floating solar photovoltaic test-bed in the north of the islands. Renewable energy sources are preferred as they have a lower environmental impact, are widely available, and are naturally replenished.

  • Protection of biodiversity

Some medicines or research developments require elements from specific plants or animals. If these go extinct, it limits future innovations. Nearly 17,000 species of plants and animals are currently at risk of extinction due to human activities like hunting and loss of habitat. An environmentally sustainable mindset involves reducing such activities to protect and conserve such species.

  • Treat environmental resources as if they have intrinsic rights and value

We should not only rely on monetary value – like whether we gain financially from protecting the rainforest – but instead, protect the environment because it deserves to be protected. This way, we can let our future generations enjoy the wonders that nature has to provide as well.



Now that you have a better understanding of environmental sustainability, don’t you agree it is such an important topic to talk about? If you are interested and want to learn how to be part of a workforce that helps our environment, speak with our Skills Ambassadors at Lifelong Learning Institute, who will be able to recommend suitable courses and educational resources to help you grow your skills. Click here to register for a free one-to-one consultation now!

Credit Sources: Economics Help, Permaculture Research Institute, Visit Singapore, MDG Monitor

Posted on 02/02/21