Sustainability Problems vs Paradoxes
Most of us are trained to be problem solvers. Give us a problem and we’re on it. We’ve got tools, we’ve had experience. No worries, we’ve got this one. But what if the situation that confronts us includes options that seem to be in opposition, each is problematic within itself, and because of their importance taking any one side creates a whole slew of other problems? What then? Do the analysis and comparative information then use what you’ve found to choose the least bad between them? It’s easy to see a cascading effect of undesired consequences that ensue either way. You find yourself on the horns of a dilemma. More often than not people treat oppositional forces as either/or dilemmas, justifying decisions as doing the best they could when faced with nothing but bad choices. What if you approached the situation a different way, one where better options could emerge? What if instead of problems, we were to treat the situation at hand as a paradox where the seeming oppositional “problems” could be managed? In addressing issues of sustainability there are many paradoxes we must manage to obtain optimal solutions that dynamically balance the forces by which people can make a living while being in harmony with ones that maintain our life-supporting planet.