“Give a man a fish, you feed him a day. If you teach him how to fish you feed him for a lifetime”
The above sentence has been widely used in the field of Sustainable Development because it does reflect the sustainability clearly. When start helping people by only providing them with the result instead of teaching them how to adopt their opinions and ways of life so as to acquire the outcome, they always ask for further help and so on because they didn’t know how to do it.
On the other hand, when we start educating people how to change lifestyles and finding appropriate approaches to cope with issues in their communities so that they can adapt themselves in global environmental change. Eventually, they has ability to strengthen their communities under changes of climate and environmental conditions because those are capable adapting their perspectives and behaviours. This can help deal with problems and accomplish a successful outcome in a sustainability manner.
Department of Environmental Quality Promotion, Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, Bangkok Thailand, as my workplace, has become the National Focal Point on the Article 6 to carry on the Action for Climate Empowerment (ACE) with the focus on raising public awareness, public participation, traing, educating people on climate change and adaptation. So, I have helped to operate and promote climate change perception and knowledge about adaptation to changing climatic condition to drive forwards to sustainability.
In Dubuque, Iowa, It can give me a clear visualisation on sustainability and adaptation to climate change. This because city’s officials do not only to work on environmental aspects, but they also focus on organic and urban farming, water quality and management, human rights, green school promotion, sustainable innovation development and so on. As follow:
In terms of water quality testing, Mr. Dean Mattoon presented how to test water quality via catfish creeks. So, the staff does keeping collecting water examples to the lab. Moreover, they have to go to creek in order explore aquatic life in and living things around the creeks. This can reflect that they are carefully in every process along the way they have worked.
In the case of organic farm, I had a field to Sinsinawa Mound Collaborative farm, I picked up approaches how to grow organic plants, how to prepare the land, how to look after plants. They are very carefully in doing their tasks to prevent any kinds of agrochemicals.
Regarding convivium urban farm, I took an opportunity to learn how to start doing, to gain methods, to adopt some materials instead of buying new equipment or new construction. All working concepts can be adopted to use in my work and future life.
In the aspect of human rights, the city’s officials also build partnership community and generating data system for their community. More importantly, the city helps people to access educational institutions and to find a job. This can give a clear answer that they do not leave any one behind and they will make more efforts to assist poor and refugee people to move forwards together.
As for green vision schools, I could observed that schools have good practices for their students as they has motivated their learners to join environmental saving activities such as reducing waste,ennergy saving and planting vegetable activities without using chemicals in their school in conjunction with giving their student environmental conservation knowledge. they has started building their pupils’ capacity on taking of environmental conditions and raising their awareness to link any fields to enviromental sustainability.
From this point, it can be stated that the environment is all around our lives, thus, driving the community to sustainability is to focus on major dimensions namely economy, society and environment. By doing this, we can go far and near sustainable yet prosperous as can be seen in Dubuque that has become a good role model in terms of sustainability due to the development to cover all fundamental infrastructure like climate, water, land, farming, education, community an so on.
Environmental Official, Department of Environmental Quality Promotion, Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, Thailand