Looking at the tag cloud on the right column of my blog, the word sustainability distinguishes with its size from the others. Obviously, I have tagged a lot of my posts with this word, which I have started to hate…What does “sustainability” mean? A buzz word that everybody uses, but nobody really understands it. “Sustainability” has started creating a “reactance phenomenon” with people getting tired of listening to this word, switching to a denial, more passive mode. But why? I will totally agree with Valerie Casey of the Designers Accord describing that the “language of sustainability” is all wrong, too firmly based in decades of shaming environmentalism and a subtractive rather than additive design process and lifestyle.
Do we really want a calvinistic future, full of moral regulations, laws, “efficiencies” etc or do we want a free life, where we can create and flourish without any guilts? I like Ehrenfeld’s view of aephoria (the greek word for “always flourishing”), but in the end does he just create another buzzword? I think I will agree with John Bielenberg of projectM declaring that “sustainability needs rebranding” in order to become a more attractive idea that is unignorable and opportunity-based, rather than limiting.