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Cradle to Cradle sample essay

In this book the authors and environmentalists William McDonough and Michael Braungart discuss how very un-eco friendly are the people that design our world, from our buildings to the products we use and consume. They talk about how our solutions for our environmental problems, such as recycling, are basically just a band-aid fix for broken bone. They discuss the negative effects that our daily lives have on our environment and offer some solutions of their own to help counteract the problem as much as possible, even the book Cradle to Cradle is printed on eco-friendly paper that does not use trees. In this book McDonough and Braungart urge its readers to take our environment into account and look for better solutions to our global environmental problems then the ones that we have been settling for for the last half-century. In this book McDonough and Braungart identify two major problems with the way that we live that negatively affects our environment. The first is the problem of throwing things away, because in fact when we throw things away, they do not just go away.

The things that we throw out stay here on our Earth, soiling our precious and finite earth and affect its well-being. The second problem that they discuss the the harmful product that are used, which not only have negative impacts on our planet, but also on ourselves. In this book the authors urge us to learn from nature through bio-mimicry, an effort to design buildings like trees, cities like forests. They also challenge us to look at ants and the role they play in the world and their self-sustaining way of life and to learn from them. Ants are able to inhabit a diverse a range of environments, are able to hunt, scavenge, and grow their own food, build their homes, effectively handle their wastes, create powerful medicines, and produce biological and chemical weapons, all the while contributing to the health of the natural world.

We live on this earth less-effectively than ants and should look to their way of living as a role model for how we as humans live on this earth. McDonough and Braungart offer some of their own suggestions for way that we can live effectively with the Earth in mind, such as rooftops covered with soil and plants that serve as natural insulation, non toxic dyes and fabrics, their current overhaul of Ford’s legendary River Rouge factory, and even the book itself, which is printed on a synthetic paper that does not use trees.

While creating an ultimate solution to our environmental problem is a very involved and complicated ordeal, McDonough and Braungart do offer some simple solutions to help cut down on the harm we are causing our planet. One things that we can do is to cut out all chemicals and substances that are harmful and destructive both to humans as well as the environment. Also they discuss how we must abandon our current cradle to grave way of thinking and adopt a cradle to cradle way of thinking, meaning that we need to consider where the products and its packaging will end up after we are finished with it. When creating a product we need to begin to understand and think about where it will end up after the consumer is done with it. We must think about how our waste can be reused in order to cut back on unnecessary waste and contamination of our planet.

McDonough and Braungart in this book urge us to start looking at our wasteful ways and see how it is harming our own selves as well as the environment and see that we must adopt a cradle to cradle way of thinking in order to save our planet and use the finite resources we have in a smart and truly eco friendly way. After reading this book I examined the wasteful way in which I live my own life, and when I think about how I live and times that by 6,973,738,433, it’s hard to fathom how much damage we must be doing to our planet.

Our resource, clean air and precious earth are limited but humans are consumers and don’t consider much past our own immediate wants and needs. After reading this book I see how important it is to move away from cradle to grave thinking and truly take on a cradle to cradle way of thinking and see the long term effects of our consumerism. This book should be read by everyone because it gives a clear and simple way to see how we are living now, and then how we should be living in order to help save and protect the planet that we have been given.

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