How Does Pollution Relate to Sustainability?

What if one was to argue that sustainability is similar to disease? From there, one can bring out how it relates to prevention.

So, how does pollution relate to sustainability? In summary, pollution jeopardizes sustainability.

If there is pollution, sustainability becomes hard to achieve. On the other hand, preventing pollution promotes sustainability.

Since prevention is better than cure, your guess is as good as mine about the best strategy for sustainability. What about a detailed discussion of the relationship between the two?

Environmental Sustainability

It is no secret that sustainability cuts across many sectors. Our focus is on environmental sustainability, though.

Regarding environmental sustainability, people need to meet their needs whenever necessary. However, they should remember that there are other generations to come who will also need to meet their needs at that time.

Striking a balance between what’s needed now and in the future is a perfect definition of environmental sustainability. The current generation will enjoy the right to use the available resources to meet their needs. However, they won’t do anything that could compromise that same right when future generations will need to enjoy it.

Experts have suggested various ways of achieving environmental sustainability. They revolve around the following areas;

  • Reusing resources, especially the rare ones on the verge of extinction
  • Preventing air, soil, and water pollution due to their importance in sustaining living things
  • Conserving resources but using them effectively and sparingly whenever possible
  • Reducing the rate at which people produce waste
  • Reducing the rate at which people use toxic substances
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Upon doing these things, the world moves closer to achieving this crucial goal of environmental sustainability. On the other hand, failure to sort it out could see the world inhabitable in years to come.

How Does Pollution Relate to Sustainability?

Having understood what environmental sustainability is, it is worth mentioning how pollution could jeopardize its achievement.

For instance, living things require water, nitrogen, oxygen, and carbon to survive. That’s where forests and wetlands come in handy to sustain these biological systems.

They initiate and manage cycles that promote the distribution of these crucial elements. Consequently, all living and non-living things live harmoniously and healthily.

However, that’s becoming hard to achieve due to pollution. As the population increases, people encroach on the forests and wetlands, thus interrupting the normal natural cycles and ecosystem.

To make the matter worse, the proportion isn’t proceeding as it should. After all, the increasing population needs enough resources to survive and the necessary natural cycles and ecosystems, but they seem to be diminishing.

Since the trend is wary and one can’t imagine the eventuality if it continues, there has been a need to take some necessary measures. Due to the effect of pollution on sustainability, they revolve around the former.

They fall under three categories as follows;

Pollution Control

It involves strategies that focus on managing pollutants. Therefore, they are majorly applicable when the emission of pollutants is inevitable.

To manage the pollutants, people come up with ways or reducing their effects once they reach the surroundings. That’s how these strategies facilitate sustainability.

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One of them is treating the water used in the manufacturing process. The transformation ensures that other living things can reuse the water after the manufacturers use it.

In that regard, the manufacturers had no other option but to release the waste. Fair enough, he does something to ensure that its effect is minimal.

Pollution Prevention

Whereas pollution control deals with pollutants, the prevention strategies ensure that they don’t reach the environment, to begin with.

For instance, people should avoid using toxic substances if they can do without them. Instead of burning fossil fuels, people can opt to use renewable energy.

People shouldn’t destroy natural resources, given their importance to their survival and that of other living things. Poaching, unnecessary mining, and deforestation should be a thing of the past.

For obvious reasons, these preventive measures can promote sustainability.

Pollution Reduction

In some cases, preventing pollution entirely is impossible. That’s where pollution reduction becomes the next great thing.

It translates to improving the efficiency of the processes contributing to pollution. Consequently, they won’t pollute as much as they could have done if nothing was done about it.

For instance, it would be hard for everyone to shift to renewable energy simultaneously. There’s the financial constraints, limited resources, and a lack of ample workforce to facilitate the transition.

However, even a small percentage of shifting to renewable energy can make a huge difference. It means that carbon emissions will reduce, which the environment would appreciate.

Besides, if the progress continues, the changes will impact the environment positively. Before we know it, a huge number of people will have stopped polluting the environment.

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Ways of Preventing Pollution from Derailing Sustainability

For sustainability, people need to do something about pollution. It could be in various forms, including the following;

  • Pollution prevention, as illustrated above, can see the planet achieve sustainability.
  • Proper disposal of waste could also ensure that toxic substances don’t reach the environment
  • Treating water is a great way of preserving this rare yet important natural resource
  • Reusing avoids too much waste sparing land for other things such as sustaining the increasing population instead of harboring landfills
  • On the other hand, recycling reduces the need to use other raw materials. Since it means using old materials to create new products, it can conserve their sources which could be forests necessary for a sustainable ecosystem


How does pollution relate to sustainability? It is hard, if not impossible, to achieve sustainability without managing pollution.

Fortunately, there are various ways of doing so. If there isn’t much one can do about the waste release, controlling it to prevent pollution is enough under such circumstances.

As long as people dispose of harmful substances properly, they won’t be a nuisance to the environment. However, if it isn’t necessary to use these substances, don’t do it.

Prevention of pollution and sustainability come hand in hand. Since there is a need to lead sustainable lives, preventing it is critical. That’s especially with the current trend.