Fragile Systems Hamper Sustainability

One need only look at the issues relating to the energy supply, and fuel supplies here in the UK at the moment to recognise that fragile systems are an issue for any society which aims for true sustainability.

I have spoken quite a lot about the importance of building resilience and reducing fragility at all levels and in all sectors. Whether we are looking at countries, businesses or individual households, a lack of focus on the basics – environment, society, justice of all kinds – increases the prevalence of crises of various kinds and will continue to do so.

Reducing fragility can mean things like:

  • Assigning value to the natural world (and recognising that value) and protecting and preserving it.
  • Looking at social systems and doing the right thing for people.
  • Using and valuing renewable resources.
  • Catching and storing renewables (in energy, battery storage can be key to avoiding issues with fluctuation in demand, for example).
  • Creating circular, closed loop processes.
  • Implementing internal systems which aid rather than hampering sustainable progress.
  • Investing in infrastructure at all levels. (Closing infrastructure gaps and looking to repair.)

But key to tackling fragility is coming to the understanding of the fallacy of constant growth. We can’t build better if the foundations are crumbling. Repair and improvement of existing systems is essential to build a better future for all.

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