Sustainability is defined as the attaining the needs of the present communities without having to compromise the ability of the future generations to attain their needs. The core part of sustainable principle dictates that the present generation’s quality of life should be improved without the use of the earth’s resources beyond their capacity. The sustainability advocacy is to the effect that individual’s behavior towards consumption and the means of production should be changed. The meeting of a community’s sustainability requires the partnership between different communities and the environmental agencies. In an evolving environmental field, it becomes a duty and responsibility of communities to spearhead the sustainable process (Carnegie, Nielsen, & Glover, 2000).
For a community to fully attain the status of sustainability, cleaner production programs have been widely established. Cleaner production has been used for years to shape the path of community’s sustainability. The term cleaner production has been used interchangeably with terms such as pollution prevention, waste minimization and clean technology. Cleaner production has been defined to mean the application of preventive environmental strategies to minimize the risk to human beings. The notable issue about cleaner production witnessed in the foregoing definition is the fact that the waste in the cleaner production is minimized. The definitions seek to present a problem solution situation in promotion of sustainability (Carnegie, Nielsen, & Glover, 2000).
The definition further carries an elaborate stand in showing that cleaner production is not an industrial problem but its impacts have a direct influence on the communities living styles. That serves as a reason as to why cleaner production is moving beyond the confines of industrial solutions to greater partnerships with communities to facilitate sustainable development. The partnership is extensive and includes The Natural Step Inquiry which fosters the setting of competitive practices to enhance community sustainability (Carnegie, Nielsen, & Glover, 2000).
How cleaner production has been successful in addressing the issues of sustainability
In the understanding that cleaner production and its purpose in promoting sustainability of communities, it is imperative to explore the working of the cleaner production. The assessment requires the use of systems approach in supporting cleaner production. The process of cleaner production has been generalized with supported upstream management. The process of cleaner production has been designed to include other procedures so as to achieve successful community sustainability. Cleaner production has been said to entail complex issues. Its success in management solutions towards sustainable development entails the efforts towards bridging the gap between what has been achieved and what needs to be achieved. The clear analysis is to the effect that for sustainability achieved assists in preventing the present and foreseeable environmental decline. The need to have an in-depth consideration on the upstream instead of focusing on the forces of production is essential in understanding the success of cleaner production (Carnegie, Nielsen, & Glover, 2000).
The success of the cleaner production process has been achieved by making the complex issues simple. In order to have the sustainable community through clean production, system thinking is incorporated whereby the entire concept of the system is considered in whole. The system thinking entails the ascertaining of the system’s output, input and the sketch of the boundary. The cleaner production appears independent but it has interlinked subsystems. The emergent properties of the system are diverse and are sometimes known as production redesigned. The material substitution in the production seeks to redefine the entire production process. The requirements of the community and the consumers are balanced to strengthen the sustainability practice. Cleaner production may appear to be a major system but it ought to be remembered that it is a subsystem of environmental management. The chain of major systems does not end with the environmental management since it is also a subsystem of sustainable development (Carnegie, Nielsen, & Glover, 2000).
In addressing the issues of sustainability, the hierarchy of the subsystems linked with cleaner production which works on an interdependence position in maintaining sustainable environment in communities. The systems have the independent element but they achieve their functions through a link with the other systems. The coordination of the systems has an acknowledging that a holistic integrity can be reached without the presence of scientific reductionism. The reduction analysis is not the integral part of cleaner production but the understanding of the relationship between different systems. In the systems analysis, it is important to note that material substitution is a core element in the cleaner production practice. As mentioned earlier, cleaner production is not only an industrial problem as put forth by various definitions considered. Organizations working towards achieving cleaner production have shifted their focus from industrial focus only to mobilize communities to work together (Carnegie, Nielsen, & Glover, 2000).
The community and industry partnerships are encouraging the environmental lobby groups and the industries to form a partnership. The alliances formed between the industry and other communities. However, it should be noted that communities will only support cleaner production initiatives on invitation by the industry. It is not automatic for the community to back up the cleaner production without a clear understanding of the essence of sustainability. The understanding ought to be on cleaner production specifically. The concerns on community sustainability have clearly shown that the first essential step is having a community which has a deep understanding of environmental management. The community partnerships are pegged on the said understanding. The knowledge becomes the backbone of sustainable actions. Major support of both formal and informal sustainable development education has been engineered by the government and other sustainability lobby groups to enlighten communities on their role in sustainable development and the cleaner production process. Cleaner production can only come to fruition if the overall mission involves the community’s participation (Carnegie, Nielsen, & Glover, 2000).
The education process becomes an emergent property whereby cleaner production derives its momentum. Different organizations allover the world and other concerned sustainable development agencies have embraced sustainable approach towards community education. The process of cleaner production is made up of three main steps. First, is to reduce all the materials that are derived underneath the Earth’s crust. On the other hand, the community is required to reduce the waste that rests on the Earth’s outer surface. The community in this case gets a chance to conform to the guidelines of promoting sustainable community by taking part in reducing the waste created. Thirdly, the industry at this point joins the community in reducing the interference on biodiversity and the resources which are above the Earth’s surface. Fourth, the practices adopted in the cleaner production must strive to create social equity. This essentially means that whenever there is a conflict between the interests of the community and the industry, a balance which settles the conflict fairly ought to be adopted. The sustainable community is managed and clearly understood by the use of various principles and assumptions which illustrate the process of cleaner production (Carnegie, Nielsen, & Glover, 2000).
The collective action towards sustainable communities is based in various assumptions. There are some which have great relevance in promoting sustainable development. The first assumption states that the community must appreciate the fact that a good practice is happening within the organization. The assumption does not depend on the community only since the good practice is assumed to take place in the industry’s dealings. In addition, changes in the communities have indicated that communities have confidence in supporting a practice in the community if they are aware of the aspects of the past about the practice. It is therefore follows that the community should be oriented on the past practices so as to give it the staunch support. Thirdly, the journey towards sustainable communities is very beneficial if positive practices are founded to back it up. The assumptions have through out time become the essential questions which have triggered community change in the approach of sustainable development. The natural step approach has been integrated with community education to foster sustainable innovation (Carnegie, Nielsen, & Glover, 2000).
The foregoing discussion has clearly indicated that in the recent past cleaner production has gone through significant changes. These changes have majorly been to incorporate the communities working and the move from upstream from management activities. The need for cleaner production to overstretch from industry to community participation has been witnessed. The understanding that sustainable communities can only be created when the surrounding complexities are well understood has been considered. The integral principles of sustainable communities’ creation and cleaner production are to be simplified. The essential community education is considered as a sub system of cleaner system. Various theories and assumptions are fostered to explain cleaner production.