In the video High School Students Invents a Bio-friendly Hay Bale Wrap, a broadcaster channel from CTV news (2016) presents a team of eighth and ninth-grade students working on solving one of the biggest environmental problems caused by burning or burying billions of plastics. The students invent an eco-friendly (YAY Bale) warp to be used by the farmer instead of the white plastic wrap. The students expound on the wrap properties which includes biodegradability and edibility achieved through the use of natural materials. However, the team opted to keep their trade secret and formula to themselves in the process of patenting the wrap. The team is unique and stands out for patenting an invention in their tender ages of fourteen and fifteen.
There has been renewed interest in eco-friendly products over the past few years. Eco-friendliness of a product implies that the product is not harmful to the environment (Oxford, n.d). However, it could be said that YAY Bale addresses a real world environmental problem in the short term. YAY Bale works to prevent the contribution of air and land pollution when people burn or bury billion pounds of plastics. In the long run, YAY Bale is not economical regarding the amount of natural resources used in its construction thus proving to be wasteful. Consequently, due to the vast natural resources used, the next generation is predicted to suffer from a lake of corn tree. According to Strange and Bayley (2009) No single generation should bear an undue burden(p. 26), thus, sustainable development is an intergeneration equity. People need to be equal from one generation to the next. Moreover, people not only think in the short-term or in a temporary way but also consider a balance in the future as well.
Regarding social and economic perspective, this initiative has failed to address the underlying problems related to social and economic standards. If the YAY Bale product is adopted as an alternative to plastic wraps, the long term effect will be more disastrous than its benefits to the society as many of those working in different departments of the chemical factories will be rendered jobless thus increasing the number of unemployed people in the community. Unemployment is a major social problem experienced in various countries of the world. Consequently, plastics factories will be on the losing end resulting to closing down of these plants. The closing down of these plants will lead to economic problems in various countries which will implement the YAY Bale product. Unfortunately, this initiative is a real improvement in the environmental sector, but on the other hand, it comes with a huge sacrifice on social and economic sectors posting a negative trade-off (Strange& Bayley, 2009). Thus, when thinking about sustainable development, one need to take into consideration all the three pillars which include, the environment, social and economic effects, together rather than focusing on one at the expense of the other. YAY Bale is an excellent innovation which addresses the environmental problem but fails to address the social and economic problems which are important parts of the peoples daily lives.
CTV Ottawa. (2016 May 10). High School Students Invents a Bio-friendly Hay Bale Wrap. [Video File]. Retrieved from ottwa.ctvnews.ca
Strange, Bayley. (2009). What is sustainable development.
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