What is Green Living?

The definition of green living is a lifestyle which seeks to bring into balance the conservation and preservation of the Earth’s natural resources, habitats, and biodiversity with human culture and communities.

Proponents of sustainable living understand that we are neither separate from, nor unaffected by, our natural surroundings and that the direction of the human race is directly affected by the direction of the Earth’s environment in which we live.

We understand the need to embrace practices which have little or no negative impact on our environment both now and in the future, to reduce waste and consumption, to work with Nature in creating sustainable food systems and living arrangements, and to strengthen local communities and relationships.

In laymen’s terms, living green and sustainably means creating a lifestyle that works with Nature and does no long-term or irreversible damage to any part of the environmental web.

Of course, this definition gets confused when you considered things like special interests, differing scientific opinions, and things like “greenwashing”.

Every creature is better alive than dead, men and moose and pine trees, and he who understands it aright will rather preserve its life than destroy it. – Henry David Thoreau


The real definition of green living is often muddled with trendy, consumerist messages of “green” (or “greened”) products that are anything but. This is known as greenwashing: making an unnecessary, wasteful, unsustainable, or unethically produced product or service seem “green” or environmentally-friendly through advertising ploys, misinformation, or blatant dishonesty.

As green living gains popularity, greenwashing moves in to gain a profit. This isn’t always a bad thing. A step in the right direction is better than no step at all. But it’s important to differentiate between what is truly sustainable and what is simply “better than nothing”.

The Difference Between Green Living & Sustainability:

I think so. I see sustainability as the fully committed, hard-core stuff, and green living as the path to get there.

Another thing I tend to ask to help me know whether I”m making the best choice possible is “What are we sustaining?” Are we trying to sustain unhealthy foods or agricultural systems, or social systems that disconnect us from each other or the things that matter to us? “Green” products can’t bring us any more satisfaction than other products. Our choices need to not only be sustainable, but also sustain us on a personal or spiritual level.

Source: Sustainable Baby Steps