Our allies at Sustainable Seattle are hard at work at a new data tool that will help residents and researchers all over the Puget Sound region to understand the big picture of sustainability.
The tool is a website called B-Sustainable, and although it's still in its early stages, you'll find there's quite a bit of material online already.
According to Acting Executive Director Sean Schmidt, the site is all about aggregating "actionable items moving toward sustainability." Exploring the site, you'll find lists of key indicators of sustainability at both personal and societal levels, with goals assigned for sustainability in the natural environment, built environment, social environment and personal environment.
Click deeper into any of these sections and you'll find information about where we stand with each goal, where we want to be and how we can get there. The site is full of maps, charts and other presentations of research that Sustainable Seattle has collected over the years. I can see this being a great tool for journalists, teachers, groups writing grants, and others who will benefit from complex content presented simply.
But what I think will make this uniquely appealing to the casual user is the site's "Take Action" component. Want to get involved? You can search out actions that you can take as an individual, as a member of a group, or as a professional. (Note: this segment of the site is still truly under construction -- you can see how it works, but very few action options are currently entered into the system).
As we head into a new phase of history for our region and our world, it's easy to feel helpless under the weight of the work that needs to be done. A tool like B-Sustainable will help members of the community not only to make sense of the important issues in the news, but also to learn how to take action on the issues that inspire them, and to connect with others who are fighting for the same vision.
Sustainable Seattle is gearing up for the official launch for B-Sustainable in fall 2009. In the meantime, we suggest you check it out and let them know what you think!
Image: Screen shot of B-Sustainable website, courtesy of Sustainable Seattle