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Wants or Needs?

Is having the latest technology a want or a need?

How often do you get a new cel phone or mp3 player? Did you really need a new model? Do you consider the environmental impact of these purchases? If you are addicted, how can you break your addiction?

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Wants or Needs?

Recent posts:

EliasRpwm   2021-10-18 02:31:53

Go less by transport and walk more

Reduce meat consumption

Reduce the use of electronic devices

Use less electricity and do things naturaly

Unplug chargers when not in use

Buy fewer applicances

Open the windows insted of turning on the fan

Wear second hand clothes

Use reciclable bags instead of new plastic ones


Drink more water

Walk more

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poptart234   2021-10-09 15:09:03 (Last post: 2021-10-16 10:13:43)
Needs ≠ Wants

When we're shopping, we might get carried away with the number of items we buy. We could see a really good deal or perhaps just be captivated by a certain object and tell ourselves something along the lines of "my life depends on whether or not I get it." But the waste we eventually cause with the clutter we give away causes a negative impact on the environment. By reusing the things we already have, we reduce our environmental impact. And by buying less, we not only help the planet—but we also leave a little more money in our pocket.

Bryson D.   2021-10-11 18:06:10

I 100% agree with this. I feel that I sometimes am guilty of this myself, for when I'm at the mall especially I'll often find myself getting carried away with buying things that I don't necessarily need. I think if people living in richer countries (such as the United States) could learn to live more simple and less lavish lifestyles, that would be a great step towards climate change, as it would mean that less products are being manufactured.

PennyWang   2021-10-11 21:20:01

Buying what we need is environmental friendly, but at the same time, I notice that it is opposite what marketing is usually aiming for. Marketing is to make customers feel that they need something and create anxiety, leading them to buy the product to cure that anxiety. I wonder if marketing could be used to compensate for this harm to the enviroment.

Ball1   2021-10-14 19:12:56

Yeah, I also get caught up in shopping sometimes too. I like buying a lot of food from Costco because I'm always hungry, but I try to pay attention to how much I buy and where I buy it from.

wald07   2021-10-15 15:51:32

I feel like this just goes without saying, yet we don't pay enough attention to this aspect of society and environmental disregard

Ben Mark   2021-10-16 10:13:43

I agree with this as well. I think a lot of the things that people buy are not actually necessary, and in many instances people will buy things that they only use once and then throw away or forget about.

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lusap789   2021-10-13 09:29:54
Wants or Needs?

We should consider our needs first before our wants. If you use your money on things you want, you can use your money more wisely for the things you need. When you do something, always ask yourself, "Do I need it? How is this going to benefit me or others?" This can help you become a better decision maker, especially for the environment and if you want to keep it healthy.

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Hannatara   2021-10-12 16:12:29
Wants or Needs

Technology has become an obsession for most people. People saying they need the new Iphone or need the new Macbook. When in reality they don't need it, they might not even want it. There has become this social pressure to always have the newest and the best stuff, where if you don't have the best stuff you are somehow worth less.

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Danek   2021-10-05 04:39:12 (Last post: 2021-10-11 13:39:44)
Wants or Needs?

I think that buying the latest technology any time something new releases is definitely a want not a need. It's both bad for the environment and bad for your financial status to keep buying new devices even though your old ones still work and are up to date.

LucasCa   2021-10-05 09:11:40

I agree, I feel that the need to buy the new model every year is a terrible for the environment and it makes so much unneeded e-waste for the planet. It's sad how phone companies almost encourage by making the releasing so many new phones so these people always buy them; Phone companies make so much money from the idea so it's not they are going to discourage it.

jhernandez   2021-10-10 21:29:38

@LucasCa, I agree about the phone companies having to take some of the blame for the e-waste and carbon footprint by pushing out new phones all the time.  It would be great to hear about what these companies are doing to offset their carbon footprints or how they're doing something for our planet instead of just taking to make their products.  Bottom line it's about profit for them.  But I guess as long as we keep buying they'll keep making and selling.

kristy_y   2021-10-10 22:15:12

yup i totally agree with this but sometimes you just gotta get a new one when your old one breaks or the battery health is just bad
i personally just dont understand why you would have to get the new model the moment it comes out. it just seems unreasonable to me as each phone creates a lot of co2 omissions when it was made

Rowan54   2021-10-11 13:39:44

I definitely agree with this take. One thing that I can also agree with overall is the concept of wants versus needs, because for the most part the stuff that causes a ton of emissions is wants and not needs. If we learned to cut down on certain things we buy and use, and the ways that we travel, we could significantly decrease our footprint.

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FieldenJoelsonQ   2021-10-09 00:50:29
Planned obsolescence

While constantly replacing your devices for the newest generation is arguable more of a want than a need, sometimes it is caused by unavoidable failures. So called "planned obsolescence" is when companies create their devices to last around three years, so that the warranty is expired and there is a newer, shinier, better version available. It isn't in the best interests of companies to have long lasting products that never need to be replaced, due to both rapid technological improvement and money, and it isn't in the best interests of the environment to have companies negligent of their environmental impacts in favor of profit.
https://www.bbc.com/future/article/2016 … ce-of-tech

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JuAn Gonzalez   2021-10-08 23:58:51
The difference between wants or needs

People usually believe when they want something its necessary at the moment but its really not. Which could cause people people to confuse the differences between wants and needs. Most people have a desire to get new and popular stuff and consider it a need but its not it something you wants. A need on the other hand is something that is essential and necessary to you. But now a days people confuse both of these ideas. Which make them forget what they actually Need at the moment. Some examples of needs are food, electricity, water, a good working phone. So if you can differentiate a Want and Need you can help reduce the amount of money you spend all year long.

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SophieF   2021-10-08 23:28:40
Wants or Needs

As I’m doing more research on our carbon footprints, I’m noticing and understanding that the difference between feeding our wants vs. our needs is very important. Most humans have a WANT to get whatever is “trendy” or “stylish” at the moment, so it is a repeating occasion where people are constantly spending their money on unnecessary items that could be thrown away in very little time. This could cause people to forget what they actually NEED. It is important to focus our purchases on items we need because this will not only help reduce the amount of money we spend, but it will help our planet by reducing the waste too.

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SophieF   2021-10-08 23:13:56
Wants or Needs

As I’m doing more research on our carbon footprints, I’m noticing and understanding that the difference between feeding our wants vs. our needs is very important. Most humans have a WANT to get whatever is “trendy” or “stylish” at the moment, so it is a repeating occasion where people are constantly spending their money on unnecessary items that could be thrown away in very little time. This could cause people to forget what they actually NEED. It is important to focus our purchases on items we need because this will not only help reduce the amount of money we spend, but it will help our planet by reducing the waste too.

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Farah14   2021-10-08 21:40:32 (Last post: 2021-10-08 22:04:44)
The difference between a want and a need

People all around use money for irrelevant things. For example, some kids want a new phone or laptop even though they don't need it and some people might actually need it but can't afford it. I think we should be more considerate and recognize a want and a need, just because we want something we need to really consider if we will be using it in a couple of years or even needing it.

Dimah   2021-10-08 22:04:44

This is a great point! I completely agree with you! I believe kids grew up with the mindset that they can get whatever they want and not suffer any consequences, the earth later on has to suffer it for them. This is extremely inconsiderate, you explained this very well!

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Dimah   2021-10-08 21:53:50
We don't always need what we want.

It's common knowledge that humans are selfish. We use our money for useless and irrelevant items, that we will no longer want in a few years. There are people who do not have access to anything and yet are still extremely grateful for all they have. I have noticed that the more someone is given the more they want. So when we go to buy something, we must truly consider whether that purchase is a want or a need. Will it still be useful in a couple years, will we still be interested in it in the future, will there be a time where we want to throw it away? Truly consider these things and then buy what you need. People buying things they want and not need, always ends up harming our ecosystem. That item will end up in the ocean, beaches, public areas, etc.

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robertsdottir   2021-10-04 08:13:55 (Last post: 2021-10-08 21:19:30)
Wants or needs

The difference between wanting something and really needing something is big. You can have 10 sweaters but still want the cool one you saw in the store... But then if you don't have any sweater at all, you need to buy yourself one. It is important to think twice before buying something you maybe think you need but really you don't. I have made that a rule for myself to not buy things that I don't need. It both saves me some money and helps the earth! it's a win-win situation:)

Jasmin0525   2021-10-07 10:28:00

I totally agree, when i want something i first think about how often i would use it or how it would benefit me. I also try to consider the things i already have and bought. I try to not spend too much or buy too much unless i really really want it or need it. It helps because i don't spend too much on useless things and only really buy myself nice things a few times a year.

Muhammad R   2021-10-07 10:31:18

I agree, my brother sometimes just buys things that look cool which bothers me because after less than a day, he throws it away which is a big waste. For myself, I put a limit to how often I could buy something I want but don't really need.

ndkn on MC   2021-10-07 19:34:34

I agree as well. I usually don’t purchase something, unless I do it by impulse. I try to cut down on buying things that I just “want”.

Diego Berber   2021-10-08 16:57:04

I totally agree, I believe we should think twice when buying things and determining wether we need those things or we just want it. It benefits both the earth and us.

Inna. L   2021-10-08 20:55:28

That is a good idea, I think we should also open up the idea of shopping in thrift stores or stores where people can donate their own unneeded items and buy other ones you need. Many people see this as disgusting and weird, but I think it's a really good idea, I often find a lot more thing I'm interested in than goin shopping in stores for brand new items, there are also a lot more cool things in stores like these, and it's really not that dirty, you just need to wash it. Also I think siblings clothes are also really good, many people dislike getting clothes from their siblings, but I think getting clothes from my sister is really cool, we both have the same likings and style and her clothes are generally in good shape. Also when you live in a big family, a lot of personal things just fly out the window, you find yourself sharing literally everything with everyone. But overall, I think that we can have our wants by getting them in a better way.

Umut   2021-10-08 21:19:30

I agree who needs 10 sweaters 1.don't waste the stock of sweaters which others might need 2. don't add to your life a hassle of "which sweater should I wear" and 3. don't waste money.

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Muhammad R   2021-10-08 20:01:08
What's more important, what you want or what you need?

The problem is that a lot of people spend their money on what they want and not actually need it. For example, a kid sees a new toy that looks cool and tells their parent/s to buy it for them, and then very soon (maybe less than a week or month) they get bored of it and most likely throw it away. And then there's other people that have trouble making money who understand the importance of buying what you need and not want.

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Nivlac   2021-10-08 16:08:50 (Last post: 2021-10-08 17:11:05)
Safety, or not?

Having the latest tech is almost always a want. You don’t need the new iPhone X 15.7.9 Platinum-Gold. However, when it comes to safety, you always at least should have the new model. This is because safety is one of the biggest contributions technology has made to this world. Don’t waste your money on a PC gaming tower when you could be upgrading your fire suppression system. Use your finances to make you and your family and friends safer instead of spending them on entertainment. It may also be a need if you require a specific laptop with specific features for your job. Those may be the only two exceptions. Feel free to reply if you think of any more.

TarunKommoju   2021-10-08 17:11:05

I agree but what if someone's profession is gaming?

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Bijan   2021-10-08 10:33:29
Shopping and Recycling

Shopping for items that you desire is completely fine as long as you play your own role in recycling. If you buy glass, plastics, or paper items, you should recycle some of the parts after you are done using your item.

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lena64   2021-04-26 11:30:00 (Last post: 2021-10-08 09:11:34)
Wants or Needs?

Before we purchase an item we must take some time to think about whether the item is necessary or whether we just like the thought of owning it smile

DobaBOD   2021-04-29 11:39:58

This is very true. We must take time to think if the item we’re buying is an item that we MUST buy. I think the reason people don’t already do this is because of all of the emotions they may have felt that morning, or that week, or that month; that make them think this item will make them feel better. Whether consciously or subconsciously, it’s a coping mechanism most people don’t realize is happening. We must find different ways to relax our mind and emotions and think about how our decisions will effect our planet and ourselves in general.

owmeBOD   2021-05-02 13:17:01

I agree with the comment above because it explains how emotions can get the best of us and can cloud out judgment. Just between Thanksgiving and New years, Americans produce about ten million tons of trash per week. Things like Christmas cards and packages are sent around the world adding to our landfills. Especially during the pandemic, there has been an increased number of impulse online purchases, that people thought would make them feel better. The amount of waste that is being produced is significantly higher than in the past.  If we want to be able to keep the environment that has kept us alive, we have to start thinking more about what we are buying and why we are buying it.  If we keep on the path that we are on now, we will end up destroying what we have worked so hard to create.

wushashah   2021-10-08 09:11:34

Agreed, many people buy items on impulse instead of really thinking through if they need it or not. I think more people need to have the mindset of making do with what we already have. Less of buying unnecessary items means less packaging wasted and thrown into the trash, which is always good for the environment.

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Julie Chao   2021-10-07 13:47:18 (Last post: 2021-10-08 01:44:49)

Instead of online shopping why can't you just go in person? Online shopping uses a lot of packaging and wastes a lot of gas.

MY   2021-10-08 01:44:49

Additionally, we must use cars or other vehicles to go to the stores and it also makes air pollution :DD

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Hannah Le   2021-10-07 13:21:23 (Last post: 2021-10-07 23:12:42)
Is is necessary?

Is the newest Iphone really necessary, can't you just stick with the 11? Us buying these newest creations over and over again effect the environment more than you know. Since they are mass-produced, they release many harmful chemicals into the air, and this isn't just one factory, it's many.

Kurisu   2021-10-07 23:12:42

I agree with you, every year they release new iPhones that have very little changes to them, yet many people buy it. Yes, the creations of them harm the environment, they are getting rid of natural resources for basically the same thing every year. I believe that these companies should wait for a few years and then make phones that have a bigger differences on them, reducing a bit of the chemicals and the usage of natural resources.

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shaun_s   2021-10-07 21:26:46
a warm, long shower was not needed (no showers were harmed)

Say you took a long, warm shower. Sounds nice right? But it also affects the environment. The water is wasted and contributes to droughts, and the heating system for your water may also release gases. The question is did you need the shower, or did you want it? Honestly, you needed that shower, it's nice to clean yourself. The real problem was what you wanted. You wanted the shower to be warm and you wanted it to be long. So next time you take a shower, consider taking a shorter one because it's what both you and our environment need.

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Saeedih1348   2021-10-07 21:08:58
Do we need plastic?

Plastic is harming earth. Not everyone who uses plastic recycles it, which is even more harmful to Earth. We do not need to use plastic. There are many other materials we could use instead of plastic. It might be more work for us, but it is worth it. For example having to wash a glass plate but throwing away a plastic one.

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Shril   2021-10-07 13:22:06 (Last post: 2021-10-07 20:19:36)

Sometimes people always do what they want, like taking long showers. Many people just stand there and think about their life choices. I think we should do that without the running water. It help the Earth a lot, since everyone does it. Procrastinate out of the bathroom, not in it.

Smith_5227   2021-10-07 20:19:36

I agree. If people take shorter showers that would help the environment a lot.

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Julie Chao   2021-10-07 16:53:10

Do you really need those new and trendy clothing every single month? Many people spend hundreds of dollars on things they don't even need. Sometimes, it'll even end up in the back of your closet and never touched again.

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1234Jack4321   2021-10-07 16:43:58
Wants or Needs?

I believe having the latest technology is a want not a need, but I do believe that sometimes new technology is necessary sometimes, for example when it relates to safety of living and or to protecting necessary parts of machinery. Most people when they buy new technology it’s a new phone or a new form of entertainment, this is not necessary when most people already have phones or tablets that work perfectly fine and can still provide entertainment still.

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nishkabaliga   2021-10-07 13:39:38
Excess purchases popularized by social media

I have noticed on youtube, it is popular to create videos showcasing large "hauls" of things you buy. Usually, the hauls consist of items that are not needs but rather wants, like clothing or toys. I came across a video the other day where this person unboxes thirteen new phone cases for their phone, so they can switch it out and match their outfit. I was so appalled at how they didn't consider that the phone cases are made of plastic and the toxic chemicals used to make them are harmful to our environment. I recommend not over purchasing from companies, and consider needs over wants. They probably felt that since they had enough money for that many phone cases, that it's okay to splurge, but thirteen for a new phone is pushing the limit.

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phane7551   2021-10-07 12:41:07
Consumption and Carbon Footprints

Lowering consumption to reasonable levels can help lower waste and therefore lower carbon footprints. High consumption has a large effect on the environment, as there is a larger waste of natural resources.

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sahilsingh5616   2021-10-07 11:27:13
Buy used or refurbished

Many people like myself do like getting the newest laptop or that shiny new phone with “the best camera ever”, but it might be a wiser decision to buy used or refurbished products. Many of these products have been lightly used and they can do almost everything that these phones can do. These can also apply to other things like buying cars and buying houses. If you buy a used car, you are still getting a fairly great car for a good price. Used houses are usually cheaper and still serves the same purpose. I think that us as a society should start trying to lean away from buying new and trying to buy used.

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wushashah   2021-10-07 11:14:02
Wants or Needs

Personally, I don't really buy or receive that many new electronics, maybe once a year at the very most. I usually only buy a new electronic once something really piques my interest, which there isn't many of which that do. I try to make do with what I already have at home. Each electronic I get I usually keep for around 4 years or longer. I don't really have a need to buy every new thing that gets released, so I'll try to continue to have that mindset.

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Jasmin0525   2021-10-07 10:23:32 (Last post: 2021-10-07 10:30:43)
Wants and Needs of Kids and what parents should do

Lots of kids, nowadays want the latest phones or xbox. They would want five monitors and two new iphones. They really don't need it, especially since most kids get distracted and do worse in their school because of it. Parents should give them enough devices to do their homework and time to play. They could also give them certain amount of time to use them.

Saeedih1348   2021-10-07 10:30:43

I agree. Phones distract kids from doing their school work.

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girlboss   2021-10-06 19:09:18

Discussion Thread Name: Wants or Needs?
Your Post:
People say that individual footprints don’t matter, because corporations are the ones causing the vast majority of pollution. While it is true that corporations are the biggest culprits, our own actions absolutely play a part; we are the ones buying products from them, after all. The problem with individual actions lies in creating a large enough change in an amount of people that will actually have any impact. You might recycle plastic bottles, but there’s a reason Americans produce twice as much carbon as the global average. Reducing carbon emissions to a sustainable level requires more than minor actions; it would require fundamental changes in the consumerist culture of the US. Consumption is ingrained so deep in our society that our happiness is derived from a constant cycle of buying the newest technology and fashion. If we instead placed our highest priorities on the functionality of our purchases, we would solve the problem at its root.

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reynir   2021-10-06 14:19:50
wants or needs?

Do we really need to use cars this much or could we walk, cycle or use public transportation more?

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shrimps07   2021-10-06 13:49:51
Is That New Phone Really Necessary?

I see a lot of people where I live upgrading to the newest iPhone every year. In my opinion, this is unnecessary and wasteful, because most of the time the old phone works perfectly well. They only want the phone, but they act as if they need it.

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A Chau (canada)   2021-10-01 19:49:01 (Last post: 2021-10-05 09:50:59)
Do I Really Need It?

Wanting something is way different then needing something. For starters when you need something your life depends on it. If you don't have it you won't live another day (that's pushing it a bit). Some examples are food, water, electricity, health care, and medicine. Now how do you tell the difference? For me every time I go out I ask myself if this is something I need, if it's something I will use and, if it's something that is useful to me. Wants aren't necessarily bad. Some examples of wants could be a new book, or a new jacket that was on sale. Wants can help provide joy and reassurance at times. So, next time you go to a store ask yourself the three questions. Do I need it, will I use it, and, is it useful. Now why should we think about this? What will this do? If we reduce the amount of wants then the emissions from what produces  them will decrease.

arudygarcia   2021-10-04 19:50:04

We don’t really need half of the stuff we have, but it makes us live comfortably and happily.

brietb03   2021-10-05 09:50:59

even though we dont necessarily need it to live we do need unnecessary things to maintain our happiness. If we would only buy things that we need to live we wouldn´t be happy and happiness is clearæy a necessary thing to live. Of course we have to weight out and say no to ourselves if we are buying too much of the things we dont need but they are still in a way necessary to our life quality.

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rebekkagd   2021-10-04 08:00:32
wants or needs

I think some form of technology is important, but not the latest iPhone or computer. All it needs to do is work. Clothes are a need, but people should try to buy used clothing, you can find many gems in the goodwill and from local people online. I think it is often hard to resist buying things online from all over the world, but I try my best not to purchase too much, only needs.
I don't think too much about the consequences of buying a new smartphone, but now I definitely will.

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aiden.urbad   2021-10-03 21:32:50
wants or needs?

I think that sometimes getting new technology is a need but most of the times it is a want. For example when you break your phone and you need to get a new one to stay in contact with people but people who just get a new phone whenever the new model comes out is a want and not a need. People rarely think about the carbon footprint of a new phone they just think of the size, camera, and color. So it really depends on your situation to determine if it is a want or need.

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Emilianono   2021-10-02 13:26:18 (Last post: 2021-10-02 17:16:55)
Wants or needs?

I don’t get new technology often, I usually stick with it for a while. Some people get the new model of phone or the new game console the second it comes out and that’s their choice I'm not bashing on them for that. What I think is you should get the new model of whatever and hold off for a few models OR buy a phone off of Facebook marketplace or Craigslist.

Q.Abc   2021-10-02 17:16:55

I agree with what you're saying, people buy new things as soon as possible even if what they have can still be used. I believe that this is a very unhealthy practice that humans have adopted. This should be applied, not just to electronics but to appliances in general. Unless, of course, this new technology doesn't release many or as much carbon than the model before, or it is less dangerous to use, then you should change it for your safety, and for the environment's safety. All in all, people should not get replacements for things that could still be usable.

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Ambrie   2021-10-02 14:43:16
Wants or Needs?

From what I’ve seen, when buying the latest technology, the environmental impact of our actions is rarely the first thing to pop into peoples’ minds.  But, as the carbon calculator shows, these purchases can add up to a much bigger picture, one that affects the whole planet.  A problem that some people may face when trying to have a smaller carbon footprint is differentiating between what is a necessity and what is a luxury.  While many things that we buy are useful, we don’t necessarily need them to live our lives, and then there are the products we purchase purely for entertainment.  Telling the difference can be difficult, seeing as humans use so much technology without even thinking about it.  In order to live our best lives while still trying to reduce our footprint, it’s important to find a balance in which we can both enjoy life and not go overboard with unnecessary shopping trips that can harm the environment.

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