Can anybody clarify what is the main differences between Earth Science and Sustainable Living stack exchange sites? As I'm finding it a bit confusing where to ask and what kind of questions.

Both seems to be related to planet Earth and the environment.

How do I distinguish which question is the right to which site?

E.g. which site is the right to ask the questions about protecting Earth, rainforest, substitute of wood, seawater pollution or EPA questions?


2 Answers 2


Earth Science focuses on scientific questions: What effects does deforestation of the Amazon have on regional precipitation patterns? What greenhouse gases are emitted by hydro-power lakes in midlatitude mountain regions? How has replacing CFCs with FCFCs impacted stratospheric chemistry?

Sustainable Living focuses more on technology and personal choices. How can I tell what kind of wood to buy if I want to make sure it is sustainable? If I choose a Green Energy package in {country}, will it include biomass and hydro power even if those have some bad impacts? What kind of fridge might I buy if I want that it has no CFCs and no FCFCs?

Then there are questions related to policy. How does the London congestion charge affect urban air quality? How are emission targets enforced? Etc. This category is harder to place. Some fit here. Some on Sustainable Living. Some on Politics. Some on Economics. Perhaps some fit on two or three or four of those sites. I would judge it on a case-by-case basis. We can always migrate questions if the community thinks a question fits better elsewhere.


Gerrit's given you a great answer already. Let me add a bit, as a mod on Sustainable Living, aka Sustainability.SE.

Both sites cover the science of sustainability as it relates to systems and processes in nature: climate change, pollution, natural resources.

Earth Science also covers all of Earth's (and other planets') other natural processes: volcanoes, deep-ocean currents, river formation, glacier movement, and so on. Sustainable Living does not cover these.

Sustainability.SE covers those bits of the natural environment that intersect with human activities in some way, and most of those would be off-topic here on Earth Science - e.g. gardening, industrial production and city living

Here are some examples.

Off-topic here, on-topic at Sustainability.SE

On-topic at either site

On-topic here, off-topic at Sustainability.SE


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