Daily Archives: November 14, 2007

Green is the New Thing

Wherever I turn, I hear people talking about green this and green that. No, I don’t mean the color. I am referring to eco-friendly, environmentalism. 

From Wal-Mart and its green purchasing initiative to my dad talking about his church putting in eco-friendly carpet, you would think the whole world has just gone crazy over saving the planet. Don’t get me wrong, I lead the recycling initiative at work, am looking for ways to cut my energy usage and love our National Parks. But I wonder if this is just another case of American “metooism.” Is this just another fad that will fade when An Inconvenient Truth can be found on the discount DVD rack for 99 cents?

Sustainability is a key principle in business now. The new idea is that green (ecological decisions) can save corporations lots of green ($$cost). I recently wrote an interview on the subject for the Pallet Enterprise (my day job). http://www.palletenterprise.com/articledatabase/view.asp?articleID=2454

What stuck out to me while working on the article is how difficult it can be to determine what is and what is not green. It all depends on your perspective and who is paying for the research.

I am all for cutting waste, reusing more stuff, reducing our impact on the planet, and being good stewards as God ordered Adam and Eve back at the beginning. At the same time, I am concerned about how people will use ecological propaganda to sell ideas and products to easily duped Americans. Thinking that you are doing something good for the planet is no excuse to blindly following the latest “green” campaign. Some of these efforts are worthwhile. Others are not.

Energy efficient light bulbs and cars make sense. “Saving forests” by using plastic products instead of wood products generally is not the best environmental decision.

Full disclosure – I do work with the forest products industry. But that doesn’t mean I am anti-environmental protection. Some of the best eco-warriors that I have ever met earn their living from the land in some way or another.

I believe trees are the answer as Dr. Patrick Moore, one of the founders of Greenpeace, said in his book Green Spirit (www.greenspirit.com). We need to use more wood products because that will make sure that more land is converted and used for forests. Otherwise, people might turn this land into new housing developments or strip malls. That is true deforestation.