Wednesday, April 29, 2009

I am Sick of Green

For the past several months, when my attention is not elsewhere, I have been noticing more and more the assualt on us all about the need to be "green" that "green is cool," that "green is beautiful."

If I hear one more thing about being green, I think I may turn green myself, as in that green color you get just before you throw up!.

Look, I love the outdoors and I want to save as much of our environment as possible so that my girls have parks to play in, forests to hike in, beautiful country to look at. We do our "part" but for far more practical reasons.

First, we recylce because it cuts down on the trash we generate in our house. I do this not just because it is environmentally friendly, but because in my development we only have trash collection once a week and I don't like to have to store so many bags of trash until the collection happens.

Second, we have energy efficient, compact flourescent bulbs, not because they are "green" (remember they contain mercury which is not a "green" metal), but because they cut down my astonomically high electric bill. Ditto for turning the the air conditioning thermostat up when no one is home. Ditto for turning the heat down when no one is home (it is natural gas heating, but the point is the same.

Third, we do teach our girls about respecting the environment so that others may enjoy it.

I am not opposed to other steps so long as being "green" doesn't cost me any more in greenbacks. That is the problem with the "green" movement is that I don't see how most of the efforts save money, create jobs or necessarily makes the world a better place.

Another for example is that it seems to be "green" to buy local produce. I don't have a problem with local produce, other than the fact that here in Maryland, I don't see a lot of orange trees, or banana trees. I also like other fruit that you just don't find much of here. Now, I like to take the girls to the local orchard and pick apples and other fruit and do so because I like to support that local business, not because it is "green." But if I can get apples or organges, or grapes or anything else cheaper at my grocery store, why should I "buy local" just because it is "green." And I don't buy the idea that it is necesarily "green" to do so because there are less shipping costs.

People embrace green ideas not because they are green or at least not just because they are green. They do them for other incentives (like my light bulbs) and most likely because it doesn't cost them extra to do so. But if I didn't realize real costs savings from some of my efforts, I am not likely to indulge in those behaviors.

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