Filed under: Energy + Climate, J840 Week 2, Society + Media | Tags: energy, going green, media
I slightly wince at my computer screen as I type in the darkness of my lower level. My lights are off in an effort to conserve energy and I’m downstairs because it’s the coolest place in the house. A bead of sweat nearly develops on my brow as my thermostat’s set higher in another eco-friendly effort. I believe a little “Black & Blue”, like a bruise, to your daily living habits and/or to your wallet are necessary for considering oneself as being “Green”.
Becoming “Green” may be like the old saying, “No pain, no gain.” Rather than environmental efforts that are simply a by-product of convenience or saving money in the short-term, real environmental action must include sacrifices both financially and socially.
As an example of sacrifices, in a radio interview on the “Brian Lehrer Show” (4/20/2007), NY Times Columnist Thomas Freedman talked about rising the price of oil for 5 years. He said while it would produce short-term financial pain for consumers, it would force the development of energy alternatives, which would eventually drive down the price of oil for good. Freedman’s key to Environmentalism on a larger scale is higher governmental standards. And he said higher standards will drive innovation, and innovation will drive green (and green will drive to long-term financial savings and more jobs).
On an individual level, I think being green is holding oneself to higher standards, and to do that includes lowering ones “standard” of living. With all the confusing and contradictory messages on living green as reported in the New York Times article (“That Buzz in Your Ear Might Be Green Noise”), I believe sacrifice is a big part of determining what is, and what is not, green.
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