Could it be, the Green Revolution has Finally Arrived

Could it be that we've finally arrived? Environmental degradation has finally reached a point that warrants people to listen. In my undergraduate work I studied biology with an emphasis on ecology and the working ecosystems of the natural world. I recall one particular course titled, "Industrial Ecology" which focused on the ways that industry has impacted the environment. I will tell you that it's easy to be upset when focused on the vast ways that humans have desecrated the planet earth. However, lately I think that maybe we've arrived in this state of awareness that is actually making a difference.

I noticed on the cover on the Wall Street Journal that Intel is now promoting that "Every Day is Earth Day". A local bank in the Madison area has prided itself on offering "Green Options." Another area home builder prides itself on having all of its homes "Green Built Certified". Any builder can follow these standards but some have actually taken the next step to obtain an official certification. I've been considering going back to school for my MBA and noticed that some schools boast of their environmental and social responsibility in the business world. Could it be that the Inconvenient Truth, Exxon Valdez spill, and other scientist warnings were enough to make a difference in the way that humans operate as stewards of the earth?

In South Central Wisconsin one can now search for properties with "environmentally friendly" features such as: Green Built Certified, Energy Star Certified, Energy Star Appliances, and Energy Assessment Available. Some people looking to do some remodeling might consider looking at Focus on Energy. This program offers education, but also financial incentives for home-owners and businesses to improve their energy efficiency. I have always known that energy efficiency was a good thing, but it's even nicer when I know of a way to get $250 simply by converting an old electric water heater to gas. Or if you're looking to update some of those old light fixtures you can receive up to $15 back. Need a new gas furnace or boiler then you could receive $150 or $400. What a great way to update your home and save money on energy costs at the same time.

Have you read the last issue of Madison Magazine? It has an entire issue devoted to living the Eco Good Life Now! Maybe they are referring to the garden of eden and if we simply buy this new eco-gadget-what-chama-call-it then life becomes bliss. Of course you may have only noticed the beautiful girl on the cover. She does kind of look like Eve. Of course, if you look inside you'll find articles about green household products, green retailers, green businesses, the green future, green clothing, green crafts, green coffee, green politics, green stylists, and everything you can possibly imagine about living green in Madison, Wisconsin. Don't forget to check out the Going Green Expo May 2-4.

The more I look around, the more I see green/environmental/earth-friendly initiatives occurring in many aspects of our lives. And to that I say, Amen. The doom-sayers of the 1960's are finally being heard. As one who has cared about the environment for many years I'm happy to see this progression. However, have we come far enough in our quest to decrease our degradation to the environment? At what point have we "arrived"? Or is this an ongoing challenge with an unclear destination?

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