It is really something how everything “green” is so in style right now. I often think about the reasons for this current focus and wonder if it will hold up as time goes by. I remember how alternative energy was the big issue many years ago after the “oil crisis” with its mile long gas station lines. Some great thinking and innovation came out of that difficult situation, but as time went by, we seemed to forget. There were some who did their best to keep the issue on the front burner, but most of us slipped in one way or another. I know I stayed interested in the greening of technologies and lifestyles, but I did not always adhere as strictly as I should in my own life.
When energy and oil was reasonably priced, it was easy to forget and buy a bigger car or truck. It was easy to put off adding the extra layer of insulation to the attic. Once the winter heating bill became a huge monthly burden, I did the dirty job and what a difference it has made. The second floor of our house is much warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer. I am sure we are saving a bunch on the heating costs.
This time we are being hit by a double whammy of both high energy costs and a changing world economy. It sometimes seems like the U.S. might never again be the economy the rest of the world looks to as the shining example of abundance and comfort. Even when the U.S. economy does recover, we will still face competition for resources that countries like China, India, and many others will also need.
Because of this, I think the green changes happening now have a better chance of becoming a permanent part of our lives than they did in the 1970′s. What do you think? Please take a look at the poll below and leave your opinion. Please expand on your answers in the comments. I hope we are able to make some of the lifestyle and technology changes that are being forced on us now a more comfortable and permanent part of the landscape.
Small changes can make a big difference in a huge country like the U.S. We do not need to make wholesale, difficult changes to save our way of life. We can be a successful and healthy country and still reduce our dependence on foreign energy sources. Many families and businesses will continue to need a big car or truck to make their lives work. But we can make those big vehicles more fuel efficient. And we can educate people to show how they can use less gas and save money by their choices of second cars. Very few families really need two big SUV’s or trucks.
I believe we can grow enough food for our needs and the needs of many others in the world. The current food shortages around the world are focusing attention on the food supply. With enough of a commitment I hope we can help grow the food the world needs sustainably, safely, and in a way that is healthy for the consumer, the farm workers, and the environment.
So what do you think? Will the coming, necessary changes be good ones? Will they be mostly “green”? And will they stick, or do we risk going back to our old ways if current crises are resolved? Leave a comment, answer the poll. Let us know what you think.