Green Week

I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that it is “Green Week.” There is a boatload of events, especially this weekend. I will attempt to add them as I find them. I will be out of town this weekend starting Friday, so I can not attend.

I’m usually not very enthusiastic about Green Week (or Earth Day), and this year is no different. Network television has been flooded with commercials by oil companies that try to make us feel better about giving them money. Cable channels like the Home and Garden Network feature hyperbolically titled shows like “20 things you can do to save the planet.” Of course these are not necessarily bad things. However, it can leave the public with the false impression buying a hybrid car or Compact Fluorescent Light Bulbs is all we will need to do in order to cope with a planet with a finite amount of resources.

Fortunately, the Star had a feature on a couple living in Herron-Morton place who seem to get it. I actually know Anne Laker (sort of), so perhaps I’m biased, but I’m please to see that the couple’s mentality goes beyond their “green” home. The paper version of the Star also features an article with a local builder who has an informative blog that I have linked in my “Resources”. He also seems to “get it”. He mentions that remodeling an existing building will invariably be greener than constructing a new building, and that infill is far superior to green field development in most cases.

This is the time of year when you will hear a lot of pitches about going green. Unfortunately, you will not hear much talk about “green” basics such as public transportation, bicycling, infill development, or walkable neighborhoods. Where people decide to live is a huge factor in just how green they actually are. This is not always an easy decision, especially for parents. Improving our school system is imperative, and it is an issue that I have not yet addressed here. For a primer on some of the IPS initiatives, a good place to look is this month’s version of Urban Times. The print version is the most informative, if you can find it.

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