Here are more childhood memories from me, but this time not sci-fi or music-related. This is directly related to green issues and ecological awareness. Wonder of wonders!
When I was a kid growing up in the 1970s and 80s, there was a widespread campaign surrounding ecological issues. And it mostly it had to do with what we as consumers were doing to contribute to the problem. Words like ‘litterbug‘ became common parlance, and was something to avoid being. A lot of this was aimed at kids, with TV commercials about being responsible when it comes to where you’re putting your garbage.
One of the more high-profile campaigns was the ‘Give a Hoot, Don’t Pollute‘ campaign, with the requisite owl mascot called Woodsy ( voiced by Sterling Holloway who you may recognize as the voice of Winnie the Pooh). Take a look:
Then, of course, there was the famous weeping Native American, a living symbol of respect for the land in the minds of many in the era in which this clip was made:
Yet since those days, I think the rise of corporate responsibility, and the financial incentives attached to building green have taken an appropriate amount of pressure off of the single consumer. Where it’s still not a good idea to be a ‘litterbug’, now informed consumers are demanding a change in attitude and a change in practice from companies, who have historically contributed to the degradation of eco-systems arguably to a greater extent than those single consumers ever did.
And as a result of this, business and organizations relating to green building like the World Business Council For Sustainable Development (WBCSD) have coalesced around some large, corporate-scaled initiatives related to energy conservation, business roles in sustainable development, and long-term impact on ecosystems. Luckily too, green building incentives also are in place to make sure that a solid return on investment is also a part of the package.
The point is, there has been a paradigm shift now that our culture is more aware of the issues. As such, the pressure to push for green building best practices and environmentally responsible strategies does not rest solely on the consumer. This kind of evolution in business can only be a good thing.