Going Green

Going Green. Everyone’s doing it, just some are doing it better, faster and actually having an impact.

The other day I saw a shipment of cars on a truck trailer. They were covered with plastic wrap both inside and out. It made me think that if they didn’t wrap the cars shopping for vehicles could become more like picking apples. You could go dealership to dealership trying to find the one that is the least bruised and the proper colour….I now, my mind wanders into some odd territories.

Back to the point; going green in my mind will become the number one factor in companies dedicating more and more of their ad budgets to the wonderful world of digital. Why? It avoids printing and is a environment that the supporters, early adopters and evangelists of green are already comfortable using. In fact they are using it to organize themselves and make their lives more efficient or sustainable.

Many exciting recent developments in sustainable living are ideas that have emerged within this domain:

Freecycle is sustainability working with raw interpersonal technology. 4.5 million people have joined a simple community to enable you to pass on goods you might otherwise have thrown away.

Actics (active ethics) allows people to give each other and companies feedback. It is potentially what you could describe as ‘the missing link’ in corporate ethics.

WhatDoIdoWithThis is a site built by people in the building industry. In every building job there are materials left over – tiles, piping, bricks, timber. These were usually thrown on a skip. Now you can sell them on, to others who necessarily large quantities.

WalkIt.com, Seat61.com (the train traveller’s bible) and other information resources like that help you take control of how you travel

Localfoodshop.org is a virtual farmers market. It allows you to pick and buy food from individual local farms, who can then combine these orders to share some deliveries. It is the ethic of boxed deliveries combined with the convenience and choice of Ocado.

City Car Clubs uses the latest GPS and database systems to allow you to locate, book and use a car when you need one.

Blogs such as Treehugger, Grist but also the individual and little group of friends’ efforts (like GreenGirlsGlobal) allow people to share information in a rich and digestible form.

Facebook groups (and Yahoo groups before them) make organising a party, demonstration or circle of friends who share things as easy as clicking through a few screens and sending an invite.

Green pledge communities such as Pledgebank, TheNag.net and DoTheGreenThing give individuals the experience of being in a crowd of people all doing something that makes a difference and which therefore adds up to have a significant, visible effect.

Rentmineonline, Couchsurfing.com, the Barter Card and other schemes are addressing the need for all of us to share things (for instance homes) more efficiently. Economists reckon there are many trillions of dollars stranded in non-liquid assets; things that people own but get no value from until they sell them. That may also be the key to living better while using less. Why own a lawnmower? Why not share one with your whole street? Get to know your neighbours in the process.It’s a diverse list, and it’s probably just the start.

Since eBay launched I have been arguing that it’s almost as if consumerism is trying to rebalance itself. We do need a vision of a good life (beyond the American dream) that is also sustainable and – paradoxically – the answer may lie as much with fast routers as slow food?

The latest developments were found onhttp://greenormal.blogspot.com – The blog of John Grant, who is author of The Green Marketing Manifesto (Wiley, 2007)

A book I am 12 pages into (printed on post-consumer recycled paper using vegetable inks) and no I didn’t ask for a plastic bag from Chapters.

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