There is nothing wrong in earning money as such, if the money
were the side effect not the center of the green wave.
The green snobs
Marketing people found out that consumers talk about
ecology, social and environmental responsibility. Our need
for ecology is rooted in our identity creation, not
understanding for the problems Earth is facing. We hope to
buy the clear conscience and avoid to be accused for
destroying Earth by the future generations. That's why we
express "sofa responsibility" and believe that "being green"
is the answer for all evil. Excited green consumers become
green generation with Al Gore, Leonardo Di Caprio and many
other Hollywood stars as role models. Green has magnetic
attraction powers as prestige and status symbol that uses
very simple rhetoric -- if something is green it must be
good. It opened door to greenwashing phenomena - more money or
time are spent advertising being green rather than spending
resources on environmentally sound practices. It is about
selling products and services by appealing to our conscience
and need to stand for something meaningful.
The green generation drives the craze by spending
increasingly more money on so-called green products. Clothes
made from corn, hybrid cars, etc. Leonardo di Caprio bought
two Toyota Prius, made a movie about climate changes and
challenges and flies with private jet that on one trip
pollutes more than 4-wheel drive car in a year. Meanwhile
other green materialists admire his engagement and sins at
home: don't turn off the lights, buys paper bags every time
they shop at grocery store, fill trolley with ecological food
packed in plastic boxes, eat organic salad made of veggies
that traveled thousands kilometers before they landed on
their green plate.
Look at me I have green eyes. I am saving the
The most important are reciprocal advantages: companies get
better image and reason to increase prices, while consumers
are convinced that they do good work of saving the world by
buying and consuming. Nice and easy. Without any effort. We
do what we used to do -- consume and at the same time we
become better people. Two in one. What could be better for
consumers? We shouldn't be ashamed any longer because we
consumer. We can't be accused of being materialistic and
building our existence on consumptions. There is a meaning in
our consumers and it has a green color.
We need green realism.
We bathe in green while the crime against humanity is
committed by using biofuel. The latest news from the green
catwalk. Arnold Schwarzenegger fills his Hummer with biofuel
to justify his love to those CO2 monsters and prove he is pro
ecology. Green fuel, it couldn't be better. Now we can drive
a car without bad conscience. Unfortunately we overlook the
big picture. Production of biofuel is based on oil that
results in high CO2 emission. Nitrogen emission caused by
fertilizing fields with chemical fertilizers. Increasing food
prices and destroying forests. We want hybrid cars because
they were advertising as green. While the industry chooses
knowingly not to use the 2nd generation fuel produced from
more efficient cellulose, because they need to get money back
from the investments in biofuel production technology. Is it
green marketing? Yes if green means money.
While you read this article, there will be used around one
million plastic bags. They are very enduring and it takes a
long time before they decompose. That's why we choose to go
for paper bags. It costs just a couple of trees to produce
them. The real problem is not that we buy plastic bags; the
problem is that we use for about 15 minutes and then we throw
them away instead of storing them in responsible way. We are
bombed with the contradictory messages about green products.
Should I buy organic juice in bottle or in carton box?
Green is the category everyone wants to be because it gives
bonus points from consumers. Green category is synonym with
better image and income. But the green message isn't always
true. Consumers are helpless in the jungle of information,
facts and lack of transparency. Some may fear of being
cheated by buying something that has just green color.
Does green work
It is worth to remember that people aren't driven by facts.
The missing trust and the insecurity make them passive or in
the worst case negative towards green approach.
The green wave is fantastic but companies should improve
their technique to surf this wave. They shouldn't spend their
money on communicating green but doing green and prove they
are responsible by being engaged and introducing innovative
products and services that will actually have influence.
Changes come from the big ideas that are shifted into small
initiative in ordinary peoples lives. It is about giving good
reasons to consumers for becoming responsible for Earth,
climate and society. The green wave should be turned into
social movement, not fashion.
The last important thing to remember is that we can't make a
difference without effort. There are no easy solutions when
we talk about climate changes.