I saw this post by the National Trust for Historic Preservation, written by Priya Chhaya and wanted to share it with our readers. It is an interesting perspective on the green movement.
Change your light bulbs. Recycle. Reuse. Unplug your appliances. Use a clothesline. The path to energy efficiency does start at home and its true—we can all be green.
But what about the next step? For years historic preservationists have been adamant that the greenest building is almost always the one that has been already built; that preserving the past also means protecting the planet. We at the National Trust for Historic Preservation have embraced this belief in every aspect of our work… But did you know that there is a sustainability track at the National Preservation Conference in Nashville, the National Main Street Center’s latest issue of Main Street News asks “How Green is Your Main Street?” and the latest Forum Journal (one of the perks of Forum membership), takes a look at “Positioning Preservation in a Green World” where one can truly go a deeper shade of green.
But of course that’s not all. Preaching to the choir is one thing, but we have to somehow reach the peanut gallery—those individuals who can’t see why this all matters, or even what historic preservation has to do with saving the environment. I know that some of us do that well, while others falter when it comes to strategies for communicating this information to our widespread and often not-so-engaged audiences. How do we get them to look past their own homes and lifestyle to seeing the world through a pair of green colored glasses?
I don’t have the answer—but maybe you do.
Priya Chhaya is the program assistant in the office of Training and Online Information Services at the National Trust for Historic Preservation.