Can Consumer Electronics be green? Will consumers care?

I’m sad. Today started with a fabulous high. I lost my phone yesterday (not good, not good at ALL) but when I got to the CEA Industry Forum, I was standing in the lobby by registration talking on Ashley’s phone (for who Ashley is go to and I hear my phone ring. At first I just assumed it was someone else’s phone but I soon realized it was MY phone. I run up, I demand my phone (my euphoria momentarily blinded by the fact that I had gone to this same registration desk 4 times yesterday when I lost it). I had my phone back. I considered my luck and even contemplated going gambling instead of the CEA forum. Common senses stayed strong and I went to the CEA’s session on energy. It was awesome. I found the panel engaging, informed and highly vested in the topic.

Now, 12 hours later I left “Greening for Business” and I’m deflated, saddened and just completely bummed by the way it ended. Marc Alt  made these points:

1. Consumers have to make a complete cultural shift in the way they value and perceive green consumer electronics’ products. (A point with which I full agree).

2. He stated, ” Consumers demonstrate their eco responsibility through their purchases.” So to translate, when not considering products that directly impact personal environment (food you eat, clothes you wear, the cosmetics you use) consumers buy for eco status or maybe even eco acceptance.

3. Thus, will consumers ever care if the consumer electronics they purchase are green? Consumers care about how much energy the products they buy consume. They care about how easy the devices are to recycle. But, according to Alt, since the consumer can’t point out that a CE device is green because it is in their home (and thus essentially a low traffic area) there may be no added value to a product being green.

This can’t be true. We should care. We should care enough that we as consumers force the point. It’s not just about Energy Star. It is about the carbon footprint. What went into making this product? How much energy? What chemicals? What materials? What labor? What about the packaging? How is this product recycled?

I have dedicated so much time over the past few years to learning about the best green practices for my home, family and my business. I work in the CE industry and I have a vested interest in seeing the greening of CE products. And in my heart l know that being green isn’t about impressing others but about making choices that are smart, sustainable and good for the environment, not just my environment. I don’t expect that it will happen overnight; but it will happen. Over time CE products will evolve and as part of that evolution they will become more green. I just suppose the shade of green can only be determined by consumer demand.

posted by KDL / follow me on Twitter: newscaster


One Response

  1. […] week at the CEA Forum (see this post), there were extensive discussions about green electronics and recycling. Best Buy touted their […]

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