Environmentalism has had its highs and lows throughout history. Looking back to 1970, the year of the first Earth Day and the founding of the EPA, it marked the start of the green movement. But in a nation riveted by economic crisis, saving THE environment came after individuals saving THEIR environment. Hence the past four decades have been riddled with peaks like Carter placing solar panels on the White House, to valleys such as Reagan ripping them off and selling them to the highest bidder of Presidential memorabilia. T0 more peaks like in 1989, when, following the elder Bush’s election Time magazine named the Earth “Planet of the Year” to just five quick years later in 1994 when Gingrich’s “Contract With America” swept in a Congress out to curb environmental regulations.
And here we are in this moment, when for the past 12 months, Green has been the new Black, except our economy is in the Red and everyone is concerned about having enough food to eat verses whether it is organic. And at the same time as retailers stocked their shelves with the largest inventories of green goods for a holiday retail season, consumer sales are at record lows.
But green wasn’t about marketing this time, it was about recognition and a call for global change. It was focus on renewable energy to free us from our dependence on foreign oil and give control back to the American people. President-elect Barack Obama is promising a solid focus on environmental stewardship, but will this mounting economic crisis limit his efforts on the greening of America? Will he look to the environment as a viable solution for job creation, industry growth, infrastructure investment and resource management?
Time will soon tell if this was just another green bubble or if green can change the way we do business globally. Looking to green to get us out of the red, coudl be the permanent solution we are all looking for.
KDL | follow me on Twitter: newscaster