I began posting here because I saw an opportunity. A chance to cut through the complexity and confusion surrounding sustainability. To weed out the hype. To show how interconnected the issues, and the answers, can be. And to bring eConsciousness to more people in personal and relevant ways.
Sounds like a viable premise, doesn't it? Nonetheless, to make sure I'm not suffering from any illusions I figured the one month mark was a good time for a sanity check. And guess what? Along comes a large-scale consumer survey that seems to back me up on a number of points. Coincidental or not, this is powerful stuff that needs to be heeded.
Thanks to Joel Makower, noted mover and shaker in the sustainability and green business arena, for alerting me to this. In a recent entry on his blog Joel ponders Why Americans Don't Go Green, and gives us some advance research findings from a survey conducted by ecoAmerica, a non-profit focused on consumer marketing.
Here are a couple of the survey's high points (Gleaned from Joel's writing. The full survey should be released on ecoAmerica's website sometime in December '06):
1. There is no common agreement on what environmental concern means or what to do about it. The issues are too many, too diverse for agreement. My takeaway is that we need to find ways to tap individual motivations and meaningfulness. This energy can be harnessed in a new kind of consensus for planetary health that allows for a multiplicity of views and contributions.
2. Environmental complexity is paralyzing. The ways that an event can trigger a chain reaction, and upset any number of intricately balanced natural systems, are difficult to grasp. Joel points out the need to "show how problems can be addressed through simple, incremental changes in behavior," and I agree. The sheer volume of expertise that showers down on us day in and day out can be paralzying, to say the least. Moreover, things like good old scientific debate actually fuel the skeptics, who exploit the way our understanding is advanced for their own naysaying agendas. The answer, once again, lies in enabling a new kind of communication with the individual.
There's more on Joel's blog, and plenty more to come when the full study is released, I'm sure. Keep an eye out for it.
Meanwhile, I'm going to take all this to the bank, and redouble my efforts to make this blog a place where connections can be made and eConsciousness can truly be sparked and nourished. And, by the way, the lines are open (just click on 'comments' below and go for it) for you to kick in as well. I think we'd all like to hear from you.