“Green” is a loaded word

Designers are giving the word green a whole new meaning, and that’s not necessarily a good thing. After our readings and discussions in class I just felt the strong urge to go out and save the world! This epiphany if you will was spurred by watching, the video “The 11th Hour” this week which basically talks about how, we, as a human race, are single handedly destroying our planet. It comes with excitement that I feel the strong urge to “be the change” in todays design field. As a society today we are only looking at the small picture and not looking at what the effects of our actions have on not only the environment but our own lives and health as a society. The idea of “global warming” is not just an idea but a fact and if we don’t make a change I’m not sure how much longer we can wait. With air pollution, pesticides, plastics and health related illnesses such as autism, ADHD, diabetes, cancers we have to realize that there is a link between the two. In class on Thursday we also discussed how important it is to be aware of changes. Designers are who can make a difference in the world and I am not just saying that to be corny. It’s true! Designers are going to be those who know the substitutes for unhealthy products and know how our industry works so that we can change it. Government will need to put stricter laws on products, but ultimately we are the ones specifying those products. We need to be aware of how products are made and the amount of chemicals we are using.

In our readings this week of Easter Island and Environmentally Healthy Interior Design what stood out to me most was just the concept of yes there are a lot of bad things we do as designers but also our job now is just to re-invent, re-design and create new ways of thinking about sustainability. The society of Easter Island had a narrow-minded approach to everything they seemed to be working for. They did not work together, they were only focused on their own tribes and they ultimately destroyed themselves because of it. In our group in class we talked about how they would have been able to survive if they knew how to manage their resources better they would have been able to sustain themselves longer on the island. Which is a lesson that Americans need to take to heart, we are a consumer society and always feel the need to constantly be buying the newest and greatest thing. I know I am guilty of it! But we just need to change the way in which we live our day to day and be stewards of both our time and money. If we as a society put half as much effort into just thinking about the world we live in as we do out shopping I think the planet would thank us for it. This can also me seen in the readings from Healthy Interior Design, we want to create spaces people want to be and spaces that not only complement the environment but maybe even help benefit it. Overall this week I have learned a lot just from becoming an informed individual on the matter and now I can help successfully inform others in the hopes for a better future.

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