Welcome Greenophobes

Today there is a growing awareness that business-as-usual corporate and lifestyle practices jeopardize the health of the planet and the ability of future generations to sustain a good quality of life. Awareness in turn has created a confusing array of sustainability-oriented decisions. The Greenophobe takes a skeptical, practical, informed look at a variety of sustainability topics. Explore a mix of common sense solutions and in-depth discussions that demystify how to live green and live well.



29 November 2009

Take The Bite Out of Flight: Green Tips for Air Travel


What's greener than a massive jet roaring down the runway fed by 60,000 pounds of thrust from two engines the size of buses whining away at max pitch? Just about everything else imaginable, except for perhaps the space shuttle.

Air travel is a necessary miracle of modern life. It's often essential to making money, to visiting with distant friends and family, and to exploring the treasured destinations across the world that remind us what we're trying to preserve in the first place. The average Greenophobe's criteria for the greening of air travel is, not surprisingly, predictable and practical:

  1. Spend the least
  2. Get there quickly and comfortably
  3. Be practical

Thankfully, the very nature of air travel means there are a ton of natural air travel tips and tricks that accomplish all three greenophobic priorities while seriously greening up your experience. 

Whether you would just like to learn about what's on The Greenophobe's menu for greening up air travel, or you're ready to commit to a more comprehensive strategy to address your current carbon footprint, these quick tips are the foundation for what you need to know about traveling green(er) and traveling well by air:

  • REPLICATE THE FIRST CLASS EXPERIENCE, IN ECONOMY
  • USE YOUR INFLUENCE: PASS GREEN FLIGHT LEGISLATION
  • HEY, CHEAPO: FLY NONSTOP
  • RED-EYE RULES: FLY OFF-PEAK
  • LOSE THE WEIGHT: FLY LIGHT
  • WHO ACTUALLY LIKES TO FLY? CONSIDER "BETTER" ALTERNATIVES
  • EN ROUTE: OPPORTUNITIES TO LEAVE LESS BEHIND
  • OFFSET
Each of these topics is explored in more detail in this article.

22 November 2009

Death to "greenwashing": strategies for debunking green claims


Huh? is right.  Product labeling is known to be a leading cause of the sudden onset of severe greenophobia thanks to no fewer than hundreds of green designations sprayed across all kinds of products and services.

If you've ever exercised good intentions by comparing a few similar products side-by-side, you may have been frustrated by similar terminology that doesn't offer a strong basis for comparison. For example, one product might be marketed by different manufacturers or under different brands as "100% recycled", "100% recyclable", and "Made from recycled materials." If you're loading up a grocery cart with dozens of items, it gets cumbersome and is downright frustrating to stay on-guard for these varying claims because each one requires a time-out to decode and evaluate.   

At the consumer products level, claims can be rampant and regulation is largely voluntary or covered under existing advertising guidelines. Even consumer products that seem innocuous such as small appliances, gadgets, and household goods can bear enormous weight from an envrionmental perspective.  The shear size and global nature of the consumer products market amplifies the claims made on a single product over millions of purchases, making the impact every bit as serious as what you'd expect from big ticket items such as vehicles.

In the free-for-all that is the consumer products market, here are some good places

11 November 2009

Introducing The Greenophobe: your green conscience finally unleashed

The goal of The Greenophobe is to resolve an inherent conflict that exists between the desire to live a green lifestyle and the natural tendency to shy away from things that have a green connotation.  This paradox is much more logical than it sounds and is as old as the green revolution itself.

The abudance of mainstream information and opportunities to "live green" combined with the inherent drive to live well can instill guilt or pride, confusion or clarity in your process of making everday decisions.  How you feel largely depends on your success finding a balance between your nagging green conscience and your own ingrained greenophobia. 

The Greenophobe makes this process a whole lot easier by helping to identify the ways you can make a big environmental impact while maintaining or improving your standard of living.