The term green technology may conjure images of scientists designing futuristic solar or wind energy equipment. But it is more than that.
Technology derives from the Greek word technologia, meaning the systematic treatment of an art. There are many actions you can systematically take each day which may seem low-tech as compared to a hybrid car, but which will save you time and money while improving the health of the world in which we all live.
In the process, you may create a green innovation to the job you now perform, or build a new opportunity for yourself in this rapidly growing economic sector.
What Is It?
According to Green Technology, a non-profit initiative designed to promote sustainability through private sector-public sector cooperation, the primary goals of green technology are:
Sustainability: providing for our needs without depleting or harming natural resources or impairing our children’s ability to provide for themselves
Renewable Design: engineering products so they can eventually be reclaimed for later use instead of being thrown out-called “cradle to cradle” design
Source Reduction: changing patterns of production and consumption to reduce waste
Innovation: finding alternatives to unhealthful technologies such as fossil fuel or petrochemicals
Viability: capitalizing on products and activities that benefit health and the environment so they are more quickly adopted, create jobs, and products pricing drops due to greater supply.
How Can You Play A Role?
Adopt Green Habits. From the list of green living ideas at our personal website below, pick three that you can, and more importantly that you will adopt immediately as a new routine in your life. Remember that technology requires a systematic approach. Stick with whatever you choose, and add others as you are able.
Make a Difference at Work. This can include starting or improving a recycling program, helping to facilitate more energy efficient building features or energy use, transitioning to purchasing practices supporting environmentally sound products or allowing flexible work-at-home scheduling to reduce building space needs and travel costs.
Become an Expert. Educate yourself through web resources, books and seminars or classes. Find out what others in your field of interest are doing to innovate toward green practices and mimic them. Make a proposal to your boss, your school district, residential community or other body that sets forth a goal and how you would oversee its attainment. After one project, you suddenly have a new resume entry or side business.
Fill a Need While Making Money. Often we ask ourselves why someone doesn’t provide a needed service. With the help of Home Based Business Hub your ideas become strategies and an action plan for operating a green business from home.
Don’t Green Technologies Cost More?
The answer to this depends on how one looks at “cost.” At the dealership, a hybrid Toyota Prius will cost more than a comparably equipped gasoline car. Over its lifetime, however, you will almost certainly recoup the added expense through better fuel efficiency and lower repair rates due to fewer moving parts.
Also consider the hidden environmental cost of the higher polluting gasoline car. Part of our taxes goes to government efforts to clean the air, so it follows that we will pay less if we pollute less.
On the consumer products side, a concentrated chemical household cleaner will likely be a bit cheaper per ounce than a green version. This has to do with economies of scale and who pays for hidden costs.
Until green cleaners get enough viability, or market share, to allow them to be truly mass produced, the mass produced chemical versions will remain cheaper. If you buy the green version, you are inching that company toward being able to offer a lower price to improve its competitive edge.
The hidden cost factor is largely environmental protection costs which the green company chooses to pay, but the chemical company does not yet have to pay.
An example is production waste. A chemical cleaner company can dispose of waste up to the legally allowable air, water or solid waste limits without cost. The green company typically uses green technology to pollute much less, but at a cost which is passed in part to the consumer.