September 11, 2000—New
Shades of Green
We have previously mentioned to you that company after
company, institution after institution, are rebranding themselves to show
they are alive and kicking in this New Millennium.
Just this week Investor's Business Daily headlined the facelift of
Compaq--"Compaq Treats Itself to Makeover in Effort to Drop PC Kingpin
Image," September 6, 2000. Compaq wants us to understand that it sells lots
of servers, data storage systems, and Internet appliances and services.
What's interesting about this wave of repotting, however, is that the smart
and agile companies are putting a lot more environmental green in their new
look. BP radiates environmental consciousness, even admitting that we will
have to change our energy ways going forward. Stonybrook Farms uses
celebrities in its yoghurt advertising and then gives money to their chosen
Sundry hotels around the country ask us to forego soap, linen changes, and
even excessive lighting in the name of environmentalism. Naturally, Ralph
Nader has recast his attack on Corporate America under the Green Party
We don't pretend to know all the reasons why the environment has moved into
the front lobes of the national consciousness. But the advocates for the
environment are surely getting smarter, more eloquent, and just plain
rational. Take Eileen Claussen, at the Pew Center (www.pewclimate.org),
who has rounded up 20-plus major corporations which share her concerns and
which are pushing incremental initiatives that will slowly make a
difference. Or Ms. Heather Ward of
has been on the stump for whales since she was knee-high to a grasshopper
(and whose site we feature this week in Other Global Sites.) Folks like
this know how to be irresistible.
We expect to see a continuous stream of green inventions gushing forth from
all parts of our society. And we suspect more and more movements will be
dressing up their theologies in green language. Hopefully all this will even
creep into the lexicon of all the Internet people, whose vocabulary is
pretty sterile even if it has a violent cast to it (e.g. "hits").
With polar ice caps melting and monarch butterflies disappearing, there will
be a lot of green matters to talk about. Clearly we need to accelerate our
transition to new ways of doing things (virtual work at home,
micro-generation of electricity, biotech conversion of wastes, massive
reforestation) to put us at peace with our surroundings.
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