How to Go Green

As a follow-up to the earth2100 post, I wanted to further elaborate on one quote that was mentioned, saying something along the lines of- If 100% of the world took the smallest measures, a lot can be done.  So what can we, as college students with little money and little control of our surroundings do?  We have already tried to recycle those terrible bags from the artstore, or even use our own bags for regular shopping.  Some of us have replaced our desk lamps with flourescent bulbs.  And we always like to see the lights of studio turned off on Friday after a hard week of work. But these two articles give light on other small ways in which we can make slow changes to our surroundings.



Now, although these steps are no permanent solution (Less Bad is not Good), they are a way for us as students to make a minor impact before entering the real world and starting our quest toward a better world.  In whatever type of architure or other feild we may reach in a few years, this is a problem that faces all of us, and I hope that we can all find new and inventive ways to change not only the built environment, but the world as a whole.



2 Responses to “How to Go Green”

  1. 2009/06/04 at 11:42 am

    So to quickly comment on two posts at once:

    There’s plenty to be said on these topics, but I personally don’t feel I know nearly enough to eloquently present my personal views on sustainability, etc. (This is my not so subtle hint for other people to comment!)

    Cradle to Cradle really hit it home for you, apparently. First of all, we need to understand that even by changing “only the built environment,” we are changing the world on a whole. Recognizing this is a big step towards actually making things better. The built environment is a huge percent of this world (debatably too high a number) – think about it; we’ve had our grubby little hands all over the place. If this is “all” we’re trying to change, I’d say that’s a heroic enough attempt.

    I didn’t see Earth 2100, but I’m completely addicted to the History Channel’s Life After People. It’s humbling, as an architecture student, to see well-built structures (and architectural icons) deteriorate and crumble once completely unattended to, slowly (over the fast-forwarded centuries) destroying the idea of architecture as sort of eternalizing it’s architect, and civilization. Also, the graphics are pretty amazing.

    Also, as a side note, regarding your attempt “to make all of [your] school electives environment/history/policy related”: I wouldn’t necessarily commend this effort, valiant though it might seem. Putting aside the fact that you won’t necessarily get those classes (damn waitlists…), you might want to try to reach out in other subjects and attempt to find answers elsewhere. If you’re interested in new solutions, you may or may not find it in direct study of environment and history. Who knows: maybe CS majors will stop global warming. Or maybe musicians.

  2. 2 Danny Burdzy
    2009/06/04 at 12:23 pm

    I agree with you Talia, to some extent. Architects have such a tremendous opportunity to influence the world, and it is true that the built environment is all around us (after all, shelter is one of biggest factors for all living creatures). However, my saying “only the built environment” has several other implications. The first is that I have learned so much about architects or people with architecture degrees in only this fist year. The biggest thing is that not everyone ends up designing buildings, or even working in a firm. And even if they do, interests are so widespread that they could be doing any variety of things. Architects possess the ability to create art. They have the ability to change policies. They have the critical thinking skills to work in almost any field. While architects are surely trained to design and construct buildings, it is not necessarily the end result for everyone.

    Also, changing the world around us is going to take a lot of hard work, not only by us, but by everyone- farmers, factory workers, business people, the government, etc. Although, as I agree with you, we are already putting forth a valiant effort to change the world by sculpting the built environment, it would never hurt to make a few lifestyle changes to help in this effort to change the world. Ultimately, that is what it is going to take. I could rant about all the measures that need to be taken and ideals that need to be omitted or changed (in my opinion), but I’ll save that for another discussion, perhaps.

    And yes, even CS majors and musicians have their opportunity to change things. I mean, programming will need to be done on many projects, most likely, and SOMEONE has to inspire others to contribute, even through music. Look at the impact of AIDS concerts and benefits that have happened in the last decade. But anyway…it is something that has to be experienced by everyone in order to take effect and we finally realize change.

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