The Six Principles of Green Living
May 08, 2008
Living by “green” principles can be extremely satisfying, but how do you do it? Surely, it’s not by purchasing more “green” products, because buying and using more “things” is all part of the problem.
This Lifehack article has got a great point, though, that a better guide to Green Living might well be David Allen’s Getting Things Done, since the principles of Green Living are not all that different from the principles used to be more productive.
1. Strive for Simplicity: More stuff means more complexity; more upkeep, more keeping track, more things to do. In global terms, it means more wasted resources.
2. Fairness: Much of our consumption-driven market is based on unfairness. If everyone along the chain, from a Bolivian granny making hand-woven grocery bags to the Wal-Mart worker, actually were paid what you’d expect, that hand-woven grocery bag would be out of most people’s price range.
3. Community: If you’ve ever had the pleasure of attending a local farmer’s market, you’ve experienced something few of us do these days: an encounter with a part of your community, an actual living and breathing person, who made that which you’re about to buy.
4. Sustainability: A system is sustainable when the negative outputs of that system are accommodated and turned into positive outputs. However, most of our global production is not sustainable.
5. Planning: Planning means looking ahead toward a desired outcome. It also means thinking a little bit about the community that isn’t here yet and dealing fairly with them. The decisions we make now will create the conditions our grandchildren and their grandchildren will have to deal with.
6. Transparency: Planning, community, fairness, and ultimately sustainability require transparency, but most decisions these days are made behind closed doors.
To take Green Living a bit closer to home, I also encourage you to look into the principles of Bau-Biologie. Bau-Biologie is the holistic study of the man-made environment, human health and ecology, and you can use many of their principles to create a healthier indoor environment for yourself and your family.