Greenwashing

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” Greenwash (a portmanteau of green and whitewash) is a term that is used to describe the act of misleading consumers regarding the environmental practices of a company or the environmental benefits of a product or service.[1] The term Green sheen has similarly been used to describe organizations which attempt to appear that they are adopting practices beneficial to the environment.[2]  ”  –  Definition from Wikipedia

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There seems to be a lot of Greenwashing going on…  Now that the bandwagon is in the parade, everyone wants to pile on!  While I think there is merit in a lot of the green movement, I want Easterday Construction Co., Inc. to follow a path that takes the best of the “new” practices and implements the ones that make economic as well as socially conscious sense to our company and our clients.  I put “new” in quotes because many of these ideas are not really new.  They have been around since the last green movement in the seventies, if not earlier… they were just not economically viable then.  Some of them have evolved into forms that are more economical.  Some have become economically feasible due to our changing energy costs.   Still others sound good, but the return on investment may never make them  feasible other than as window dressing.  (Ah, that Green Sheen!)

In construction, anything that is trendy or mandated tends to command a premium.  We see this in products that are designed to meet ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) standards.  We see it in spec grade products used in hospitals and clinics.  We’re seeing some of this in green products today.  Take a product that is commonly available, slap a green tag on it and mark it up!  The same item without the green stamp may even still be available at the lesser cost.  Currently there is little or no regulation over what can be called green.

I am currently in the process of working on getting LEED certification through the U.S. Green Building Council.  At some point I expect this will come up as a requirement for bidding on some projects.  I’m looking at this process with a critical eye though.  I intend to watch and learn what are the best in building practices.  My goal with Easterday Construction Co., Inc. is to build better buildings, not just to have a Green Sheen because LEED is the title de jour.

 Kevin

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