Green is almost undeniably one of the most marketed colors as it relates to the environment, sustainability, and energy. But what exactly does “green” mean in relation to environmental and energy issues?

More importantly, can a modern product or process really be considered green, and if so, by what benchmark? For example, we know that CFLs use less energy than incandescent lights, but does consuming less energy really make a product greener?

To begin, the word green has ascended to a level much greater than simply a word describing a color, but a term that can imply a variety of definitions, standards, and phrases that are rooted in efficiency, conservation, environmental impact, etc. So let’s break “green” down for a moment. Green can imply any (but not limited to) of the following: High efficiency, conservation, organic, non-toxic, sustainable, renewable, recycled content, recyclable, bio-degradable, natural…

Green is such a multi-faceted word that creating a simple definition would pose no simple task due to the sheer number of situations and contexts the word can have application in. However, English is no stranger to words that have different connotations and that are context specific. You could say, “The wind blew over our trampoline.” or “You need to wind the clock daily for it to operate”. You’re using the same word, but the context changes greatly depending on how you use it.

Right now, I’m wearing a shirt with patches of green, but I don’t see any indication that this shirt is somehow more environmentally friendly than any other typical article of clothing. Alternatively, I could say that I’m wearing a green shirt…because it’s made from organic cotton in a facility powered by
solar energy and was delivered to the department store by a truck that runs on biofuel created using the waste grease of local restaurants.So, green can have a variety of definitions based on how the term fits into a given context.

Getting back to our original questions, we’ll need to explore some current products and ideas that are considered green so we can see just how environmentally conscious they really are,
or are not. To be continued at … www.hickoryenergy.tumblr.com

Views: 48

Tags: efficiency, green

Comment

You need to be a member of Home Energy Pros Forum to add comments!

Join Home Energy Pros Forum

Comment by Nathan Christensen on December 3, 2010 at 9:35am
Hello Elisa, thank you for the comment.

Hybrid power plants, such as the one you write about in your article (assuming I'm connecting the dots correctly) are certainly "more green" than their counterparts. However, as the article states, a lot of what could make the hybrid power plants more environmentally sound is how the materials are applied in a given situation. Using hybrid power plants to extend the life of an aging coal fired power plant would be similar to converting an old gas guzzling vehicle to a plug-in hybrid, just for example. Its a tricky situation. Personally, I'd rather see newer technologies, such as the molten salt solar thermal method, applied to newer more efficient power plants to further increase efficiency, while older less efficient plants are shut down. But, it is difficult to justify shutting down a functional power plant, you just have to take what you can get.

Its not a "best case" situation, but certainly a step in the right direction.
Comment by Elisa Wood on December 3, 2010 at 5:27am
Very good point. The word "green" is certainly used loosely these days. Are, for example, hybrid power plants green? http://www.renewableenergyworld.com/rea/news/article/2010/10/mixnma...

Forum Discussions

Efficiency of furnace

Started by Jignesh in General Forum. Last reply by Barbara Smith yesterday. 7 Replies

Best brands for furnace

Started by Jignesh in General Forum. Last reply by Barbara Smith yesterday. 1 Reply

Insulation Blower Recommendations?

Started by Jim Conlon in General Forum. Last reply by Cameron Home Insulation yesterday. 2 Replies

2005 EPAct tax credit

Started by Mandy Leazenby in General Forum. Last reply by Sean Lintow Sr on Thursday. 3 Replies

Latest Activity

Sara Watson posted a blog post

6 Tips to Pick Out The Best Solar Outdoor Lights

You have a beautiful home in Florida and plan to add a little sparkle to your front garden, patio,…See More
6 hours ago
DesignTech liked DesignTech's photo
8 hours ago
Anthony Roy is now a member of Home Energy Pros Forum
18 hours ago
Barbara Smith commented on Barbara Smith's video
23 hours ago
Barbara Smith replied to Jignesh's discussion Efficiency of furnace
"Installation and proper sizing is important to getting the best performance out of your furnace.…"
yesterday
Barbara Smith replied to Jignesh's discussion Best brands for furnace
"Check ENERGY STAR and Consumer Reports.…"
yesterday
Barbara Smith replied to Diane Chojnowski's discussion Support Mike Rogers, a long-time home performance hero, as he battles sinus cancer. in the group News & Announcements
yesterday
Barbara Smith joined Diane Chojnowski's group
Thumbnail

News & Announcements

Share your news and announcements with the community in this group.To post news or an announcement,…See More
yesterday
Diane Chojnowski added a discussion to the group News & Announcements
Thumbnail

Support Mike Rogers, a long-time home performance hero, as he battles sinus cancer.

Support Mike Rogers, a long-time home performance hero, as he battles sinus cancer. Write a note, a…See More
yesterday
Eric Kjelshus replied to Jignesh's discussion Efficiency of furnace
"I like looking at system efficiency - Lets say the you have a 95% gas using furnace 100,000…"
yesterday
Cameron Home Insulation replied to Jim Conlon's discussion Insulation Blower Recommendations?
"Hi, Rent a Cellulose Insulation Blower from your local Home Depot. Get more information about…"
yesterday
Todd Abercrombie liked Barbara Smith's video
Saturday
Jim Hensen replied to Jignesh's discussion Efficiency of furnace
"Great question - what the efficiency rating means is one of the most common questions we we asked.…"
Saturday
Michael Schettine's blog post was featured

Framing production combined with air sealing

Building Tighter Homes with Gasketed FramingIf you follow our blog, you know that we talk quite a…See More
Friday
Profile IconMichael E and Jason Dion joined Home Energy Pros Forum
Friday
Jason Dion joined Sean Lintow Sr's group
Thumbnail

Best Practices (Residential)

Best Building, Retrofitting, or even Auditing Practices - what are they, what should change, what…See More
Friday
Jason Dion joined Michael Stuart's group
Thumbnail

INFRARED THERMOGRAPHY USERS

This group is dedicated to knowledge sharing and discussion of infrared thermography for building…See More
Friday
Jason Dion joined allen p tanner's group
Thumbnail

Energy Auditing Equipment for Sale, Trade or to Purchase

Discuss the pros and cons of the equipment you are interested in prior to purchase. Post equipment…See More
Friday
Jason Dion joined Allison A. Bailes III's group
Thumbnail

HVAC

HVAC design, Manuals J, S, T, & D, Duct leakage, Air flow, ENERGY STAR new home requirements,…See More
Friday
Jason Dion joined Bob Krell's group
Thumbnail

Healthy Indoors (IAQ)

The Healthy Indoors group is focused on indoor air quality (IAQ), mold, moisture control, radon,…See More
Friday

Photos

  • Add Photos
  • View All

© 2018   Created by Home Performance Coalition (HPC)   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service