Book Review: The Green Collar Economy: How One Solution Can Fix Our Two Biggest Problems

Lately there has been a lot of hype about what it means to be “green” and to “live sustainably”. The green message is omnipresent: celebrities are touting their electric cars, models are strutting down the catwalk in organic clothing, Ed Begley Jr. and Bill Nye are competing on a reality television show to see whose house can be more eco¬friendly. But one has to wonder how much of the green message is encouraging actual changes in energy savings in American households, and at what pace? There is a message, yes, but is there action? And to whom are we sending the message?

One of the organizations that is soaring into the green activism forefront is Green For All, which “advocat[es] for local, state and federal commitment to job creation, job training, and entrepreneurial opportunities in the emerging green economy – especially for people from disadvantaged communities”. Green for All focuses its message on those who might not walk the red carpet at the Oscars, but rather those who are striving to survive paycheck to paycheck. As such, the Green for All intent is to bring awareness to green collar jobs and their potentially critical role in the future of the American economy and global environment. Van Jones, founder of Green for All, has been urging the organization’s message through his book, The Green Collar Economy: How One Solution Can Fix Our Two Biggest Problems.

In The Green Collar Economy, Jones stresses the importance of recognizing America’s two biggest hurdles to tackling the climate crisis which are radical socioeconomic inequality and rampant environmental destruction. Jones recommends a more inclusive message when teaching Americans sustainable practices since it is evident from examples like Hurricane Katrina that the poor are the first to suffer in an environmental catastrophe. Likewise, it is these same individuals that could prosper most by switching from blue-collar jobs to green-collar jobs due to the inevitable demand for workers in the production of clean energy mechanisms.

The tone of The Green Collar Economy is that of urgency. Jones cites past environmental movements that occurred at crucial times such as John Muir’s fight for the preservation of national parks and Rachel Carson’s conservationist movement. While these movements spurred significant advances in litigating the protection of environmental resources, the movements focused more on the environmental problems than on the resulting plight of the lower socioeconomic classes. The inclusion of individuals of all races in the future environmental movement needs to happen now, or else the already dire condition of the world’s environment will take an even more haphazard downward spiral.

More than anything, reading The Green Collar Economy will inspire one to get involved and active in this next wave of environmentalism. Jones encourages wholehearted inclusion over myopic exclusion, sincere activism over aloof passivity, and diligence in seeing through the prospect of what green jobs can offer the American economy.

**For those interested in tackling climate change by way of the Green for All message, see http://www.greenforall.org/, and http://www.greencollareconomy.com/.**

Views: 87

Comment

You need to be a member of Land8 to add comments!

Join Land8

Comment by sizzelman on May 28, 2009 at 1:06pm
Dude I love Ed Begley :{)

New Jobs!

Members

Forum

Site Measuring Revisited Again

I've put up a couple of discussions in the past regarding tools and methods for site measuring to supplement a survey or for a small project. Back in November I saw the video below and decided to buy the Disto S910 because of its ability to export a…Continue

Started by Andrew Garulay, RLA in STORY BOARD on Sunday.

Editorial: Eligibility requirements for State Landscape Architect Licenses 31 Replies

June 28, 2015Dear Land8 Members:ANY LAND8 member should feel free to add their own comments here.EDITORIAL:  It's my opinion......that EVERY student who earns a Landscape Architecture Degree. (4 yr., 5 yr. or Masters in Landscape Architectures)…Continue

Started by J. Robert Wainner in STORY BOARD. Last reply by J. Robert Wainner on Thursday.

Project Manager Training? 4 Replies

I was wondering if anybody out there had a formal or informal PM "break in" or training program. The PM programs that I've looked into don't really apply to landscape architecture. There's got to be something for architecture or another allied field…Continue

Started by Colter Sonneville in PROFESSIONAL PRACTICE. Last reply by J. Robert Wainner Jan 11.

Good news

Check out this website for potential post graduate degree scholarships…Continue

Started by Keith A. French in STORY BOARD Jan 11.

© 2017   Created by Andrew Spiering.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service