Most of the time when people talk about energy efficiency and sustainable building, they are talking about the environment, and how to help it. This discussion about environmentalism comes up so often that it’s very easy to forget exactly what the motivation is for all this, and it’s easy to write off environmentalism as a fad, or the latest obsession of the government that has nothing to do with you or your family.
But that’s just not true. Sustainable building isn’t a government mandate or fashionable news topic. It’s something that affects you, and more importantly, the future of your children.
Think Long Term
Green builders are thinking of the future and the way families—like the ones your children will someday have—will have to live in it. With the past rates of resource consumption for materials like wood and metal, it was clear that humans, as a species, were taking far more away from the planet than we were giving back, and this was having an impact on the environment that future generations would have to deal with. The industrialism of the 20th century has already created a world in which El Niño wreaks havoc with weather, and this is something our parents and grandparents have left us to clean up.
What will we leave for our children to clean up? Do we have the right to create a mess that future generations must take on?
In the same way that it took many individuals working in many factories, burning many fossil fuels and cutting down many trees to have an impact on the planet over decades, it will take the same amount of time and effort from many individuals to reverse that course.
A green home is one way to make that contribution. And if you do it, and your neighbor does it, and your children do it, and their children do it, then we will stop only taking from the world we live in. And we still start to give back to it. And in doing so, we will be giving our children and their children an important gift; a future with hope.