ANOTHER VIEW Society must embrace the new green
Reducing our dependence on fossil fuels and supporting the smart growth of green technology is at the heart of the solution to most issues we debate in this great nation.
When we talk about gun related issues and problems with violence in our society, the greater issue is social stability coupled with economic growth.
Most people who have quality jobs and something significant to lose, refrain from making horrible and atrocious decisions.
When we talk about joblessness and a subpar employment rate, a primary part of the solution is the reintroduction of manufacturing with an ecological business model. A clean form of manufacturing can help us create new jobs while filling a leadership void in today's business world.
When we discuss the shrinking coffers of our state and local governments, we need to realize our society will have more funds for education, infrastructure and services when the mass majority of people are working in high-quality positions.
A green economy has the potential to employ more people in high-paying jobs while achieving a greater goal for our nation, keeping our rivers, streams, air, land and lives clean.
The obviousness of this idea slaps me in the face like the late New York City Mayor Ed Koch saying, "I can explain this to you; I can't comprehend it for you," when pressed on an issue by political journalist Andrew Kirtzman.
The idea of going green is no longer an issue coming from the fringes of our society where we classify people as "hippies," "tree huggers" and "outcasts."
It is a social movement; a practical business model, tailor made to help us move forward as a unified nation.
We need to think about our energy infrastructure. We need to think about our transportation model. We need to think about embracing our historical role as a leader among leaders when it comes to manufacturing and investment.
We are moving in the right direction here in the Lehigh Valley.
Many businesses and public institutions in the area are promoting energy efficiency, preventing pollution, contributing to the sustainable use of renewable energy, preventing harmful emissions and working to clean up the environment.
There is still much more to be done.
We see fuel prices rising sharply and declining at a very slow pace in a cyclical motion each year.
It is time to invest in alternative energy for transportation. This is not to say every vehicle on the road should run off methane, ethanol, hydrogen or some other alternative fuel source; but isn't it logical to think some should? Doesn't it make sense to have reasonably priced options for those who desire something different? Shouldn't we support the idea of eventually putting an infrastructure in place for the possibility?
Forward thinking green initiatives will need the support of communities, business leaders and political representatives to be successful.
This type of future will require massive investments of time, energy and finances.
Most great endeavors do.
With Presidents Day approaching, it is worth looking at a passage from Theodore Roosevelt's 1910 speech in Osawatomie, Kan. This was also the speech where Roosevelt coined the term "new nationalism" to describe his domestic policy post-presidency.
"Conservation means development as much as it does protection," Roosevelt said. "I recognize the right and duty of this generation to develop and use the natural resources of our land; but I do not recognize the right to waste them, or to rob, by wasteful use, the generations that come after us."
East Penn Press