Do We Really Have a Choice?

As I write this first post to LegallyGreen, I am at once awestruck and humbled by the convergence of forces shaping our future.  In recent weeks we have been reminded of the limits of technology in the face of great natural disaster along the northeast coast of Japan, and of the fragility of fossil fuel supplies in the face of social revolution in the Middle East (much of which ironically can be credited to the proliferation of social networking, a phenomenon with distinctly Western roots and grounded in Western ideals).  We are about to mark the first anniversary of the oil spill disaster in the Gulf of Mexico, and the tenth anniversary of the attacks of 9/11.

Yet in the face of these events, we have and continue to march forward. The Enron scandal ushered in an age of “corporate social responsibility” in which companies have been challenged to re-evaluate the core capitalist principles of shareholder value.  The United States Green Building Council (“USGBC”), which was founded barely 18 years ago, recently released the third itieration of its much-touted “LEED” green building standard.  Investments in “clean” and “green” energy sources (yes, there is a difference) continue to grow even in the face of the international community’s inabilty to develop a clear concensus on greenhouse gas reductions.  And lest anyone doubt the money and momentum behind this movement, according to a recent report in SustainableBusiness.com, 2010 saw a 170% increase over 2009 levels in clean tech patent applications.

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