Will Preserving our Earth Through Mandates Work?

A few new developments in the sustainability world have come to pass since my last note.

A few new developments in the sustainability world have come to pass since my last note.

One week ago, Sens. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) and John Kerry (D-Mass) launched a campaign for their climate bill. The purpose of the “Clean Energy Jobs and American Power Act,” which, incidentally, does not include the word “climate” in its title, is “to create energy jobs, promote energy independence, reduce global warming pollution and transition to a clean energy economy.”

While this proposal incorporates every industry, it is important to point out that green collar jobs are, in fact, on the rise within the building industry. A certain level of green consciousness—which seems to be higher than that of the average Joe—has come to pass within the industry that has long been blamed for the majority of the nation’s carbon emissions.

On another note, Google recently released a PowerMeter, which was created as a free electricity usage monitoring tool for utilities and consumers. As the Frequently Asked Questions site explains, Google built the tool to provide information to consumers.

This idea of monitoring one’s energy usage is certainly not a new one. In a recent MHN post, Dimitris Kapsis, vice president of energy management solutions at American Utility Management, discusses the importance of performing facilities audits in multifamily buildings.

Of course, monitoring energy and water consumption at a multifamily community is much different—and I assume much more difficult—than it would be at a single-family home, but the concept is the same. Everyone needs to play a role in managing their use of the earth’s national resources. The question is, how much of a role should, and can, government play in mandating our use? Have we gotten to the point where we have spread our resources so thin that the only way to resolve the issue is to have our resource use regulated?

What do you think? How much legislation needs to be introduced—and/or passed—for everyone to understand the importance of preserving our earth? Share your thoughts. Email me at Erika.Schnitzer@nielsen.com or leave your comments here.