Monday, April 11, 2016

What a Difference a Difference Can Make

As humans our power to consume resources is growing exponentially as our global population increases.  Because of this it is important to spread awareness about sustainable approaches to industries that are consuming at a faster rate than our environment can replenish these resources.  While we have seen the green-building initiatives gain traction in the last decade, we still have a long way to go.  Lawn care and maintenance might seem like an industry where the sustainability issue is irrelevant, but just because the plants are green does not mean that the methods used to achieve our desired lawn aesthetic do anything at all to conserve or maintain important resources.  The basic economics of lawn care show that while around $45 billion is spent annually in the US to manicure and maintain lawns, about another $100 billion in damage is caused by invasive species.  Additionally, the nurseries that market and sell these aggressive and harmful plants are not liable for any of the damages.

If this seems counter-intuitive it’s because it is and certainly not sustainable.  It seems odd that an industry that generates this much revenue from lawn care also incurs expenses for damage more than twice the maintenance cost.  While certain states like New Hampshire do have legislation regarding invasive species, many do not.  While this could change at some point in the future, for now the government has little say in the matter and therefore it is up to us to spread awareness and do our part.  Check out this website to see what a difference a difference can make and think about adopting some of these habits as your own.

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