Are you relying on retailers who are “being green,” or screaming green?
Each time a regional publication distributes its annual “Green Issue,” loaded with “green” business advertising, I am naturally reminded that some retailers still don’t get it. Particularly when it comes to environmental flooring and interior products.
Their advertising messages scream that they are “green” because of such things as selling recyclable nylon carpet, other products from manufacturers who meet their own “environmental stewardship standards,” or they sell cork, bamboo and linoleum.
Much like 10 years ago when the “green” interior product market started getting attention, these businesses still view “green” as a specialty market that is of interest to a small percentage of customers and, therefore, requires occasional advertising but little in-depth knowledge or understanding. This theory ignores market research that shows more consumers are seeking healthful products, in addition to an increase in the U.S. green building market from $10 billion in 2005 to an estimated $85 billion in 2012, with expectations that it will exceed $200 billion by 2016. Continue reading…
Demand will mean more product selection, but can your retailer tell you what standards a product meets?
Even if you are not consciously seeking people- or planet- friendly products, it’s more likely in 2013 that the product you buy will have some environmental advantage — particularly if it’s a building or interior finishing product.
The U.S. green building market has grown from $10 billion in 2005 to an estimated $85 billion in 2012, with expectations that it will exceed $200 billion by 2016, according to a recently published analysis by Environmental Building News.
The top motivators behind this movement? Health-related factors including indoor-air quality, in addition to energy use reduction, according to U.S. and global surveys. Not building a new home? These findings still affect you. Continue reading…
Greater Cincinnati’s Annual Home & Garden show proves “green” products are here to stay, but knowledge of trends and environmental attributes is still playing catch up
But these days, you have to search hard to find exhibiting companies that don’t have some claim to being “green.” Even when I was sure I had found one on opening day, I was wrong.
There is nothing, I was sure, of environmental note about the slot machines on display by Gambler’s Oasis. But then I learned that this business buys machines that are about to be discarded, refurbishes them, and sells them for use in home game rooms. Continue reading…
Studies that show what “fringe,” green proponents warned of all along are an overdue validation of the environmental products industry
I distinctly remember a small group of co-workers who voiced concerns that the windows did not open while everyone else was extolling the beauty of the newly constructed newsroom we worked in, complete with new cubicles, new computers, carpeting, paint, ceiling tiles and everything else that makes up a building’s interior.
LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) had not been created yet. Employees who raised questions about indoor-air quality were “strange,” possibly unbalanced. You could have heard a pin drop when one of them asked what I now know was a very natural question: “Does the ventilation system bring fresh air into our work area?”
Natural or not, the managers responded as though the question bordered on insubordination. Accordingly, it would have been beyond insane had the employee suggested that toxins in the indoor air be scientifically measured or a control group of employees be selected to have blood tests to determine what chemicals they were being exposed to. Continue reading…
Welcome to Natural Interiors® where everybody will understand “green”
It’s natural to want simple answers. It’s not natural when simple answers get complicated. But that is what is happening today as we consider “green” building and decorating products.
It seems that confusion often takes over. We mistake a “green” product label that certifies low chemical emissions for a label that means that the product is made from recycled or renewable materials. A salesperson tells us bamboo flooring is more stable than wood, so we think it’s immune to water damage. Specialty “green” retailers proclaim that their knowledge is superior to mainstream retailers as both sides compete for their share of the U.S. “green” building products market, which is projected to reach $80 billion by 2013. Continue reading…
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