19 May 2017
I keep asking myself this question. As members of the New Zealand Green Building Council we try to push this issue within our design philosophy. But to be honest its been a tough couple of weeks on the subject and I am beginning to ask the hard questions. Does it bring value to my clients? Does it bring value to the business? Or is it for me to take on my share of the global responsibility to save our planet from global warming and ecological destruction. Or simply am I doing it just to just make myself feel good? Can my clients afford it or can they afford not to do it? Or is it simply just a lot of hot air (excuse the pun..). All big questions but all relevant today with the bombardment in the media of global warming and the destruction of our planets resources and its impeding doom.
In my day to day life I do have a desire to be a good global citizen that contributes to our global society. I know I can do my little bit as an interior designer/specifier by asking our suppliers of finishes, furniture, products etc if they are not from a rain forest or carbon neutral or not made in a sweatshop that produces damaging byproducts. Then in good faith I just have to believe what they tell me and run with it. So for assistance we turn to a national organisation to...well I would say help us to design and specify a commercial interior space that would be 'green' that we can shout about. We have a client who is keen on the idea and we looked for some guidelines. We went to the organisation that is there to help us on going through the process of getting a green star rated interior but when they told me the cost to go through the rating scheme I literally fall of my carbon neutral chair. Thats when i began to ask myself what was the point.
Why do I feel like barriers are put up? How can wanting to do the right thing and tell people about it cost so much just for the rating? Isn't the idea to be efficient and smart in choosing energy efficient products along with renewable or recycled products and getting the assistance to do that? To make it easy and cost effective? Rather than creating a system that seems be a bureaucratic nightmare? So whats the answer?
Well I am beginning to come to the conclusion that it is all about going to the core of what I am wanting to do. That is to take my individual responsibility to follow the path I am passionate about. So I have made the decision to get our own green and energy efficient library in house back up and running. Make smart choices for our clients and collaborate with our suppliers. Explain to our clients their choices in this arena and not worry about having to get the rubber stamp for the world to see on the front door. I'm a firm believer the word will get out simply because we are passionate in what we do and believe in what we do.
If your passionate about something and believe in it you will find the path that best suits you to achieve your goal. So it is worth pursuing and getting the results that you can do the best of your abilities at the time. So for me its worth it.