Standards Keep House In Order
Green is in the eye of the beholder. That certainly is true in an age when sustainable business practices are clouded by a myriad of environmentally friendly terminology and initiatives intended to add sparkle to the package but not always bringing substance to the contents.
In this issue's Focus section, the Business Journal staff concentrates on presenting an updated picture of the green movement in business and industry in
As is noted in
As Cascade Engineering's Kelley Losey, who is president of the West Michigan Sustainable Business Forum, points out, "Some people might be getting into (green initiatives) for the wrong reasons, but it doesn't really matter what door they come in. They're going to be forced to do the right things eventually." In other words, the verification process will take hold and legitimize a number of efforts before they can be recognized as legitimate contributors to the sustainable business cause.
Green characteristics do not come on the cheap. Significant additional investment is frequently required, but the economies of scale are making such efforts more affordable in the long run. The decision to design the new art museum for a LEED rating was made in 2001, a direct result of a $20 million gift from the Wege Foundation. Peter Wege continues to insist any project receiving Wege Foundation funds be green, using LEED guidelines.
The standards are set, the pretenders are being weeded out. This vital movement is a serious one. And it won't end soon.