I’m finding it surprisingly hard to write a blog while enjoying my prolonged winter vacation in Hawaii. But I do want to pass along a few observations from paradise.
‘Green’ solutions in Hawaii are very real. On the TV, in the newspaper, magazines, yellow pages, and overheard conversations – everything is going green. You see numerous companies competing to install solar energy panels, solar water heaters, solar lighting tubes, wind turbines, and more. At parking lots there are lamp posts with small solar panels and micro wind turbines providing power to the LED lights. Tax incentives are in pace along with state laws mandating power companies crediting your accounts for any power your home solar energy systems or wind turbines feed back into the power grid – a win-win for home owners, power companies, and small businesses. This has been a big change I’ve noticed over the past 5 years. The number of hybrid electric cars on the road is proliferating. Home owners and condo associations are now wresting with having to install electrical outlets for cars in their garages.
I’m sure other states are also moving in a similar direction, but it was heartening to see the very tangible progress being made out here. Unfortunately, I haven’t seen a lot of similar movement in my own home state. We’re still focused on encouraging the use of coal and oil, while also apparently trying to pass bans on the use of wind turbines. Tax incentives and policies encouraging use of home solar energy solutions are negligible.
Becoming energy independent and stopping the flow of dollars out of the U.S. to oil rich countries is still a matter of lip service. I think it will take some form of consumer’s revolution to bring about change in the face of major ‘anti-green’ lobbying efforts.
Is your state or community making major progress in implementing green solutions? Are you seeing tangible progress like I saw out here in Hawaii?