I’ve been following with cynical amusement this new green “trend” that’s everywhere, mainly because of the hypocrisy at its center. (Also, I grew up with a father who made me unplug unused electrical devices; this has left me slightly resentful of the Green movement). Take the recent spate of green TV programming – will we still see commercials for gas-guzzling Hummers and canned Cheez Whiz between shows on how to turn our cigarette packs into compost? I very much doubt that green content will interfere with the networks’ thirst to make a buck. So I was tickled this weekend by the ill-thought green incentives on display at Coachella, California’s hippy heaven, where one could dance barefoot in a field all day before sitting in an idling car for three hours to exit the parking lot. The Tour De Coachella bike station (pictured) offered the chance to hop on a stationary bike and trade your blood, sweat, and tears for a quick charge-up on your cell phone. What they failed to mention was that 60,000 people calling to find out where the hell their friends were had already crashed all major phone networks. But best of all was the new water bottle recycling incentive, whereby festival-goers could turn in 10 empties to get one cold refreshing bottle free. What the organizers probably didn’t foresee was that cheap crusties would raid existing recycling bins, tearing them to bits and sending valuable recyclable materials flying everywhere as they dug for that elusive 10th empty. So I’m looking forward to a TV show or festival that stops fannying around with these green guilt-defraying tactics, and admits that the world’s resources are running out and that we are all going to die. Now that would be refreshing.
– Steven Corfe