I realize I run the risk of angering people when I post this, but really, there is gray area here. The world is not yet entirely run on sustainable energy.
Green websites aren't all powered by alternative energy power, the people that write for them are not all living in perfectly sustainable housing or living perfectly green existences. We're all in the process of making important changes, spreading the word, educating and using our passions for the environment to make good things happen.
But no choice is going to be perfect. I mean, I work for a company that sells solar panels and wind turbines and those still get shipped by trucks and boats that negatively impact the environment. Does that mean we stop shipping?
I'm all for being true to what one believes in and I think a site like Celsias can do that while being true to its intentions - even if every decision it makes is not "green" perfect.
At the end of the day, Celsias cannot sustain itself for free and we could all poke holes in every idea. I believe to a certain extent, the end, as long as it is not egregious, does justify the means.
Advertisers are learning that there is a group of people, that is growing every day, who believe that "green" is critical - and those that are greenwashing now will ultimately be forced into compliance as watchdog groups grow.
Maybe, in fact, we should consider building a business model out of being a watch dog - but we can't do that without some solid traffic, which is hard to get via donations and t-shirt sales.
As an internet marketing professional, I know what it takes to get that traffic - and it takes a lot of content, advertising dollars, press releases, a loyal readership and time. Time Celsias may not have without revenue coming in via advertisers, affiliate dollars or other methods.
So do we let a site like Celsias go out of business in the face of perfect green intentions? Or do we find a compromise that can help the voice ring true as we move toward finding a business model that could one day, be entirely green?
Written in November 2008