It seems almost like a requirement of our generation to try and “fix” what we are doing to the earth. In middle school, we were taught about recycling programs and how the little things we did could have massive impacts on our home. As the years have progressed, the emphasis placed on saving our environment seems to be rapidly growing. This sounds great and dandy, but the tactics that teachers, spokespersons, and public figures are using to publicize environmentally conscious practices are often misinterpreted and misunderstood. Popular culture seems to depict nearly all environmentally conscious people as these extremist environmentalists (portrayed as the stereotypical borderline hippy). A very small segment of the population sets out trying to be this type of person. I guess what I am saying is, the way that our generation has been introduced to the idea of environmental consciousness may not be the most effective approach. The general public is smarter than what people give them credit for – they don’t need dumbed down scare tactic approaches. I believe that the public can handle data (as long as it is well presented – the CO2 emissions exhibit at the natural history museum for example). I also believe that should the public be properly informed in the correct manner, dramatic change can be made. It’s interesting to think back to all of times I have been told to “do this” and “do that” in order to “save the planet” – it’s interesting because so many of these actions are menial tasks (such as, using a cup instead of a bottle of water) that are easy to implement, yet so many of them are ignored. The lecture talked about how we have been around for such a small period of time, yet the impact we have had on the earth is enormous — represented by an unfair time/effect ratio. But if our impact has been so big, what do the little things really do? For example, if I personally turn the water off while brushing my teeth, recycle plastics, metals and papers, or even eat more locally grown foods, what impact does that have knowing that others with the same knowledge that I have may be ignoring all of these practices? I guess people follow by example, so if I were to take the time to recycle properly, drive less, walk more, and eat locally, maybe my actions would rub off on someone else, who in turn would do the same things – thus creating a cycle environmentally sensitive people. On the flip side of this, I do understand that for many people, being more environmentally friendly is also more expensive – so again, I’m not exactly sure of the best way. I think if those who can put the effort in do, systems will change making it easier for those who wouldn’t normally be able to, to begin to.