How to Run a Good Environmental Program


After the numerous environmental debacles and not much good coming from some recent programs here in Australia (for more info, Solar Panel Risks and Roof Insulation Deaths. I have decided to break my rules and get on my soap box here. We are pretty positive that these theories will apply in most places around the globe. First I need to educate some of the bureaucrats and ministers that exist around the world in some basic business.

Business Profits = (Gross Sales Price) – (Cost of Sales). This may seem obvious to most of us but it seems to be lost to many people we vote for. So how does this tie into environmental programs. Well the businesses installing the green solution and the installer both follow this simple equation to put food on the table for themselves and their employees. Below is a generalization so my apologies to those and some of my personal friends that are doing the right thing. So this means installers will buy readily available materials and sometimes the cheapest. The company or household purchasing the item will also shop for what they deem the most cost effective. We must make the latest most efficient technologies green and affordable.
So let’s get to the meat of what we can do to fix the problems, while creating a better planet and economy.

1. We all know that a snowball does not stand much of a chance in an oven. So let’s stop spending so much money on proving it will melt and work on cooling the oven.

2. Pure research labs come up with concepts that may or may not work they need to engage with engineers and manufacturers to get the product to market. Make funding dependent on that process.

3. Assist manufacturing companies to turn their processing green and to deploy the latest environmental solutions. Fines imposed for not hitting targets are passed onto consumers and the largest companies get the best advantage by being able to hide a smaller amount in more units, even though they maybe the biggest polluters.

4. Publish several key factors; the amount of known environmental pollutants created in the manufacturing process. The amount of pollutants saved per year over conventional products. Letting the public making informed decisions.

5. Have strict standards that ensure only the most efficient products both in their manufacturing process and ongoing savings are eligible for the incentives or rebates.

6. During this whole process the world will need to train and educate everyone from the manufacturers to the installers and consumers on the best use of these products. Include in the incentives guidelines for training and requirements to make sure this process is safe and the most effective.

7. Fund central inspectors and trainers to ensure standards are met and best practices learned and redeployed through the industry. This funding must be included in the original budget for at least the length of the project to ensure compliance and the best outcomes for everyone.

8. Consumer rebates should be consumer rebates, consumers having that control will assist he government with some control. If the consumer isn’t happy they call the government inspector, if he isn’t happy the installer will have to rectify the issue before he gets the rebate amount.

9. Constant reviews of new technologies being deployed with all advisers required to declare publicly any conflicts of interest. Yes, I know, now I have crossed the line. But skeptics are a good part of any scientific process, we need independent scientific reviews and not just hidden associations that are blown out of proportion.

10. Embrace those willing to be the guinea pigs with the new products and allow current regulations to have leeway, understanding that many of the regulations existed before we knew what a solar panel was.

There are lots of things that are not in the above list but it covers the principles of what we are all trying to achieve.

OK, stepping down from the soap box now. This will be the last time, well probably not. Maybe there is an off chance that someone who is a bit smarter with a bit more influence then me may take up this fight.

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