The Conundrum of Green Consciousness

The Conundrum of Green Consciousness

Concern for the environment is hardly a single mind-set. A look through a few of the many environmental magazines quickly reveals its seemingly infinite permutations and combinations.

At one point on the spectrum, we find down-to-earth journals like Garbage, featuring articles on such subjects as mulching and paper recycling. Advertising in Garbage comes from companies producing “environmentally compatible” paints and other household products, composting toilets, and solar electric systems.

At another extreme, we have glossy publica- tions like Earthwatch, apparently bent on doing for environmentalism what Playboy did for a certain vision of sex. Earthwatch is largely given over to publicity for ecotourism sponsored by itself. “Act today … The world is changing quickly,” its appeal runs. “Scientists need your help to assess the condition of the planet.” An 800 number is provided. “For more efficient service,” readers are advised, “have your credit card ready.”