Kicking Off The Greener Gadgets Conference

chris_jordan.jpgWe’re here at the Greener Gadgets conference at the McGraw Hill Center in New York City. Chris Jordan, a professional photographer was on stage first and he showed us his photographs of technological litter, like piles of cellphone chargers, hard drives, and circuit boards. “What I’m trying to do with these photographs is to show the sale of American Mass consumption,” and yet he needs statistics to bolster it in the eyes of those that don’t care so much. “The true scale of our consumption is something that’s invisible.” His images are quite astounding. Each shows different levels of our consumption, in photographs, and it’s almost sickening. We’re seeing images of 1.14 million brown paper bags, the amount we use each hour. 2 million plastic beverage containers–the number we use in the U.S. every fifteen minutes. 106,000 aluminum cans every 30-seconds. The point here is that we need to recycle more and be more aware of our consumption as a whole, and not just as individuals. At least I’m drinking my coffee out of a porcelain mug. Joanna Stern is using a paper one. “I’ve had a really amazing opportunity to be acquainted with the green movement in the last year,” Jordan said. “One of things that I want to share with you about the Green Movement is that there’s a problem with it, there’s a hesitation with it right now, it’s having trouble reaching critical mass. There’s 9 million people that don’t care about this so much.” He’s afraid that it’s slowing down and that people are waiting for others to take action instead of taking action themselves. “This is the time when it has to happen, it can’t wait another generation, it can’t wait another ten years. The Green Movement isn’t ‘cool’ yet,” Jordan argues. “The Green Movement doesn’t have a Michael Jordan,” to make it cool enough–even Al Gore isn’t “cool enough.” “That is where I think the electronics industry comes in, the electronics industry is far in a way the coolest thing going in American culture right now. It’s hard to even think what’s in second place. Man, when the new cellphones come out, they’re like twice as cool (as the previous ones). The electronics industry is like the bow of a ship going into the waves in terms of our consumer culture, everything else is behind the ship. It produces stuff so cool that it’s like Michael Jordan walking out.” “The people of the Green Movement all drive Prius’s and drink water bottles, but we all buy the bitchenist new cell phone when it comes out.” Welcome to the Greener Gadgets Conference, we’ll keep you updated with fresh news throughout the day.

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