Red-eyed tree frog, Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica. Photo: Tribefly.com
It’s Earth Day, and you’re likely to hear the word “green” a gazillion times before April 22 is over. It’s easy to get calloused to the notion of “going green.” Is there such a thing as “green fatigue”? I suppose the cynically inclined might say so.
But for the nature lover, green is a defining element of life. We find green in liberal quantities in nature, a visual balm for urban-weary and tech-tired spirits. To be green — to live green, to have green consciousness — is to sustain the green world that nurtures and sustains the very essence of who we are.
Nature gives us green in so many amazing places. Look at these:
At Natural Habitat Adventures, being green isn’t just “greenwashing.” Nat Hab has been a global ecotourism leader in walking our environmental talk. When Ben Bressler started the company as a one-man endeavor more than 25 years ago, it was born of the environmental imperative to help the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) create an ecotourism industry to provide an alternative economy to the infamous harp seal hunt in the Magdalen Islands off Eastern Canada.
Now, Nat Hab is respected worldwide for its leadership in making adventure travel ecologically sustainable. Integral to the company’s mission is the understanding that a complete travel experience includes protecting and preserving our natural assets and the wildlife that live in these remarkable places. Because of NHA’s dedication to this philosophy, World Wildlife Fund has selected Nat Hab as its official Conservation Travel Provider, offering travel opportunities in conjunction with WWF. Conde Nast Traveler has honored NHA as its highest-rated Green List Tour Operator inductee, an award that rates us on our environmental policies as well as guest satisfaction.
What are some of the things we do to earn such recognition? In 2007, Nat Hab made all of its trips and office operations completely carbon-neutral through the purchase of offsets, creating the world’s first 100% carbon-neutral travel company. The office is powered by alternative energy, recycling is mandatory and employees are offered incentives for volunteerism and using alternative transportation. Our catalog is printed on 100% recycled paper. For our travelers, we provide stainless steel water bottles that can be re-used, rather than throwaway plastic. Those are just a few of the steps we are taking to keep the world we live in green, and we’re exploring new actions all the time.
Gordon Gekko of Wall Street infamy claimed “Greed is good.” I’d like to suggest that “green is good,” for the rest of the world’s geckos and other Earth dwellers.
Here’s to a glorious, green Earth Day,