It’s exciting to see everybody and their mother in the entertainment industry jumping on the green bandwagon. Probably because of Earth Day–which looks to be much, much bigger this year than in years past–tons of women’s magazines are rolling out special green editions: Vanity Fair, Women’s Health, Glamour, Martha Stewart’s Body and Soul, etc. BTW, Leonardo DiCaprio is a busy, busy boy.
And now it looks like TV is jumping in hard, too. Following up on the “success” (I’d love to know what this means… personally, I found the show a depressing caricature of environmentalists as “cooky” and fringe) of Living with Ed, HGTV is launching another green show:
“Red, Hot and Green,” a new green design series, will premiere Sunday, June 10 at 9 pm ET/PT. Starring craftsman and green enthusiast Carter Oosterhouse and Eco-stylist Danny Seo, and hosted by Steven Lee, the show will “demonstrate that today’s environmentally-focused designs can be fresh, stylish, and accessible,” according to HGTV promotion material.
Based on the popular HGTV Dream Home program, the 2008 HGTV Green Home Giveaway will award one lucky viewer a custom-built, fully-furnished, home—constructed using eco-friendly materials, energy-saving appliances, and natural textiles.
Far more exciting, Discover Communications is launching an entire network:
“The goal of Discovery PlanetGreen is to use Discovery’s worldwide credibility to be the most comprehensive and trusted global resource for celebrating, preserving and protecting the planet.”
In addition to a new network, the global initiative also includes a $50 million investment in new original content (with the first new special series called Ten Ways to Save the Planet) and a robust multi-platform offering with interactive tools and comprehensive “how-to” resources. Other aspects of the initiative include plans to secure the LEED Silver certification and to make its global headquarters a carbon-neutral building, and to work with a broad coalition of well established partners, such as The Nature Conservancy, us at TreeHugger and Grist, to produce relevant and entertaining programming, provide timely, reputable information, and inspire individuals to make a difference.
Not to be a pessimist, but I can’t help but wonder if we’ll see the results of over-saturation in a year or two. Being green is hip, super hip, right now. But will that lead to a transformation in core American values or will it wind up just being a fad? And if it’s the latter, will it make it harder for fundamental changes to be supported or is this all a plus–raising the bar of education and concern?