The New Year’s Eve Ball is lit at the top of a 141-footflagpole over Times Square during a test run Thursday, December 30,2010, in New York. The ball was powered by 32,256 Philips Luxeon RebelLEDs.
At 11:59 p.m. on December 31 the New Year’s Eve Ball began descending in Times Square to ring in the new year. This ball,however, was different from those of previous years. It contained 32,256 LED lights.
We’ve explained before how LEDs help the environment. Was this ball a sign of an environmentally friendly year to come? This CAP cross-post identifies are five green trends you can expect to see in 2011:
1. “Eco-superior” products. Going green is becoming more popular, but consumers have more of anincentive to buy “eco-superior” products: products that aren’t justeco-friendly, but also perform better than their nongreen counterparts. According to trendwatching.com, you can expect to see numerous brands start “taking aim right at theheart of traditional alternatives: stressing the superior quality anddesign, increased durability and/or lower running costs of products.”
2. More accurate green claims. Back in October, the Federal Trade Commission proposed revisions to its “Green Guides,” in order to help marketers “avoid makingmisleading environmental claims.” The guides advise marketers to movefrom using blanket, general green claims to more defined statistics tohelp consumers more clearly understand products’ environmental impacts.
3. Luxury vehicles and alternative mobility. We all know about the Chevy Volt and the Nissan Leaf, but we don’t often hear about green luxury vehicles. That will change this year, as Mercedes-Benz and Bentley both plan to offer luxury cars withsmaller engines, and Porsche and BMW advance plans for plug-in hybrids. Car sharing will likely also grow, as auto manufacturers start offering car-sharing programs, in addition to individuals utilizingpeer-to-peer share programs like Spride.
4. Green travel. Delegates at September’s European Ecotourism Conference in Estonia discussed some of the green travel trends they expect for 2011. One is the concept of “voluntourism,” or volunteer tourism, which is expected to be integrated more intogreen travel programs. Zero-carbon hotels are also opening in Europe,and there are plans for green hotels in Asia as well.
5. Green building. Finally, green building consultant Jerry Yudelson predicts an increase in buildings’ use of solar power, and that designers willinstitute more ways to reduce buildings’ water consumption in responseto the global water crisis. He adds that U.S. green building willcontinue to thrive under the Obama administration, as “announcements of a commitment to a minimum of LEED Gold for all new federal projects and major renovations” represent a focus on going green in the executivebranch.
– A CAP cross-post