It’s almost over — the Democratic National Convention in Denver, my home town.
I’ve been quiet this week about the hubbub because I haven’t wanted to deal with traffic, thousands of people, etc. I would have liked to visit some of the information booths, but I was too slow to get on the green blogging bandwagon. I am incredibly curious what the aftereffects of this “green convention” will be.
- The convention planners have provided a list here of actions they are taking to be extra green. It includes this nod to the long term:
The Pepsi Center is installing a permanent solar array that will be operational before the Convention and long after our nominee has been chosen in Denver.
- The Traveling the Green Way blog also posted a list of green actions, including mention of the compostable dishware. On the other hand, a media blog I read mentioned the media received meals in plastic containers — I wonder if they were plastic or compostable, and if it’s obvious where to dispose of them?
- Much has been made of the wood key cards being used at hotels for the convention. 70,000 key cards will be wood instead of plastic. At least for a few nights. I assume all the hotels will revert to plastic by Friday evening. Forgive me for being doubtful about the ultimate value of this one. Didn’t we once use a sustainable means of hotel entry? I believe it was called the “key.” What ever happened to those?
- If you would like to experience the convention atmosphere vicariously, check out this blog, apparently written by a Denver lawyer who works downtown. The 16th Street Mall is a pedestrian mall that goes through downtown Denver, ending a few blocks away from the Pepsi Center. Free shuttle buses typically carry workers and tourists up and down the downtown area. It’s always a bit of a circus (entertaining, poignant, with lots of junk for sale), but this is a new perspective.
- Speaking of new perspectives, let us consider the anarchists. I appreciate some of this blogger’s points, of which this excerpt will give you a flavor:
Greening the convention … [is] also an opportunity for global polluters to remake themselves as environmental leaders- General Motors will be providing a fleet of hybrid hummers while notorious corporations such as Newmont Mining, Peabody Energy, Archer Daniels-Midland, and Ford get to sponsor a green event.
- Overall, I am curious to see whether we’ll get any photographic evidence of the aftermath of the convention. I hope our media will hold them to a report of whether the convention reached its goal of 85 percent waste reclamation. The sad truth is, huge events like this typically aren’t very sustainable. Even the “green DNC” Web site has a lot of “where possible” disclaimers. I suspect the outcome won’t be too different from Fake Plastic Fish’s recent report on a green festival featuring Radiohead.
I would offer to go down to our downtown city park, Civic Center, and photograph the aftermath, but Denver is hosting the huge “A Taste of Colorado” festival this weekend. Their Web site doesn’t say a word about sustainability.
Have you been to this convention or any other? Heard any good (or dreadful) sustainable news about it?