How Green Is Our Recession?

hand turning down a thermostat photo

A cost-saving measure with an environmental benefit.

From turning down office thermostats to reducing travel to reusing clothes hangers, Turkish companies have been taking all kinds of eco-friendly measures lately. Their goal is not to save the environment, but their employees' jobs.
Green steps
In the "hopes of averting layoffs," Hürriyet Daily News reports, the clothing company Silk & Cashmere has reduced the size of its summer catalog, encouraged employees to print only when necessary, and is working on a plan to limit vehicle use. Another apparel manufacturer, Koton, has taken the no-brainer step of reusing hangers that used to be thrown away.

Transportation company Aras Cargo has installed motion-sensor lights at some of its facilities, while shoemaker İnci has turned down the heat at its production and administration offices, combined transportation services, and, in a step likely to have caused some grumbling, restricted elevator use in its headquarters to sick or pregnant employees. (No explanation was given as to why sick employees are coming to work in the first place, but, unfortunately, that is what people tend to do when they're worried about keeping their jobs.)

Pluses and minuses
Of course, not all the moves are positive for the planet--replacing wood hangers and cardboard packaging with plastic seems like a step backward--but it's interesting to see how many areas of convergence there are between saving and being green.

Helping the housing market?
Another potentially surprising connection between the economic crisis and the environment, noted previously on TreeHugger, is the way greener homes have been a bright spot in the bleak housing market. In Istanbul, where rents are softening and housing sales slowing even in the trendy neighborhoods, buyers seem to be keen on properties near mass transit, at least in the case of the Marmaray rail tube, construction of which will reduce commute times, and, presumably, costs, significantly. Via: Layoff alternatives," Hürriyet Daily News
More about the economic crisis and the environment:
Library Use is Booming Because of Recession
Food Foraging Lessons for the Recession
Green IT Safe From Recession
No Recession for Bicycle Makers
Will Green Design Retailers Survive the Recession?
Get Recession Ready: 11 Lifestyle Choices as a Hedge Against Inflation
Frugal Green Living: Seven Tips to get Recession Ready
No Recession for Wind Power Industry
Always Look on the Bright Side of Life Dept.: 10 Ways the Recession Can Help the Environment
Counter-Point: 4 Reasons Why Recession is BAD for the Environment

Related Content on