The Edge - Q3 2010 - (Page 6)

PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE | by Andrew Levinson Tough Questions about Energy Efficiency I THINK IT’S safe to say that we have all spent our last couple of months being the busiest we’ve been in a few years. Although we may have become out of touch with many current events, it is impossible to not continually hear about the tragedy in the Gulf of Mexico. Recently, I read an article in The New York Times that compared the lessons of the BP Gulf of Mexico oil spill to Herman Melville’s masterpiece “Moby Dick.” You may wonder how in the world this comparison is made. Well, both the oil spill and the story of “Moby Dick” relate to man’s insatiable hunger for more and more oil. Obviously, the author was talking about petroleum in our modern day and whale oil in the early 1800s. You all have seen news clips of oil washing up on beautiful beaches in Alabama or poor sea birds drenched in black oil soot. Do I have to remind anyone how tragically “Moby Dick” ended? Both BP’s desire to obtain cheap and abundant oil and Captain Ahab’s similar greed resulted in horrific consequences in the end. Don’t we have to worry about a similar situation in our businesses? As you know, we have seen a huge spike in the number of products that have been introduced into our industry in the last few years. Years before, when customers would ask “What’s new this year?” I would have nothing to say. Lately, the number of new products has been staggering, with many labeled “energy efficient” or “green.” Products to enhance automation are being introduced like never seen before in our business. It is important at this time to reflect on how our new innovations could be impacting our environment. Hopefully, we are introducing new products only after knowing as much as possible about how they affect the total environment. We need to start asking the tough questions about the products we purchase. For instance, when new, or even old products, are introduced into the stream of commerce, do we question where the product came from, what processes were used to produce it, what by-products or waste is created from its manufacture? Many products are sold evoking the fact that they are “green” and “ecofriendly,” but is that necessarily true if we are damaging the earth in order to create them? Like BP, we all have a responsibility to understand what our impact is on the environment and the safety of our customers. We need to look at ourselves in the mirror. There are many things that we in the swimming pool industry do every day that impact our environment. Just like BP and the oil spill, many of these things can affect the environment for generations. Acid washing; backwashing into yards, streets, groundwater and wetlands; and dumping empty plastic containers instead of recycling are just a few things we all have done that can have lasting impacts. Until we all start to run our own businesses in a responsible manner, do we have any right to criticize BP? | Many products are sold evoking the fact that they are “green” and “eco-friendly,” but is that necessarily true if we are damaging the earth in order to create them? Andrew Levinson is president of NESPA, an APSP affiliate, for the 2009-2010 term of office.

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of The Edge - Q3 2010

The Edge - Q3 2010
President’s Message
Wise HR Practices Reduce Risk of Employee Lawsuits
Slip, Trip and Fall Accident Control
Project Focus
Preventive Measures Are Best Defense for Floating Liners
Understanding Social Media
Index of Advertisers/Advertiser Websites

The Edge - Q3 2010