Garblog's Pages

Saturday, April 21, 2012

How Earth Day changed the way we speak | Coeur d'Alene Press

Here's a timely article for Earth Day--Sunday, April 22. It begins:
Since the first Earth Day was celebrated as an "environmental teach-in" on April 22, 1970, a whole new vocabulary has entered the English language.
Says Paul JJ Payack, president and chief word analyst of the Texas-based Global Language Monitor:
The environmental movement has had a profound, lasting, and ever-increasing effect on global culture and, hence, the English language.
The articles lists and defines 25 words "generated by Earth Day since 1970." Among them: green, sustainable, eco- (as a prefix), biodegradable, natural and greenwash.

I wish we could come up with a simpler word than sustainable (and sustainability) to mean "the ability to create self-replicating systems that can persist over time" (even though it was GLM's word of the year in 2006). I can't say greenwash is in common use, though its meaning raises a relevant concern: "Highlighting aspects of a product that may or appear to be favorable to the environment in order to re-shape its brand image."

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...