On 10/11/11 Eco Brooklyn, a green builder and supporter of a better America and world, went down to the Financial district to check out Occupy Wall Street. Nearly 30 days ago, a diverse group of citizens took to the street in NYC, and marched down to Zuccotti Park, formerly “Liberty Plaza Park”, placed in between Wall Street, the financial center of the U.S., and Ground Zero.
Although formal demands will not be made, the message brought by Occupy Wall Street is clear. They call for an end to corruption and greed, to bring about a better, cleaner, fairer world. Cleaner, fairer, and better are all words that definitely relate to the idea of sustainability, which seems to be a theme for the protesters at OWS. They hope to create a sustainable system of economics and government that’s not only sustainable for the people in charge and involved now, but also for the people of the future. Similarly to OWS, Eco Brooklyn sees the need for an immediate change in the building and construction industry. For too long, a system has been used that leads to crumbling infrastructure and high energy costs, and now it’s time for an immediate change to use recycled and salvaged material to make zero energy homes. This is a practical goal, that’s sustainable not only for the people living in the new homes, but also for the generations to come.
OWS also has areas for making and displaying art, garbage collection and recycling, a food buffet, a drum circle/music group, a webcast, an info center for volunteers, as well spaces to access the internet and charge cell phones and battery powered devices. With mattresses and sleeping bags spread throughout these areas, one had to be careful navigating between the people protesting and things and people on the ground, but despite the difference in peoples body language and stature, the feeling of unity was unmistakable- everyone united as one, fighting for a better, fairer, cleaner world. For more check out Thomas Friedman’s Op-Ed piece in the New York Times.