I had the good fortune of meeting Robert E. Lane when my friend Robert Lane (no "E" and no relation to the former) introduced us. They met by chance and by virtue of sharing the same name. When I first met Robert E. Lane, he had the idea for GrayisGreen.org and now, through his efforts and the efforts of others, it has come to reality.
Below is a description of the National Senior Conservation Corps. I love the energy and attitude that they, and their entire generation for that matter, bring to tackling tough problems (and they have tackled a few!).
So congratulations Robert E. Lane and thank you Robert Lane for the introduction.
GrayisGreen.org is a product of the elderly residents of Whitney Center, a retirement home in Hamden, Connecticut. While the generation born in the 1930s may be called seniors, we elderly were born in the 1910s and 1920s. With one exception, ours is an honorable history. We grew up in – and survived – the depression, defeated Fascism, Nazism, and Japanese imperialism, created the United Nations, held steady in the Cold War and, along with our children, defeated the tyrannical Communist system. We have been called the “Civic Generation” because, more than earlier and later generations, we took an interest in public affairs, turned out to vote, organized civic groups to fight for civil rights, civil liberties, and the relief of illness and poverty.
But we exploited the earth’s limited resources like no other generation before us. We used up nonrenewable fossil fuels, cut down the world’s forests, exhausted our fisheries, extinguished many rare species, polluted the air we breathe and the water we drink, and heedlessly contributed to global warming. Now, at last, we know better and, as best we can, seek to repair the damage and to leave the world a more habitable and greener place.
We address our appeal broadly: first, of course, to our fellow elders, then to seniors about to become elders, then, to our children, the boomers, who are about to inherit the earth, and to their children and their children’s children in that seamless web of continuity that is the future of humankind. Elsewhere on this website is a Pledge to Planet Earth, where, modeled on the Athenian Oath, we ask others to join our pledge to leave the world a better place. To this end, we have organized resident-management “green teams” seeking to conserve energy (cheering the bookkeeper who pays the utility bills), recycle waste, reduce emission of CO2, police the use of pesticides, control water runoff from impervious ground covering, guide purchasing policy toward low carbon footprint goods, and monitor building to follow LEED standards. We educate ourselves and others by mounting conservation exhibits, publishing “greentips,” and volunteering to manage this website dedicated to conservation by and for the elderly.