going green in an industry that values upgrades and change

As a designer I am often, unfortunately, in the realm of 'disposing' of things as we renovate and decorate. It sometimes makes me uncomfortable to watch this disposable world we live it.  So, the little I can do I do.  I always discuss sustainable ways to dispose of all things with every client that is willing to hear - Habitat for Humanity, for example, takes old kitchens! And when we choose new, I like to talk about the implications of what we choose - there are always options my clients may not have known about that are a little greener. Recycled glass counters over granite is an option and is an excellent way to keep the quarries from getting depleted. And I am forever trying to get people to re-use so much of what they already have since eco-friendly paints do wonders to old furniture!

Although my industry introduces waste and sometimes toxins, it will happen regardless of whether I am in it or not, so I like to believe I am helping by making sure the right, and smarter, decisions are always made from the start.