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How ‘Green’ Can a Giant Mansion Be?

How ‘Green’ Can a Giant Mansion Be?

 

It’s not really news that another super rich celebrity couple has built a $20 million mansion. That is pretty standard in a day in the life of the one percent. However, when one of these millionaires (excuse me, almost-billionaires) considers herself an eco-activist, I start to question.

Supermodel Gisele BŁndchen and her NFL quarterback husband Tom Brady have just completed their $20 million home in the Los Angeles area. The 22,000 square foot mansion includes “eight bedrooms, a six-car garage, wine cellar, weight room, and a lagoon shaped swimming pool.”

But don’t worry, the couple has taken a few measures to ensure that their pad is ‘green.’ Their gargantuan house includes both solar panels and a rainwater recovery system.

Kudos to Gisele and Tom. Seriously. I’m not trying to begrudge them their success. But I must ask the question. Can solar panels and rain water collection negate the environmental and social impact of a giant mansion? In a culture that encourages everyone to constantly buy more stuff, isn’t an unnecessarily huge house a waste of resources and space? Many people agree that the most environmentally sustainable house is a small house.

What do you think? Is Gisele’s move inherently hypocritical? Or should we applaud her for at least attempting to make her home eco-friendly?

 

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Photo from Tiago Chediak via Wikimedia

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134 comments

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7:46PM PDT on May 13, 2013

Wow, thank you.

7:46PM PDT on May 13, 2013

Wow, thank you.

7:45PM PDT on May 13, 2013

Wow, thank you.

4:24AM PDT on Mar 15, 2013

See, here's the thing: this power couple has an ungodly amount money. Period. They WILL buy a big house. Is it more room than they need? Almost certainly. Will that stop anyone who has a lot of money? Probably not.

However, I do have to give them kudos for doing these two measures. Is it a lot? In the scheme of things, not really. But if they get to call themselves "green" and they can get their friends to emulate them and being "green" becomes associated with "hip" and "trendy" instead of "tree hugging liberal," I'm not going to complain.

4:24AM PDT on Mar 15, 2013

See, here's the thing: this power couple has an ungodly amount money. Period. They WILL buy a big house. Is it more room than they need? Almost certainly. Will that stop anyone who has a lot of money? Probably not.

However, I do have to give them kudos for doing these two measures. Is it a lot? In the scheme of things, not really. But if they get to call themselves "green" and they can get their friends to emulate them and being "green" becomes associated with "hip" and "trendy" instead of "tree hugging liberal," I'm not going to complain.

7:01AM PST on Jan 21, 2013

Thank you Lindsay, for sharing this!

10:04AM PST on Dec 1, 2012

Thank your for sharing.

2:59PM PST on Nov 21, 2012

jeez

9:17AM PST on Mar 8, 2012

It is disgusting and obcene for any one family to have such a big house, green or no green. No one needs all that. Get a reasonable house that fits your needs and with the rest of that money you could build several houses for those who are homeless.

6:16PM PST on Mar 6, 2012

Even a house that big could've been so much 'greener' given their resources. What kind of raw materials did they use? How did they alter the natural land to create foundations? Do they actually have the kind of lifestyle that can justify needing all those bedrooms? (Who knows? Maybe the do sleep eight on a regular basis??)

If I had that kind of money I'd do it differently.

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