It's that time of year again. A time to reflect on the year past and look forward to the year ahead. A time for taking stock, making resolutions, and pinning our hope on the year that's stretched out in front of us. And this year, I'm more excited than ever about the potential for great green changes in 2010.

So why am I so excited about the new year? Because now more than ever, we are on the precipice of some really exciting action in the environmental movement, especially in regards to protecting our kids. 

2009 brought us lots of eco-news, like the development of CPSIA, the intense dialogue about BPA, and even the SIGG backlash. Stories like that come and go every year, but what was really remarkable about these stories in 2009 was the consumer response.  

Even with the economy in a nosedive, it was more apparent than ever last year that parents want quality to come first when it comes to their children. The uproar over lead in toys and BPA in baby products confirmed that parents are getting informed about what's going into the items they bring home. And the sheer number of folks who stood up and voiced their concerns over the finding of BPA in SIGG bottles was nothing less than staggering.  

The interconnectedness of the web, with social networks like Twitter and Facebook, means that "green parenting" issues are no longer only discussed on "green parenting" websites and chat boards. Parents everywhere can get updated information about the issues that affect our children with the click of a mouse. And in between updating your friends on your weekend plans, and playing a game of Farmville, you can catch up on the latest eco-news or chat with an old friend about the best places to find organic produce in your area.

So issues like toxins in children's toys and the quality of school lunches are no longer "niche" topics but rather they have hit the mainstream. That means change is right around the corner. When USA Today and the Today show are talking about issues like BPA and the quality of school lunches, you can bet it won't be long before Congressional representatives are fighting over who gets to sponsor the bill that produces change.

Of course, that doesn't mean that there is nothing left to be done. Nor does it mean that the rest of us can sit back and wait to see what the mainstream media covers next. It's our collective voices, in person, in text, and on the Web, that have gotten us this far. There's no telling how much further we can go in 2010.  

As for me, I have high hopes and big eco-plans for 2010. How about you?

Photo: aranem

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