To their credit, many shows, especially the ones geared toward quickly selling your home, do show designers painting or re-working existing pieces. I'd like to see more shows featuring designers re-purposing items that are no longer being used in the room receiving the makeover. Wouldn't you be interested to see how the kitchen cabinets were hung in the garage and part of the countertop reused to form a garage workspace? I know I'd love to see creative ways to put some storage in my teeny-tiny laundry closet (can't be called a room because it's not) by using pieces cast off from other parts of the house. I know those talented TLC and HGTV designers could do it.
I don't have a lot of "green" elements to my home. I have hardwood floors throughout the home but they are not made of renewable cork or bamboo. I am certainly not going to rip up these floors and replace them with renewable wood because that would be creating waste and still using new resources. The foremost idea of being "green" is to lessen the amount of waste generated. The appliances that we had to replace because they were broken were replaced with Energy Star appliances but I am not about to replace my perfectly good stove just to get one with an Energy Star rating. That would be wasteful. Before I discovered more natural cleaning products I had a closet full of Lysol, Scrubbing Bubbles, Comet scouring powder, and Soft Scrub. My laundry room held Tide, Shout, and Downy, and I always dusted with Pledge. I am all for reducing toxins in the home but to throw out all those cleaning products would be wasteful both financially and environmentally. Instead I slowly replaced each product with its "greener" option once the product was empty. Some products, like the Lysol, I still keep around for emergencies like a child with the stomach flu at 4 a.m. when you and I both know there's no way I'll be hauling out my steam cleaner to sanitize the bathroom floor naturally.
Once a product has been made the resource has been used. Whether that resource is renewable or not it doesn't make a lot of sense to throw that product into a landfill so it can be replaced with a "greener" version unless the product has truly lost its usefulness.
I love decorating shows. I especially love "green" episodes of decorating shows. But being green is a verb, not a soundbite.