Tag Archives: sustainability

Episode 44 Joel Makower

How we define a life well lived? It helps to interview someone who’s been at it for four decades and found their sweet spot for contribution and joy.

In this week’s Regen360 iTunes podcast show we hear from Joel Makower, the Chairman and Executive Editor of GreenBiz Group. They’re the producer of the VERGE conference and also GreenBiz forums and the State of Green Business report. Joel is a journalist by training and loves the convergence of sustainability with technology and innovation.

We discuss some of Joel’s insight into green business successes and his thoughts on the future, as well as reflecting on his active career and legacy.

To the greening of business!

David

Episode 43 Amory Lovins

For most of my life, we’ve taken the wrong path and failed to take the sustainable road. Capitalism fought sustainability, viewing it as another form of regulation and increased costs and risks.

But to deny sustainability and its integration to all creation is to not only heighten risk but fail to reap huge financial rewards while boosting health for the planet and all living.

Amory Lovins helped us shift the energy paradigm in his 1976 Foreign Affairs article, Energy Strategy: The Road not Taken. His work sparked worldwide revolutions and billions of dollars of energy conservation and renewable power.

This week’s Regen360 iTunes podcast show features a conversation with Amory Lovins. His impact is just about second to none. Through his extensive library of publications, global keynotes and 35 years of leading the think tank Rocky Mountain Institute, he has helped us define and travel “the road not taken.”

Amory’s brilliance has been focussed on inventing a new triple-bottom-line economy, or as he co-authored, Natural Capitalism. He synthesizes complicated calculations the way we breathe oxygen. It seems each year he has invented another start up or ecological concept that will not only help save Earth, but add trillions of dollars of growth to the global economy. Instead of fighting capitalism like some NGOs, his organization harnesses its strength and innovation to create capital growth through enormous energy savings and integrative design.

I encourage you to tune in to this week’s Regen360 iTunes podcast show to hear Amory Lovins, one of the planet’s most important visionaries.

To building the road not taken together!

-David

Episode 39 John Mandyck

More than ever we need organizations to step up their environmental commitments and stewardship. This requires extensive goal setting, research, improvement and measurement, and verification. Though some believe environmental performance hurts business, many are finding it can actually boost the profitability, stock performance, and brand.

I remember when we founded the U.S. Green Building Council and our LEED Green Building Rating System back in the early 90s, some of our board members only wanted us to work with activist NGOs and avoid large corporations at our table. They were leery of the heavy hand of business and that they’d try to control our nascent non-profit and extinguish our lofty goals.

Well, thankfully we didn’t adhere to that call and remained open to both sides to join us. One of the world’s biggest corporations actually turned out to support us the most of almost any other. United Technologies [known as UTC] not only contributed Rick Fedrizzi, our founding Chairman, and long-term CEO but provided decades of voluntary assistance, financial contributions, and advancement of our professionalism and credibility into the marketplace.

Today’s Regen360 iTunes podcast show features an interview with UTC’s Chief Sustainability Officer, John Mandyck. John also chairs the Corporate Advisory Board for the World Green Building Council, which I founded in 2002. John and I spent interesting times together as we worked to help foster the formation and growth of the China, Russia and India Green Building Councils.

In our conversation, John informs us about UTC’s significant emphasis on the importance and benefit of adopting a deep sustainability program. UTC is not only a global leader in aerospace, food refrigeration, and commercial buildings but also environmental ingenuity and performance. We learn about UTC’s sponsorship of a fascinating indoor air quality research project with Harvard University and John’s book Food Foolish.

To corporations stepping it up to helping us sustain and prosper!

David Gottfried

Episode 19 Peter Ellis

Every so often you meet someone who just blows your mind. At first, you don’t think they’re for real, but then you realize that such an extraordinary human being actually does exist.

I first met the renowned architect Peter Ellis about twenty years ago. His firm at the time, SOM Architects, had asked me to join their team to compete as the development, construction and design team for San Francisco’s Presidio Letterman complex. I’d be the sustainability consultant for the 26 acre ground up mini town within the old Army base located along the fabulous waterfront. A more prominent site was extremely rare anywhere in the world.

What was so unusual was how Peter intuitively understood the natural development potential of that inspiring site above the Bay. I think he must have been camping out on the site since he knew it’s natural characteristics so well: winds, groundwater tables, solar exposure, gradations, history, and indigenous species.

Whereas competing designs proposed building enormous monuments that felt more like cold windy urban downtowns, Peter sketched out a new town complete with main street, pedestrian access throughout, and mixed use appropriately scaled buildings surrounded by huge open parks. He had coffee and bike shops, and rental apartments along with new senior housing and a hotel, opening up the historic site to the public.

Even though we came in the runner-up position to George Lucas’ film production company, Peter and I remained friends and colleagues. He went on to design large cities, including Jaypee Sports City that would house a million people in India, 30 miles south of New Delhi. His city and campus design practice embraced new concepts on transportation, water, energy and waste. Another specialty is Peter’s focus in re-structuring of America’s 19th-century cities, always looking for how they could contribute positively to the natural environment.

It’s a true pleasure to share with you my conversation with Peter about his vital work in this week’s Regen360 iTunes podcast. I hope you’ll join me in being inspired by Peter’s vast vision and love of architecture that sustains.

Thanks for your support,
David