Everyone has heard the old adage, "It's not what you know, it's who you know"? In this tough economy - it is both. To make it nowadays, a person must have excellent qualifications and great connections.
Everyone has heard the old adage, "It's not what you know, it's who you know"? In this tough economy - it is both. To make it nowadays, a person must have excellent qualifications and great connections.
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November's speaker in Silicon Valley was Adriane Erickson from Acterra. If you missed the networking event last week, you still have a chance to apply for Acterra’s Environmental Awards, see below for more details.
Applications for Acterra’s 2012 Business Environmental Awards are now available - click here.
This year’s categories are: Environmental Project, Environmental Innovation, Sustainable Built Environment, and the Acterra Award for Sustainability.
Any business, municipality or organization located in the following counties is eligible to apply: Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz County. Non-profits may also apply if environmental work is not their central mission.
The deadline to apply is Friday, December 9, 2011. For more information, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
From speakers to sponsors to attendees, this year’s Opportunity Green Conference had many visionaries that spanned the green economy. One particular booth that I loved was peopleforbikes.org. People for Bikes, a non-profit focused on promoting biking across the nation. Many of our cities in the US need to incorporate bike lanes into their city planning.
Why do we ride? A few interesting facts from the People for Bikes’ website:
47% of Americans would like to see more bike lanes, trails, and bridges in their communities.
1 pound of CO2 pollution cut for every mile pedaled.
50% of trips Americans make are less than 3 miles.
$8,000 spent on average each year owing and operating a car.
3 hours of riding per week reduces the risk of hear disease & stroke by 50%.
$10 saved each day by commuting 10 miles round trip by bicycle instead of car.<!--EndFragment-->
This year’s conference theme of Accelerate fits perfectly with this non-profit. “We chose the theme ‘Accelerate’ for this year’s conference because the successes that have gotten sustainably-minded people and companies to where we are today accelerates and offers the momentum to drive to an even better future.”
The goals of People for Bikes align well with the goals of green acceleration.
People for Bikes:
One for all: Build a national movement to improve bicycling in our country.
We facilitate the movement to transform business for good, through advancing change and market transformation by providing open-minded professional unprecedented approaches to sustainability.
People for Bikes:
Let our voices be heard: Every six years, the federal government allocates billions of dollars to expand and improve our country’s transportation infrastructure. We must improve our bike infrastructure to have the healthy planet everyone dreams of.
Because we have the unique opportunity to do good for our world and our business simultaneously. Now is the time when our leadership is most needed, and will have the most impact on the future of our organization and communities.
We must Accelerate the use of biking in order to have the future we all wish for.
Power to the Pedal People.
This year’s theme of Accelerate fits perfectly with the current momentum of the green economy. We must continue this acceleration in order to have the amount of positive change we need in this world.
Personally, I am especially energized to listen to Conde Nast 2011 Designer of the Year, Yves Behar speak about Redefining Design. Founder and Chief Designer of fuseprojects, Behar has lead many inspiring projects including One Labtop per Child, underwear designed with compostable packaging, “See Better to Learn Better” and many more. Redefining the way we design products incorporating sustainability in every step of the way is the design of today.
What's the value of a green education in getting a green job? Here's your chance to find out!
The San Francisco Bay Area Chapter of the Project Management Institute has been holding a series of 3-hour interactive Green Project Management seminars on topics like sustainability at major corporations, case studies on green projects, and even fusion energy. For more, see the PMI SF Bay Area green blog.
Our November seminar, on Saturday the 19th, will cover the importance of green education in getting a green job. It’s crucial for project managers to be familiar with current legislation and how it affects the overall supply chain. As we move toward stricter standards and globalization of products and services, we must be informed about how products are harvested, manufactured, and distributed throughout the globe. Kelle McMahon, CEO of the Green Science Academy, will show us how the landscape of the job market has changed, making project management skills even more valuable -- in fact, vital -- in today’s job market. She will explain how the skills she developed as a project manager helped her build a company that supports the triple bottom line: people, planet, and sustainable profits. Moreover, she will explore how you can transfer your skills to a job in a green industry, as well as showing how green education will differentiate you from other professionals in the marketplace. If you’re thinking of moving into a green job, this workshop will be perfect for you.
To register, go to the PMI registration page.
Seminar Series - Details
The Green Project Management Seminar Series is co-sponsored by Keller Graduate School and the Project Management Institute San Francisco Bay Area Chapter. The seminars are held on the third Saturday of each month from 9:00 am to 12:00 noon PDT, at Keller Graduate School’s Daly City location. For details and registration information, click here.
Your customers, investors, employees, investors, community, suppliers, and family.
This is just a short list of the many types of stakeholders that support your company. All stakeholders are important for the progress and prosperity of a business.
Strategic employee engagement is the most effective way to foster successful economic, environmental and social initiatives in a company. Employees are learning more about best practices around sustainability, which in turn helps to save the company money. Companies can support these new ideas to spur innovation that will have a ripple effect with the other stakeholders. When a company focuses attention on the employee stakeholder group, it thrives.
On Wednesday, September 21, I will be participating in a roundtable discussion entitled, "Community and Stakeholder Engagement: A Sustainable Approach" and will be joined by representatives from B Corporation, The Green Chamber of Commerce, and the Centre for Sustainability and Excellence. We will discuss communities, renewable energy, stakeholder groups, and more.
The event takes place at the Hotel Palomar from 6:30-8:30. The cost is $30 and food/drink is provided. The first ten people to sign up for the roundtable will gain free entry to EcoTuesday in SF, so register today!
During the roundtable, I will focus on the following:
Employee Engagement Through Building A Green Team: Your Key To Sustainability
Please join us this month in cities across the country to meet new business contacts and friends. Our event this month will take place on Tuesday, September 27. We encourage you to register beforehand so that we know you'll be joining us. In San Francisco ten people will have the opportunity to quickly share their "elevator pitch" about their company in supportive environment! We hope to see you at an EcoTuesday this month.
By the way, our November event will be held a week earlier, on November 15. We will not be hosting a December event.
This April, San Francisco EcoTuesday will feature Dan Geiger, Executive Director at the U.S. Green Building Council - Northern CA Chapter Tuesday, April 26th. Please join us to learn more from Dan on his very interesting talk around "How Green Building Can Save Our World"
Coming off the cusp of California’s new building codes took effect January 1, 2011, referred to as CalGreen, the codes have raised the floor on minimum building standards for new construction, incorporated green elements into base code, and as such are another manifestation of California’s leadership in the green economy.
As Dan states "There has been quite a bit of discussion about the relationship between the codes and rating systems like LEED".
Dan goes on to say, "Industry and policy analysts widely agree that LEED is significantly more rigorous than the new building codes1 2, and is the most powerful tool available for market transformation. In addition, LEED has systems for existing buildings, commercial interiors, core and shell, schools, neighborhoods and more. One way to think of all this is that codes define the floor (and are the law), whereas LEED sets the ceiling".
So with CalGreen codes and LEED Systems in place, "How Green Building Save Our World" will certainly make for a lively discussion.
The U.S. Green Building Council - Northern California Chapter is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit, voluntary organization that educates, motivates, provides resources and advocates for industry transformation to build and maintain sustainable communities.
USGBC’s VISION: Buildings and communities will regenerate and sustain the health and vitality of all life within a generation.
USGBC's MISSION: To transform the way buildings and communities are designed, built and operated, enabling an environmentally and socially responsible, healthy, and prosperous environment that improves the quality of life.
In addition to having Dan lined up as our great speaker this month, we've got a great venue for networking. We are being generously hosted by Temple at their San Francisco office located at 540 Howard.
Known also as Green Temple, Green Temple aims to have the greatest positive impact and limit their negative impact. They achieve this through internally implementing resource conservation measures, perusing innovative and inspirational solutions and engaging in the community. As important as scientific advances and building materials are important, we also need to change the way we live and think. With over 2,000 people a week coming through our doors resource management is exponentially important. By reducing their resource consumption we not only help the planet, but save money.
We get started at 6:30, come join us for some great networking, introduce yourself to a room of professionals, and to learn something new!
RSVP here, $5 online or $10 at the door.
For some, knowing that California's Proposition 23 was largely funded by two Texas oil companies (along with the Koch brothers) might have been enough of a reason to vote against it. Similarly, Proposition 26 got major funding from big oil and tobacco companies. But what does the recent defeat of Prop 23, and the passing of Prop 26, actually mean? And why was one defeated and the other similar one approved, by the same voters?
Prop 23 would have suspended AB32, signed into law by Governor Schwarzenegger in 2006, which requires California to cut greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2020. AB32 is expected to have benefits in these areas -- some of which we've experienced already:
Perhaps you don't live in California. Why should you care what happens here? Because California has a history of being a leader in innovation and clean energy, and what we do here will spread elsewhere. Supporters of Prop 23, almost all from other states, knew this when they backed the measure, and that's why they targeted California. The Republicans' nationwide gains at the polls last week will make it harder to enact climate-protecting legislation at the federal level, so it's all the more crucial for states to take the lead.
Proponents of Prop 23 were clever, though misleading, in calling it a "jobs initiative." In an equally clever move, opponents rebranded it the "Dirty Energy" proposition. This is a wonderful example of how we can reframe a message to get people to think differently about an issue: no one likes the sound of "dirty energy." The No on 23 campaign also bombarded the media and social networking sites with creative, forceful ads, some of which you can see here.
The same effort, unfortunately, didn't go into defeating Prop 26, branded the "Stop Hidden Taxes" initiative, which many of us heard about as an afterthought long after we'd gotten the scoop on Prop 23. Prop 26, now approved by California voters, reclassifies some environmental fees as taxes requiring approval by a two-thirds vote of the state Legislature. And we all know how popular taxes are.
It's not clear how the passing of Prop 26 will affect AB32, though some fear that it will make it harder to impose fees intended to implement AB32. There are reasons to hope that won't be the case; Prop 26 applies only to laws enacted after January 1, and AB32 has been in place since 2006. It could still affect fees levied in the future to support AB32. And even if it doesn't erode AB32, if allowed to stand Prop 26 will have serious consequences, as detailed in a study by the UCLA School of Law. In addition to adversely affecting transportation, law enforcement, and public health, Prop 26 is an attack on the environment. That's because it makes it much harder to impose fees on polluters, now a major source of funding for health and environmental programs. And that leaves taxpayers to pay for the harmful effects of industries like oil companies.
But another challenge remains for Prop 26, and that's its basic legitimacy. It's likely the proposition could face challenges in court -- both because it's badly written, leaving interpretations up to the courts, and because it contradicts Prop 23, which had such a resounding defeat. Still, we'll have to wait and see what happens with Prop 26.
Why did Prop 26 succeed while the similar Prop 23 failed? Anyone who's faced a long California ballot knows how confusingly written most of the propositions are, so it's likely that voters didn't realize they were making contradictory votes. The best antidote to such confusion seems to be good advertising, but Prop 23 got the lion's share of publicity while Prop 26 was left to prevail silently.
This shows the power of not only good publicity but also strong bipartisan collaboration. Perhaps what put the No on Prop 23 campaign over the edge, and enabled the clever strategies used, was the huge collaborative effort among progressives and conservatives, activists and energy companies, Republicans and Democrats. Many of us do have common goals, and the success of Prop 23 shows that if we collaborate on those goals, even when we're dealing with big oil companies and their deep pockets, we can win.
While last week's election results were mixed, in both California and the rest of the country, defeating Prop 23 was a major win for environmentalists, and it will have far-reaching effects that extend throughout our country and even beyond. The election of Jerry Brown as governor will help promote environmental efforts. In this election, California won the right to continue leading the world in clean-energy innovation. Let's all do our part to ensure it remains this way. As Bill McKibben of 350.org noted at the San Francisco Green Festival this past weekend, it's up to all of us to get involved in any way we can. His organization, in addition to hosting worldwide days of action, helped convince the administration to put solar panels back on the White House -- showing that grassroots efforts can make a difference. If we all engage in activities like this and make our voices heard, change will happen. It happened with Prop 23, and we can make it happen again.
I'm happy to introduce our two new San Francisco EcoTuesday Ambassadors!
Jesse Martinez and Jenny Martinez (no relation) have fully stepped up and taken the lead, which has have been a huge help for me in San Francisco as I take a step back (to have a baby) and play a more minor role in organizing the monthly events.
Thanks so much to everyone out there for joining me in welcoming the new family members!
HERE GOES - OUR NEW AMBASSADORS!
Originally from the big state of Texas, Jesse has enjoyed being in San Francisco since 1997. After a few startups and Corporate Life, he currently helps companies minimize or eliminate paper usage through document-driven business process improvement techniques. He is not only passionate about volunteering for great causes (Food Bank, March of Dimes, Habitat for Humanity, etc.) but helping other organizations become more “green” through their efforts thru Connect the Dots. As an EcoTuesday Ambassador, his mission is to help facilitate the bringing together of other like passionate individuals so that we can make a difference/impact on this planet in our lifetime.
Born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, I have worked as a designer for local technology companies and startups. My specialty is the design of brands, web and interactive tools. I believe design can effect change for the common good. My passion is to work for and partner with organizations who’s goals are to build a more sustainable world.
How can we deal with the problems facing our world today? How do we turn a seemingly desperate situation into something positive? It's all too easy to succumb to despair and hopelessness. But if the choice is to do that or to turn what seems desperate into something beneficial, the choice is clear. The keynotes on day 3 of West Coast Green, a conference in San Francisco on green innovation, provided guidance and encouragement. Thanks to Eco Tuesday, I was lucky to be in the audience to hear the speakers and panelists presenting messages of hope along with ideas of how to turn negative situations into positive ones, and even examples of how some individuals have done just that.
Arianna Huffington, Editor-in-Chief of the Huffington Post, expanded on the conference theme of "The Power of 10," which celebrates the exponential change that each of us can help create. When traveling around the country to research her latest book, Third World America, her alarm about the country's condition was turned into amazement at what people are doing on an individual level. If we can scale up from that, she said, we can turn things around. The current crisis is an opportunity for the country to go beyond spending and consumption to create a future with success redefined as something more sustainable, in both the world and our personal lives. We need to focus not on our deficits but on our surpluses, such as time -- as did an unemployed concierge who, because he needed something to do, started We've Got Time to Help to help others. Though the government still has an important role to play, "Hope 2.0," Huffington said, is about "discovering the leader in the mirror." We need to transform our culture, and the politicians will follow when they see which way the wind is blowing. Americans are feeling frustration and anger, but we can channel those feelings in positive, creative ways.
Caroline Casey, host of KPFA's "The Visionary Activist," enchanted the audience with similar ideas from a different angle. She drew on the mythological archetype of the trickster, whose time has come in our world: like a seed that sprouts only after a fire, the trickster emerges at a time in history that seems the most daunting. The ancient Celts believed that only satire could defeat tyranny, and we see that in current public figures like Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert. The trickster is also in each of us: West Coast Green attendees can be thought of as a "council of public dreamers" welcoming the "passionate trickster" in our own heart. Casey urged us to tell positive stories and promote innovative ideas -- like the one of using oil rigs as platforms to harvest kelp, which grows a new crop every two weeks and can be used to produce natural gas or fertilizer. Like the seed sprouting from the fire, we can turn calamity into benefit and find the solution in the problem.
A panel on the intersection of technology, education, and sustainability focused on different areas but with the same message of hope. Andy Mannle, Education Director for WCG, moderated the panel with Hunter Lovins, Founder and President of Natural Capitalism Solutions, and Greg Miller, Technologist and Professor at Presidio Graduate School. In the past, they said, business seemed to be in conflict with sustainability, but research has shown that sustainable business practices are actually more profitable. In Presidio's Green MBA program, Miller and Lovins have promoted an "open source" educational model that redefines who educators are and allows everyone to learn from one another. This needs to go beyond academia, they said; separations must break down between schools, businesses, teachers, and students. A "Madrone League" of sustainability would be differentiated from the Ivy League in part by its pervasiveness and use of many different tools and avenues to spread information. Miller and Lovins believe that education can make the future brighter, and they encouraged everyone to take this to the power of 10 by getting others involved.
I was genuinely inspired by these messages of hope, and of turning despair into something positive and powerful. This is an idea we can take to our personal lives as well as to all the work we do in the world, and especially our green work. I encourage everyone to think of ways you can turn difficult, negative situations into positive ones -- you may find that the result is better than anything you could have imagined.
Earlier this week 350.org founder Bill McKibben went to the White House to with one of the original solar panels that was removed by the Reagan Administration. His request was simple - to reinstall a new solar array as a symbolic gesture of the current administration's commitment to a clean energy future.
We all know that one symbolic gesture is not the only thing it will take to get us out of this situation. What it's going to take is millions of big and small actions across the entire world. The International Day of Action on 10/10/10 has been spearheaded by 350.org to coordinate such an unprecedented undertaking. 350.org's mission is to inspire the world to rise to the challenge of the climate crisis, and they've successfully helped to create awareness of this issue with people even in the most far-reaching places across the globe. We hope you'll get involved.
We are thrilled to have Jurriaan Kamp, the founder of Ode Magazine, as our speaker in San Francisco this month. Kamp will discuss his thoughts on the power and need for optimism and solutions in ourcurrent world, the role of media and specifically Ode in making a positive impact needed to create a sustainable world.
Ode’s mission is to publish stories about the people and ideas that are making a difference. The magazine for “intelligent optimists,” Ode reports on positive news in the areas of health, science, spirit, life, energy and business. Odemagazine.com is a vibrant community that connects readers from around the globe.
Jurriaan Kamp founded Ode Magazine in The Netherlands in 1995 with his wife, Helene de Puy. The magazine continues to thrive there and in 2007, Ode Magazine’s U.S. offices opened in the Bay Area.
Before founding Ode, Kamp was an editor, correspondent in South Asia and Chief Economics Editor at the Dutch daily newspaper NRC Handelsblad. He is the author of Small Change: How Fifty Dollars Changes the World and Because People Matter. Ode Magazine in the Netherlands recently published its 100th issue.
Please join us on Tuesday, September 28th for this amazing opportunity. To register for the event, click here.
When it comes to energy reform on Capitol Hill, there’s a lot of maneuvering going on right now. So far this year, seven different pieces of legislation from both democrats and republicans have either been introduced, passed Senate committee or passed in the House. Melaine Nutter, an aid for Congresswoman and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi stated very clearly at a recent Business Council on Climate Change meeting that Pelosi has made climate legislation one of the flagship issues of her leadership.
With Pelosi at the helm, the House of Representatives as passed one of the seven bills, called the American Clean Energy and Security Act (ACES). It would include a cap and trade on carbon emissions, require the EPA to set vehicle greenhouse gas emissions standards, increase incentives for plug in vehicles, bring more efficiency to buildings and promote performance standards for coal fired power plants. In addition, it would require the country get at least 20 percent of its energy from renewable sources by 2020 and reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 42% by 2030.
However, it’s up the the Senate to finish the job of putting a price on carbon emissions and building a new, green and cleaner energy economy. As it stands today, the American Power Act, introduced by Senators John Kerry and Joe Liberman is likely to be the foundation with which the Senate forms is version of climate and energy legislation. This month the Congressional Budget Office scored their bill and said that it would cut the deficit by $19 billion over the next decade via cap and trade revenue. This bill calls for increased off shore drilling as well as many of the programs in the ACES bill. It is slightly more lenient in terms of a renewable energy procurement, requiring only 15 percent of energy produced in the US come from renewable sources by 2020, as opposed to the 20 percent in the House ACES bill. However, the reductions in greenhouse gas emissions mirror that of ACES- a 42 percent reduction by 2030.
Once the Senate gets around to passing its own version of climate legislation, it will have to be rectified with the House's ACES bill. Time will tell whether the comprised legislation has enough teeth in it to put a dent in carbon offsets, reduce climate change and accelerate our path to a cleaner energy economy. At that point some may argue the bill isn't worth President Obama's signature. Then again others might be happy with the incremental improvements we get.
I was recently at the Cleantechnology Institute Showcase organized by the UC Berkeley Center for Executive Education and the Environmental Business Cluster. I felt like a kid in a candy store. Table after table highlighted technology that’s so new, that few people have heard of them. I experienced a range of emotions from excitement and goose bumps, to confusion and skepticism. The evening made walking across the Berkeley campus in high heels definitely worth it!
On the way home, I passed a house with solar panels on the roof and a feeling of boredom washed over me, as I thought about how unexciting a simple solar panel felt now that I’d experienced what’s coming on the horizon. But then, I reminded myself that at some point in history, that solar panel was very exciting, ground breaking in fact. I wondered, could celebrating the history of cleantech be as interesting as its latest discoveries?
That’s the intent of a new series of posts on the EcoTuesday blog, titled Daily CleanTech. It will honor and celebrate the intrepid scientists and forward thinkers who are the foundation of our blossoming green economy. As the year goes by, check in for the latest update on these famous days in cleantech history. You can also follow these updates on Twitter and Facebook too, @DailyCleanTech, though the updates will be abbreviated and hold less information than the post on the EcoTuesday site.
Our first post on Willhelm Hallwachs and his discovery of the photoelectric effect is first up. Enjoy and please feel free to offer your feedback!