sustainability

Sustainability Summit at MIT

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Mindy Lubber, president of Ceres (and listed as a "green hero" to the right — follow those links to see how she got there), is one of the speakers at MIT's Sustainability Summit April 24.

According to a release, the point of the summit is to explore we can transition to a sustainable world.


Joel Gordes: "Treat it as a national security issue"

Another in a series of miniprofiles of sustainability-minded people who are working to reduce humankind’s footprint on the planet. They're "mini" not only because they're short, but because all the questions are 10 words or less, and the answers are requested to match.

JOEL GORDES, 62, West Hartford, Conn. Energy consultant, Environmental Energy Solutions

What do you do? “I work on all sorts of energy-related issues, including energy efficiency, renewable energy, climate change and the insurance industry, and energy security.”

Green epiphany: “Flying missions over Vietnam. I was an Air Force officer flying unarmed reconnaissance, and the land looked like the craters of the moon in places. Then in 1972, after I came home, I happened to read an article in Scientific American about the cratering of Southeast Asia. That was my moment.”

Green hero:Dr. Albert E. Burke. He was a Yale professor who was the first to use television as an educational medium working at the connection of the environment, our resources, and our freedoms. He came publicly before Rachel Carson, before Barry Commoner, before Buckminster Fuller.”


Paul Eldrenkamp: "Not as hypocritical as I used to be"

Somewhat akin to love of one's children, I like everything I publish, but some posts are more equal than others, and this installment in my series of miniprofiles of sustainability-minded people is just terrific, I think. (Please note: I attribute this to the subject, not to me; this ain't braggin'.) To recap, the profiles are "mini" not only because they're short, but because all the questions are 10 words or less, and the answers are requested to match.

PAUL ELDRENKAMP, 51, Newton Owner, Byggmeister Inc., a residential remodeling contractor

Green epiphany: “About 6 years ago, when I realized that no one was keeping score in terms of household energy consumption.”

Green hero:Linda Wigington of Affordable Comfort (ACI). She initiated the North American Thousand Home Challenge (pdf available here), reaching out to people across the country to do deep energy retrofits and then to share the information we learn.”


Preston Koerner: "Leave it better than you found it."

Another in a series of miniprofiles of sustainability-minded people who are working to reduce humankind’s footprint on the planet. They're "mini" not only because they're short, but because all the questions are 10 words or less, and the answers are requested to match.

Preston KoernerPRESTON KOERNER, 29, Salt Lake City Lawyer, LEED AP, and founder of Jetson Green, an exceptionally informed website on green building initiatives.

What do you do: “I’m obsessed with green building and with helping other people become obsessed with green building.”

Did you know Jetson Green was going to be such a hit? “Not at all.”

Green epiphany: “Boy Scouts is when it started: 'Leave it better than you found it.’”


Janine Benyus: "Life creates conditions conducive to life"

Another in a series of miniprofiles of sustainability-minded people who are working to reduce humankind’s footprint on the planet. They're "mini" not only because they're short, but because all the questions are 10 words or less, and the answers are requested to match. (Please, no counting.)

Janine BenyusJANINE BENYUS, 50, Stevensville, Mont. Cofounder, Biomimicry Guild; Author, "Biomimicry, Innovation Inspired By Nature"

What do you do? "I’m a biologist at the design table, helping innovators consult life's genius to create sustainable designs."

Green epiphany: "Asking the question, 'is anyone consiously trying to emulate the elegant, well-adapted, fit technologies of nature?' It was about 1990."


An architect's guide to sustainability

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Stefan Behnisch, in conversation with audience members after his presentation.

Stefan Behnisch, who certainly could claim leadership in the clan of the world’s most sustainability-attuned architects, just by offering only his Boston work for evidence, followed Van Jones in the east auditorium at the convention center. He was affable, gentle, and self-assured. While Jones spoke about what can be accomplished, Behnisch described some of what he has accomplished, recapping several of his projects while pointing out the elements of sustainability exemplified by each.


Addie Cranstoun: "Green doesn't have to be more expensive"

Another in a series of miniprofiles of sustainability-minded people who are working to reduce humankind’s footprint on the planet. They're "mini" not only because they're short, but because all the questions are 10 words or less, and the answers are requested to match. (Please, no counting.)
Addie Cranstoun

ADDIE CRANSTOUN, 29, Manager, Green Depot, Waltham

Green Depot sells building materials focused on environmentally friendly products. Stoneham is one of five locations for the company, which is headquartered in Brooklyn, N.Y.

Green epiphany: "In elementary school, one of the first major issues I tackled was concern about our ozone layer."

Green hero: "Jane Goodall. Not only for the work she’s done, but recently, she’s doing more speaking and trying to educate children that they can have sustainability at the forefront of their future."


Brian Butler: "Where it all goes, that place called 'away'"

Another in a series of miniprofiles of sustainability-minded people who are working to reduce humankind's footprint on the planet.
BRIAN BUTLER, 40, Somerville
Owner, Boston Green Building
BGB is a general contractor specializing in sustainable building. "Our focus is making general contracting as green as it can be, given the scope of a given client’s resource and projects," said Butler, who is married with a son.


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