Crystal Ball

By | 2017-07-12T00:11:01+00:00 July 17th, 2017|

I don’t have a crystal ball, but there are a few things I feel comfortable predicting. The sun will come up tomorrow, for instance, even if the clouds make it hard to spot. Too cute? Alright, I’ll go out on a more substantive limb by saying computer power is going to get smaller and cheaper per unit [...]

The Time is Now

By | 2017-07-12T00:11:01+00:00 July 10th, 2017|

We’ve talked a lot in this space about what others are doing to solve the sustainability problems associated with plastic and other materials. We’ve talked about recycling and other steps that society can take to help alleviate the spread of plastic waste in our landfills and oceans. Today, though, [...]

Independence Day

By | 2017-06-07T15:44:56+00:00 July 4th, 2017|

Independence is a relative thing. This time of year, certainly, we think in terms of independence from foreign powers or from governments that would impose their will unjustly. But the truth is that bondage doesn't require anything so nefarious or even deliberate. In fact, I propose that there are t [...]

In At the Start

By | 2017-06-07T15:12:34+00:00 July 3rd, 2017|

“I was there when it happened.” It’s a phrase many of us enjoy using with our children or grandchildren. “I saw people dancing as the Berlin Wall fell,” we tell them, meaning probably that we watched it on TV. “We gathered around our sets when men walked on the moon.” We take credit for those events [...]

A Million Things to Do

By | 2017-06-07T14:58:49+00:00 June 5th, 2017|

It’s no small thing to save the planet. It seems like it should be at the top of the list, right? Let’s see, how does that list look these days? Take kids to soccer practice—well, encouraging fitness is important. Fix deck steps. Yes, can’t save the planet with a broken ankle. Get project notes to t [...]

First, Do No Harm

By | 2017-07-12T00:11:01+00:00 February 24th, 2017|

Don’t stop me, even though you’ve heard this one before. A man walks into a doctor’s office waving his arm up and down. “Doc,” he says, “It hurts when I do this.” “Then don’t do that,” the doctor tells him. It’s good advice, and we ought to be taking it as a society. 80 billion plastic water bottles [...]

Word Play Part II

By | 2017-07-12T00:11:01+00:00 February 8th, 2017|

I was talking last time about the need to find common ground in the valley that separates some on either side of the sustainability debate. It starts with an understanding of the word sustainable. We’ve given it a powerful context around the environment and our natural resources. With that context i [...]

Word Play Part I

By | 2017-07-12T00:11:02+00:00 February 3rd, 2017|

If I took a survey on the word sustainable—if I called a thousand households and asked them for their reaction to the word, a phrase, a definition, an image it brings to their mind, I wonder what exactly I’d get. I’m sure I’d get a full range of responses, including hang ups. With no context, it mig [...]

Go Boldly in the Right Direction

By | 2017-07-12T00:11:02+00:00 July 11th, 2016|

Star Trek has been entertaining viewers for nearly 50 years now—in fact, it turned 50 this year. It presents a bright and optimistic future, one in which most of mankind’s troubles—poverty, racism, scarcity—have been overcome. Technology is a huge part of that. The food replicator makes whatever you [...]

Doing Well by Doing Good

By | 2017-02-08T15:44:38+00:00 May 20th, 2016|

The balance between profit and purpose is one principle of which more businesses pay attention. They do so for many good reasons. Profit, of course, is the assumed goal of business generally. Though much maligned, profit has to be acknowledged as the thing that makes a business possible, and therefo [...]