By Dan Saccardi
I recently concluded a yearlong experiment to track what I eat on a daily basis, not to count calories but to measure—and manage—my environmental impact.
As a sustainability consultant, I've counseled clients that "you can only manage what you measure," but I've not as rigorously applied this adage to my personal life. So, to borrow another adage, I decided to practice what I have preached.
Monday was a momentous day for LRN and GreenOrder, as colleagues came together in one space in the heart of New York City. Our new offices in NYC at 745 Fifth Avenue will enhance collaboration and foster the development of powerful ideas and solutions.
Last Thursday night on the kayak home I encountered a traffic jam of container ships jockeying for position in the San Francisco Bay. When I started kayak commuting, in October of 2009, I went months before coming across more than one or two ships on a commute. Last night there were five.
As I approached the shipping channel waiting for the right time to cross, the inbound Hanjin Long Beach had to pull a Crazy Ivan near the Bay Bridge to make way for the outbound Evergreen Eagle. To the east, the APL Jade unroped and pushed off from the Port of Oakland, headed for Tokyo.
The Ying Mang March, meanwhile, radioed in, “Channel 14, I am going to wait here till this traffic clears.” That is not an 18-wheeler idling by the side of the road. That is 100,000 tons of sea-going vessel, parked next to Alcatraz Island at a burn rate of $70 a minute. The economy, it appears, is back.
It's a beautiful day in Manhattan. Little white triangles glitter
atop rooftop water towers while the streets below are filled with an
ironic stillness – as if the metropolis were hesitant to resume its
normal frenetic rhythm. Even a car park has a sort of mystic beauty when
everything is blanketed by ten inches of candescent powder.
course the streets are also filled with slush. Lots of it. If you're
careful, you'll avoid the brown tidal waves of melted snow, sediment,
and runoff that tend to submerge the sidewalks like the front row at a
Sea World production whenever anything larger than a stroller happens to
plow its way through.
At every intersection, there's a puddle
seemingly big enough to supply the entire island with local farm raised
fish for a week — but I manage to successfully navigate my freshly
pressed suit pants through the icy swamp.
At work I'm
flipping through the latest headlines: "Snowpocalypse," "Snowstorm
Wallops Northeast – Piling on the Misery," "Monster Snow." OK, really?
I'm sufficiently terrified now. Read an article or two and you'll think
that precipitation is a never-before-experienced phenomenon.
A good friend who is also a licensed pilot took me and Marcela, my wife, on a low-altitude tour of San Francisco in a Cessna 172. North of the city there are water patterns in fields that resemble veins in a leaf. It's striking at that altitude to see how quickly the urban area gives way to undisturbed land.
We see some interesting things happening at the intersection of strategy and sustainablity. That is why the folks here at GreenOrder put together the "GO THINK" blog - an insider's guide to business, environmental issues, and our culture and ideas. We hope that our posts here spark your thinking, and that you join the conversation. For good old-fashioned media coverage on GreenOrder, articles authored by the our team, and upcoming speaking engagements, check out our News & Events page.
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