Green Drinks NYC Summer Bash- New York and beyond

Though it was almost 9:30 pm last night before the Social Venture Network NYC Forum dispersed, I was determined to make it to the Green Drinks Summer Bash at Solar One that ended at 10. This was not your ‘every month’ Green Drinks. Many of New York’s Green Who’s Who was still there when I arrived, after the tent lights blinked to let everyone know if was over. I arrived to find that my house guest from AREDAY (American Renewable Energy Day- Aspen) guest, Chip Comins, had left, but Earth’s client David Kistner of Green Apple Cleaners was still there, as was Yale Klat consultant, Chris Neidll of Solar One, Wendy Brawer of Greeen Maps, Stefan Doering, adjunct professor at Columbia University, and many others who were extending their goodbyes to Green Drink NYC Director, the beautiful Margaret Lydecker. The magic of the balmy evening on the East River held us captive, reluctant to let go. Then in walks perhaps the foremost green business guru in the world, Joel Makower, of Green Biz in Oakland.

I aksed people why greenies like to convene so much. I mean, do the members of International Inulation Trade Association and animal Rights people have the same magnetic attraction to each other as those in the Green Movement? “We need to talk to each other because the complexities of the environment and how to address the destruction taking place, means all hands on deck,” said an smart as a whip (?) intern whose name was quickly forgotten as conversations quickly turned to nearby pubs where we could continue our conversation because they were literally taking down the tent. Dear intern, if you read this, please call Earth Advertising at 212-933-1391.

Earth Advertising’s CEO Martha Shaw and 28 others are first graduating class of CleanTechExec at NYU Poly Commission of Sustainable Development (CSD-18) concludes at United Nations May 19

NEW YORK, May. 20 /CSRwire/ – The inaugural class of NYU Polytechnic Institute’s Clean Tech Exec Program graduated this week after presentations of Applied Projects by each member of this select group of New York State’s clean technology leaders. “The Clean Tech Exec Program helps fuel the need for strong leadership and expertise to expedite the growth and implementation of clean energy innovation,” says Michael Shimazu, Project Manager of Clean Energy Research and Market Development at NYSERDA (New York State Energy Research and Development Authority), which helped to fund the Program. “Companies, investors, and government agencies alike see that the need for leadership talent in the burgeoning cleantech industry, a key bottleneck for the growth of new ventures and new businesses in this sector, especially in New York City,” says Clean Tech Exec’s professor, Mel Horwitch.

“Among my Applied Projects were the greening of NYU’s Rogers Hall, and the structuring of a cleantech commercialization conduit (a.k.a. C3) to help new technologies get beyond tipping point where they often fail to scale up,” says Clean Tech Exec grad and CEO of Earth Advertising, Martha Shaw.

Under the leadership of Martha Shaw, Earth Advertising has become a major player in the prosperity of green businesses, products and services in the New York area. A founding member of the Sustainable Business Network NYC chapter of BALLE, Clean Energy Week, board member of the New York Solar Energy Society, and active participant in the growth of NYC’s green economy, CEO Martha Shaw also recently participated in the May 10-19 UN Commission for Sustainable Development (CSD-18) in hopes of setting the stage for a successful Rio Summit +12. Commission of Sustainable Development (CSD-18) concludes at United Nations May 19.

The Commission is responsible for reviewing progress in the implementation of Agenda 21 and the Rio Declaration on Environment and Development; as well as providing policy guidance to follow up the Johannesburg Plan of Implementation (JPOI) at the local, national, regional and international levels. CSD is the high-level forum for sustainable development within the United Nations system.

“The themes at the United Nations CSD over the last week covered a full gamut of issues faced by each country and group represented,” says Martha Shaw. Among them were chemical and waste management, over-consumption and over-manufacturing of goods, fisheries depletion, food shed contamination, and the inequality of the distribution of earth resources including water and agricultural products. Many of the NGOs, including women and indigenous peoples, voiced concerns of poverty caused by lack of control over natural resources that are consumed and polluted by others.

Many CSD-18 attendees sought to redefine the notion of sustainable development to “green economy” and much discussion took place around what the word “economy” means to whom.

It was more evident than ever that the environment is not just about saving the planet, it is a social topic. The consumption of resources is not evenly distributed. It is the poor, women and children, and indigenous people who suffer most from scarcity of healthy food and water, and contamination, imposed on them by the privileged lifestyle of others, and corporate practices. The CSD is a rare opportunity for all voices to be heard.

Under Secretary General Sha Zukang of the United Nations opened the CSD Prep Conference by letting all participants know that he would not tolerate lack of cooperation among entities, in no uncertain terms.

A blossoming of green and sustainability gatherings.

Every day of the week, all over the world, executives, academics and NGOs convene on the myriad of topics around the environment, from food, to energy, new fuels, climate change, waste, chemicals, governance, mining, transportation and inequities. The number of sustainability events and professionals is growing exponentially.

In the last few months Shaw has attended CERES, The Economist “Doing Well by Doing Good,” Clean Energy Week, ReTech, Manhattan Chamber of Commerce Green Committees, Go Green Expo, Solid Waste Advisory Boards, Clean Economy Network, State of the Planet, IESES, ACCO, Beneath the Sea, Sustainable Business Network NYC, Slow Food, Wings Worldquest, Recycle Awareness Day and others.

“We are in the business of information gathering and transfer as much as advertising. By having a finger on the pulse, we can engage companies and customers in authentic dialogue, and help all stakeholders make better informed decisions,” says Shaw. “We are gatherers. From our research we devise creative ways to communicate and create mindset shifts, and often times, consensus.”

Baby steps

Baby steps?

Don’t you love that expression? This is the expression people use to explain why they haven’t gone green even though they are sustainability preachers. “Baby steps.” One foot in front of the other. “One thing a day,” I heard one evangelist preach. One thing a day? Why not all day? “But, we’re only human…” What does that mean? Help, my head hurts. An undisclosed green preacher once told a crowd as she launched her book, “Now I’m not saying you have to change your toilet paper, we all like nice soft toilet paper, but how about your fax paper? It should be at least 30% recycled content.” And nobody laughed. It’s ok to wipe yourself with old growth forest, but not to waste our forests in a fax machine? This is why I keep my thoughts to myself. If I stick my neck out, I myself will be decapitated. For instance, I drove to this conference. I would have missed the opening remarks otherwise, because I had to take my kid to school on time… THIS is why everyone loves the mantra “baby steps.” Turning down the air conditioner, for instance, can serve as a sense of relief…like confession.

I’m suggesting a full on diet of less waste. Pulling in the belt. Take a mug to Starbucks. Get your pizza on a cloth napkin carried in your pocket. This is no joke. We have to do this. It’s crazy not to. There is no time for baby steps.
Every single thing we can do, we must do. It’s like going on a diet. No, you don’t need the cream filled donut. You just want the cream filled donut. But you think of your thighs and you don’t eat it. If we thought of the health of the very planet that sustains us, maybe we’d bring our own mug. Or buy 100% post consumer tp. As kids we played a game like giant steps and it was fun.