Posts filed under ‘Entrepreneurship’
Ruminated on by Nick
The NY Times today ran a story that documents one of the larger shifts in Chinese economic policy in recent memory: http://www.nytimes.com/2008/10/13/world/asia/13china.html
Bringing this number of peasant farmers into the land banking system strikes me as a profound, forward-thinking move. Knowing little about Chinese policies, it does strike me that folks should have some ability to have direct ownership of essential assets–mostly free from government interest–but that the government should have some oversight. Though not a full, free-market reform like we enjoy in the States, I think this may be a positive first step in the process of decoupling economic from political freedoms that was first initiated in Tianeman Square.
Contemplated by Nick
7th Generation recently published its own index of market trends, observations, and responses. One last statistic, in particular, caught my interest:
- Number of jobs created per 10,000 tons of waste incinerated: 1
- Number of jobs created per 10,000 tons of waste landfilled: 6
- Number of jobs created per 10,000 tons of waste recycled: 36
The 36x return on employment that waste recycling creates seems to make good business sense on nearly every level. In some ways, it raises the question of whether we could profit off such a trend–my suspicion is yes. GE’s ecomagination initiative–so popularly featured throughout the Olympics right now, seems to suggest yes–investment is clearly following a growing trend of consumer interest in green alternatives to conventional ways of doing business. Call them ecoprises runs by ecocapitalists, these Green Entrepreneurs and Leaders are redefining business as we know it, and in many cases, finally doing good by doing well.
Penned by Nick
A recent article on the supply-demand dynamics of the green labor market caught my attention–it was exceedingly on point. Rarely has the economic climate and the labor market been at more tested extremes. The global economic slowdown stands in sharp relief to the growing threat–some dare say opportunity–that climate change presents, all at a time when the environmental leaders necessary to defuse the climate meltdown are in short supply. Stated simply, the world needs environmental leaders now more than ever–and they’re hard to find.
Posted by Nick
San Francisco’s long had a green vibe to it. Curbside recycling rates in the San Franciscan metropolitan area rank among the highest in the nation, and with ecopreneurs like Recycle Bank entering the mix, these rates are quickly being matched nationwide. California will likely continue to be fertile ground for new ideas that power the green economy. Across every industry in California (indeed, the globe), a green revolution is underway. Local government initiatives such as the cities of San Francisco’s and Palo Alto’s are awakening the collective unconscious of urban preservation. Venture Capital firm’s such as Vinod Khosla’s and Al Gore’s & Dave Blood’s Generation Management are creating green jobs through double bottom line investments. The Federal government, for its part, continues–albeit slowly–to increase incentives for renewable energy standards and programs. Looking forward, it is imperative that federal investment continue into these innovative enterprises through mechanisms such as the Federal Income Tax Credit for solar installations. Coupled with the grassroots initiatives such as the one spearheaded by Van Jones at the Ella Baker Center, and the larger, global, consumer tide turning communities green, California remains poised to benefit and prosper from the coming Green Renaissance.
It’s fertile ground out West. As a native, I hope you’ll join us, if only in spirit. And should you go so far as to come to California, please, do, wear flowers in your hair.
Posting by Nick, US MD
San Francisco’s long had a green vibe to its community. With curbside recycling programs amongst the highest in the nation, a recently appointed Director of Climate Protection Initiatives, and a longstanding connection to the counter-culture revolution of the 1960′s that stirred loose activists’ environmental consciousness, the City remains poised to lead the nation towards a greener future. As a native Californian, this transformation seems natural. San Franciscan’s are conscious citizens, if nothing else. What’s both fascinating and heartening is to see how quickly these ideas are propagating out to the rest of the nation, and how the attendant flow of ideas and human capital is reshaping the US marketplace. Communities nationwide are quickly closing the recycling gap due to programs like Recycle Bank, a New York-based starup that’s changing the economics of curbside programs. Vinod Khosla’s venture investments are spinning off cleantech and greentech startups that are taking root nationwide, often in the most unlikely of places, and in the process, multiplying the effect of each dollar invested ten fold by creating new jobs. Organizations like the Ella Baker Center are reshaping the national debate about the importance of green collar jobs, integrating issues of social and racial justice into the dialogue, and pushing politicians and citizens to come to grips with decades of injustice. And with Federal incentives coming out of Washington DC as a response, Americans are effectively pushing environmental change at the local, business, and federal levels in ways unimagined even five short years ago. And they’re doing it nationwide, together. In every community. And inspiring others to do the same.
Admittedly, there’s still much to do in America, and San Francisco in particular. The challenge is grand, and the potential rewards great for those environmental leaders seeking to shape a healthier, more sustainable world. If you can only join us in spirit, brilliant! But if you should come to San Francisco, know that we’re waiting with open arms, and encouraging you to wear flowers in your hair as you travel.