Articles - January, 2007

Eco-Advantage: Green to Gold–the Business Case

Green_to_gold_1 One of my goals for the new year is to flaunt the business case for sustainability.  When you add that to the fact that I’ve seen several blogs talk about reading 1 book/month (as a New Year’s Resolution), you get a nasty combination: my resolution + your resolution = reading Green to Gold: How Smart Companies Use Environmental Strategy to Innovate, Create Value, and Building Competitive Advantage.  As a caveat, however, I haven’t read the book yet, I’ve only thumbed through the pages and table of contents.  (I couldn’t get it before Christmas because that’s when you shop for other people, but now, the copies are all gone and I’m waiting).  The book was written by Dan Esty + Andrew Winston and is getting considerable attention in business circles.  The authors also have a blog called Eco-Advantage that I’ve been reading since November or so.  It’s good.  But here’s the gist, if you need a book to read, give it a shot. 

Fiona Harvey of Financial Times recommended Green to Gold in her list of books designed "to help the entrepreneur take advantage of [the green trend]."  I’ll leave it up to you to determine whether this is a trend.  Here’s what she said: "The business reader may have more luck with Green to Gold, a manual on how to turn your company into an eco-success, catching the current wave of consumer and government interest in saving the world from environmental catastrophe."  There you go, what’s your review??

Jetson Green 2007: Blog Goals

Fireworks

I agree with Siel that goals should be SMART.  Inspired by Geekwhat (caution: bust image), I’ve decided to broadcast three goals I have for Jetson Green.  They say (I don’t know who exactly, but…), "A goal is not a goal until it is written down," so blogging these should keep me accountable.  Here we go. 

  1. Leave 5 comments a day elsewhere.
  2. Reach the 100,000 total new visitors mark (currently at +14,000 total), need to get about 1,700 new visits a week (versus my current 1,100).
  3. Publish 2 articles in print magazines. 

Aspirational?  Yes.  Doable?  Yes.  Although I have one concern.  I don’t think the comments goal is measurable, but I will keep a running tab in my notes.  The other two goals are measurable and all three goals must be performed by year end.  For #2 + #3, I rely on the generosity of others; for example, if people stop visiting, then I will never reach 100,000 new visitors. 

What am I going to do to make it happen?  Keep generating quality, rich, noteworthy, focused content.  Keep tweaking the site based upon visits, site statistics, and reader feedback.  Keep blogging daily.  And enjoy every minute of it.

Jetson Green 2007: Flaunt the Business Case for Green Real Estate

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When I say "green real estate," I’m referring to all aspects of the real estate business.  That includes the following jobs:  developer, owner, third-party manager, agent, broker, investor, architect, contractor, sub-contractor, etc.  There is a business case for the greening of real estate, but here are some preliminary considerations. 

First, "green building" is not only about energy and water efficiency.  It must be remembered that "green building" includes the concepts of indoor air quality and environmental impact.  These three concepts can overlap, but they are distinct.  Each concept can bring profitability in different ways.  Lloyd Alter blogged about this concept (specifically on "ethical design") today on TreeHugger. 

Second, "greenwashing" is a pejorative term for companies that are trying to realize value from sustainability when their products, processes, or services do not deserve the green emphasis.  It’s free loading.  It’s disingenuous.  It’s deceptive.  And it’s counter-productive.  To make matters worse, public opinion will draw the line between greenwashing and green marketing, so companies must tread water honestly. 

It’s my personal goal for 2007 to flaunt the business case for sustainable real estate.  Here are a couple good examples from 2006. 

  • Ex 1: Adobe created value by greening their existing building. 
  • Ex 2: Ecobroker provides a way for agents to differentiate themselves in a competitive market. 
  • Ex 3: New Resource Bank is a case study in efficient market positioning as a niche bank. 

The opportunities exist for companies that want to make a difference and still remain committed to profitability; Jetson Green will remain committed to exposing and documenting those cases. 

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