Our very relationship with materials is due for a transformation.    New changes --  in design approaches,  in civic policy expectation, and in global event practices -- can help to inspire this transformation.  Check out these innovation stories from the 2013 GreenBiz Forum in San Francisco.


Some Background...

Expectations in the climate community are focused on transportation and the built environment.  Meanwhile, lifecycle materials management is being revealed as able to outperform those sectors in terms of impact – not because transportation and the built environment are not big emissions contributors, but because the impact of materials is so great. This I learned at a webinar on climate action planning this morning, part of a dynamite series on the under-explored topic of materials management by the EPA's West Coast Forum on Climate and Materials.

While the climate impacts of materials have remained largely out of the conversation, that needs to change -- and now.  It is time that we VALUE materials, and begin seeing them both as the carbon-emitters and reusable earthly treasures that they are.  Today's innovation stories, from the 2013 GreenBiz Forum in San Francisco, describe just that.


Our Conversations...

Jill Savery - Sustainable America's Cup: A Smooth Partnership
THE INNOVATION: The 34th America’s Cup partners with the most sustainable city in North America.

Scott Hamlin - Looptworks: Upcycled from Excess
THE INNOVATION: Designing sportswear and more from exclusively pre-consumer waste.

Adam Wegener - TrashAmps: Reuse it for Music(R)
THE INNOVATION:  Designing a take-everywhere fun product that utilizes everyday trash.

In the coming months, watch for more InnovatingSMART conversations with folks we met at the Forum who are facilitating deep changes. From consumerism itself (that 20th century-invented economic lifeblood) to our infrastructure-usage models to a return to nature for our physical and social engineering ideas -- business as usual is changing. Stay tuned for more.


For past InnovatingSMART conversations in this series:
Mo'Data! Mo'Data! Mo'Data!

More from InnovatingSMART on GreenBiz people and events:
Risk, Resilience and Love: Lessons from Woodstock
On the VERGE of a SMARTer World




Watch as GreenBiz' own coverage of the 2013 Forum unfolds. Check out their microsite, or sign up for their newsletters.




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Sue Lebeck 

  Cool Block Platform Director

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