When I first met TERRY TAMMINEN, he was living on a houseboat in the Marina and filling a position he’d founded as the first Santa Monica Baykeeper. No too long before that, he had been running a pool services company. And not too long after, he was Secretary of the California EPA.
Tamminen has reinvented himself successfully in several very different worlds — business, government, non-profit, foundation, from the grassroots to the halls of power. All of this for a long time now to achieve a sound and healthy relationship between society and the environment. He pursues that consistent vision with whatever works.
We’ll talk about the ideas in his book, CRACKING THE CARBON CODE: The Key to Sustainable Profits in the New Economy – which is very much a plan of action for companies who figure out that reducing carbon emissions reduces waste and is therefore good for the bottom line. He’ll tell stories of companies that have made or saved money by cutting carbon.
How has he been able to move things forward through politics and government in an era when so little seems to get done? Bottom line, are we moving fast enough? If not, how do we integrate all these different players to accelerate movement in the right direction?
I seldom interview writers of fiction, but the debut novel THE AGE OF MIRACLES got my attention. It’s being heavily promoted as one of THE books of the summer. Enough so that I read the first couple of pages and I really like the writing. It’s about how one family in Southern California responds to a global crisis, the slowing of the earth, and the lengthening of days and nights. The writer, KAREN THOMPSON WALKER joins me for a delightful interview.
Pulitzer-prize winning author Ed Humes has a new book -- FORCE OF NATURE: The Unlikely Story of Wal-Mart's Green Revolution -- that starts with the same sort of skepticism, asks some of the same questions, and ends up delivering a lot of good news.
He reports that Wal-Mart has embraced an unprecedented green makeover, which is now spreading worldwide. The retail giant is leveraging the power of 200 million weekly customers to drive waste, toxins, and carbon emissions out of its stores and products. Neither an act of charity nor an empty greenwash, Wal-Mart's green move reflects a simple, compelling philosophy: that the most sustainable, clean, energy-efficient, and waste-free company will beat its competitors every time. Not just in some distant, Utopian future but today.
MARK HERTSGAARD, a fellow of The Open Society Institute, The Nation's environment correspondent, covers climate change for Vanity Fair, Time and Die Zeit and has written for many of the world's leading newspapers and magazines. He is the author of the highly acclaimed study of the media during the Reagan years, On Bended Knee, as well as Earth Odyssey; A Day in the Life: The Music and Artistry of the Beatles; The Eagle's Shadow, and his newest, HOT: Living Through the Next 50 Years on Earth.
JOHN WARNER and Paul Anastas are the founders of green chemistry and co-authors of Green Chemistry: Theory and Practice, in which, they establish 12 guiding principles for chemists. In 1996 Warner left a lucrative job at Polaroid to found the nation's first doctoral program in green chemistry, and in 2007 he founded Warner Babcock Institute for Green Chemistry, an innovation incubator, in Wilmington, Mass.
Green Chemistry is a revolutionary approach to the way that products are made; it is a science that aims to reduce or eliminate the use and/or generation of hazardous substances in the design phase of materials development. It requires an inventive and interdisciplinary view of material and product design. Green Chemistry follows the principle that it is better to consider waste prevention options during the design and development phase than to dispose or treat waste after a process or material has been developed.