By ericajacobs on Jan 11, 2008
Yesterday, Sun hosted a really inspiring -- and different -- event called OpenEco EnergyCamp. The event featured eco thought leaders Hunter Lovins, author of "Natural Capitalism;" Adam Werbach, who was the youngest ever president of the Sierra Club and now is helping Wal-mart become more green with his firm Act Now; and acclaimed authors Ted Nordhaus and Michael Shellenberger.
The EnergyCamp was held in an "unconference" format, which means it's more open and audience-driven than the typical conference.
Dave Douglas, Sun's VP of Eco Responsibility, moderated the "open session," sort of like a panel with Lovins, Werbach, Shellenberger and Nordhaus, except that he encouraged the audience to get involved with comments and ideas at the very beginning rather than wait for a Q&A. They took him up on it, and discussion was lively and interesting. One hotly debated topic was whether more technology is actually needed to reduce GHGs or whether we can get there by making better use of what we currently have (Lovins' position). Adam Werbach had some intriguing things to say about "killing all the experts," the idea being that everyone in the room is an expert and shouldn't wait for the answers to come others.
The audience then made a list of the breakout sessions they wanted to develop and we split up into groups. Michael Shellenberger and Ted Nordhaus (above L-R) led a session, and there were dozens more on topics like engaging Gen Y on the environment and forming an Eco team at a large company. Tribeca Films also held a screening of some short films.
The EnergyCamp was meant to also heighten awareness about OpenEco.org, the first online community for organizations to calculate, compare and reduce their carbon -- sort of like Facebook for environmental managers. The event itself reflects Sun's and OpenEco.org's philosophy about opensourcing issues and finding solutions as a community.
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