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Opinion: Green is a process. Some think circular, but can say positive green feedback?
Trigger warning: Accountants are gently mocked in this blog.
Positive feedback can mean different things to different people - much like the English word "theory" is sometimes confused with the scientific term "theory". Positive feedback can be a great blog comment, but "positive feedback" is also a science thing. Context is critical; X makes more Y which makes more of X - positive feedback. Does it sound strange when I say that anthropomorphic global warming is a positive feedback? That's why I don't say that.
Compared to some dirty* processes used hundreds of years ago, our modern processes are becoming more "circular", greener. We need to create green processes to innovate our green positively. More businesses are now adopting a more "circular philosophy". I remember accountants giggling about LEAN manufacturing in the 2000's, but seems they all lost their jobs, but have all been retrained with LEAN thinking, and kindly told not to stop giggling so much at designers, engineers, and doctors of mathematics!
Some talk of a circular economy, cradle to cradle, sustainable** processes, the list goes on. As the complexity of nature reveals itself, sometimes stealing ideas from nature is the best place to start a design. Sometimes nature can teach us faster than starting from basic principles, but always remember to also steal scientific theory from any great scientist of your choosing - it's totally legal too. Fools!
Using LEAN thinking to green a process, we can leverage what nature teaches us and apply it to some of our older, more dirty processes. I steal ideas from nature all the time. Shhh! Our current challenge is to green our processes! When we create a new design project, we can apply this Green-LEAN thinking and impact our design for the greener, and if done correctly also profitably.
Looking back, we can see many polluted mining sites in Canada. If "they" knew what we knew now, would "they" have used a dirty process or a green process? There are hundreds of toxic sites and now even entire toxic lakes - a new toxic legacy from The Stephen Harper Government. Old manufacturing sites open and then shuttered leaving toxic legacies. Today's planning needs to understand all the big impacts and plan big accordingly. A 6-Sigma validation process for pipeline safety in Canada would certainly be some positive green feedback.
As we grow innovation in Canada on climate change and environmental law, we need to look at some of our legacy issues and focus hard on solving these problems as well. This practice would shift Canada towards a leadership position and provide the tools to help clean dirty sites globally. Trash into treasure!
Canada is a mining and resource leader, we now must evolve into a green mining and green resource leader. There are plenty of messes, so let's get paid to clean them up! Positive green feedback!
* - you know, like dirty.
**- without an operational green manufacturing system, nothing is superduper***-sustainable.