Friday, February 19, 2010

Clean Technology- The future of energy

"Environmental innovation is a good business strategy in the current scenario," said Kirk Hourdajian,Project Manager at the Environment Defense Fund, at the Duke Conference on Sustainable Business and Social Impact held at the Fuqua School of Business on the 17th of February.

This conference aimed at promoting social and environmental sustainability in all industry sectors, and explored the most relevant questions on sustainability with the people on the frontlines of social innovation and business. The conference featured executives, scientists and researchers from organizations like IDEO, GreenTeamUSA, Mars Inc., Ogilvy, groSolar and Deloitte, among others.

In the session 'CleanTech: Make It, Fund It', Blake Clifton, Principal of Abundant Power, Scott Starr, Founder of groSolar and Kirk Hourdajian discussed the current state of clean technology, and talked about how the leading industry organizations and non-profits are driving market forces by driving clean technology.

"A 200 square mile area in the deserts of Arizona would be able to supply the entire electricity requirement of the United States for one year," said Starr, referring to the huge potential of solar energy.

Clifton highlighted the importance of government investments in nurturing the pet sustainability projects from conceptualization to completion. "The government involvement has to be huge. If the government doesn't give a 30% grant, then one cannot develop that technology. Infrastructure needs to be there to meet energy."

Other sessions included discussions about designing and engineering social impact, green as the new color of marketing, sustainable investments and strategies for climate change in the new world.

The Duke Conference of Sustainable Business and Social Impact was organized by the Duke MBA Net Impact Gold Chapter.