Honorable Jon Porter,
Former Congressman, United States House of Representatives, President & CEO,
Q. What would you consider the biggest urban challenge municipalities is facing when it comes to urban sustainability and why?
The biggest challenge, as I see it, is the ability of a municipality to refit an urban environment to become sustainable. These might include funding limitations, lack of necessary experts, or existing infrastructure. For example, in some cases urban structures would not allow you to create a more efficient public transportation system, like an underground metro, that would decrease the number of cars, reduce carbon dioxide emissions, and therefore make the municipality more sustainable.
Q. Which sustainable strategies/activities is your organization implementing for the future and why are you doing so?
At PGS, we believe in a healthier and cleaner environment to leave for future generations. On a local level, we occupy offices in Washington DC in a LEEd accredited building where we recycle our trash, use sensor lighting, reduced mercury content in building lamps, use of 90% sustainable cleaning products and materials, and cutting air conditioning on weekends.
On a business level, we promote and represent firms that offer innovative solutions for clean energy. Our clients produce renewable biodiesel fuels, they engineer solar ponds that have a minimal effect on the environment while producing baseload power, and they create waste recycling processes that use fewer resources than other methods.
Q. What are you looking to learn from the Future Cities Conference?
I look forward to be part of this event and share my perspective, but also learn from fellow participants on the latest sustainable techniques, solutions , and best practices from their diverse experiences.