“You need to know where to look to understand what those dynamics are, what the physics of that movement of the puck is,” says Gil Friend, Chair of Natural Logic, Inc. and Founder of Critical Path Capital. Reflecting on Wayne Gretzky’s classic wisdom about adjusting to the future, in the above interview, Friend suggests that planners and other city government officials need to understand the structural changes that need to be made to ensure a more sustainable future for their respective communities.
He points out that organizational structures that separate related activities, such as transportation and land-use, are often barriers in the implementation of holistic solutions for tackling challenges around things such as energy efficiency and waste reduction. Solutions will require finding common ground in a world where needs vary greatly from individual to individual.
Friend touches upon the importance of better capital utilization to create a more sustainable lifestyle. He suggests vehicles (particularly individually owned) as being ripe for improvement in terms of utilization; greater utilization could lead to reduced environmental impact. And with new form factors and capabilities, allowed by electrification and computer power, it is easier to create a platform that delivers multiple uses, such as the Dannar MPS (see this earlier video for an overview), which was on display at ProspectSV’s Impact and Innovation Summit.
A recent Wired opinion (subscription required) piece argues that the rise of the smartphone and the resulting use of apps to replace single-use devices (e.g. flashlight, camera, etc.) has led to a reduced environmental impact from packaging to energy consumption. It could be a good pointer to the changes we could see in transportation, if correctly designed.
And speaking of transportation, it was appropriate that the above interview took place in one of the quiet disruptors that are being seen, but not so much heard, from the mountains of Utah to the streets of Chicago an electric bus from Bay Area-based Proterra (see an earlier interview with Proterra CEO, Ryan Popple here).