Saturday, October 20, 2012

Powering the Cloud: Big Energy in Data Centers

Many of us rely on the cloud far more than we know, and the convenience of information on demand regardless of location or device is bewitching. Few have gotten a chance to see what really makes the cloud tick. In this month's Wired, Steven Levy writes about his rare opportunity to visit several of Google's data centers, and learn about how they've been driving cost and eenrgy waste out of their business. It's a great read about one of the giants in an industry that consumes 1.5% of the eberhy used throughout the entire planet.

Enjoy "Google Throws Open Doors to Its Top-Secret Data Center."

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

The bottom line of green is still black!

We've been hearing more and more that, contrary to previous popular belief, adopting sustainability practices is good business. Now a Harvard Business Review blog post backs up that assertion. Because investors have increasingly demanded data, we have more to go by now than we did a decade ago, and the data present a clear picture:

"Resource efficient companies — those that use less energy and water and create less waste in generating a unit of revenue — tend to produce higher investment returns than their less resource-efficient rivals. ... Resource-efficient companies also display high levels of innovation and entrepreneurship, pushing core value metrics above the average large cap global business."

That sounds like a recipe for success!

Back in 1993, when I was in publishing, I worked on a book titled The Bottom Line of Green Is Black. Even then, a few people saw the benefits of going green, but it's taken a while for sustainability to spread on a larger scale. Now, it seems, more businesses are seeing that it actually makes sense financially -- and that they can do well by doing good.

So perhaps we can say now: Green is the new black!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Sustainability taking root in management agendas

A new MIT Sloan report brings good news for project managers interested in sustainability. The authors claim that sustainability is reaching a tipping point, where companies have made it a permanent part of their management agendas, as they find more and more that they profit from sustainable practices.

While there's still progress to be made in this direction, the trend is a positive one for our planet -- and, of course, for green project managers. With companies placing more emphasis on sustainability, it's a good time to incorporate it into your project management work. To learn more about how to do that, check out the online seminars being offered by Green Project Management.

And this new focus is also likely to result in more project management jobs related directly to sustainability. If you know of opportunities in this area, or have any thoughts on the subject, we'd love to hear from you -- enter your comments below!

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Green PM online seminar

If you missed our last Green Project Management seminar, here's your chance to learn more about the subject, in the comfort of your own home. Green Project Management is offering a 3-hour online seminar, coming up soon!

Sustainability in Project Management Workshop 

Attend Live Online  | 3 Hours | Only $99
Monday, September 10, 12 - 3:00PM EDT 

Can't make it?  Workshops are also being held Monday October 8, 12-3:00PM EDT, 
Monday, November 12, 12-3:00PM EDT, and are also available on request.
Learn more at

Until now, sustainability, project life cycles, and processes did not have a common convergence point, making it challenging to align them.  

By using PRiSM, a project methodology and toolset developed by GPM that incorporates ISO:14001 best practices and governance with project delivery, you will be able to weave sustainable methods into the fabric of projects, expanding your impact beyond scope and deliverables to five bottom lines that define the health of the organization as a whole. At the end of this workshop you have the knowledge to make a direct impact on your projects and ultimately on your organization.

At the end of this workshop you will be able to:
  • Define Sustainability in Project Management or "Green Project Management" 
  • Define P5, the five bottom lines of sustainability and project management
  • Define the differences between a green project and standard project management
  • Define what it takes to be a GPM
  • Understand how to develop a sustainability management plan
  • Understand how to plan risk using PESTLE
  • Understand the sustainability integrators to knowledge areas and process groups
Learn more on the Green PM site.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

PRiSM: A methodology for green project management

When we began planning our Green Project Management seminar series, one question often arose: What is green project management?

We’ve had a number of great seminars in the series so far – yet we’ve never really answered that question. This month, we finally got an answer.

Joel Carboni of Green Project Management (GPM) and Mark Reeson of QA Limited explained to a packed room how to use their PRiSM methodology to make any project green – not just those in fields directly related to sustainability.

Why green project management?

There’s a growing demand to integrate sustainability with business practices, but a lack of a methodology to do so.  And sustainability and project management have for the most part remained separate. Green Project Management’s goal is to change that.

In 2008, International Project Management Association VP Mary McKinley said, “The further development of the project management profession requires project managers to take responsibility for sustainability.” GPM is taking this to the next level by making that more than just a statement. They’re not asking to change the way project managers work – instead, they’re adding to existing project management methodologies.

Why the emphasis on sustainability for project managers? Because we can be agents of change on a large scale. And to do so, we must have readily available and easily applicable tools.

The P5

That’s where GPM comes in. Their focus is not on the deliverable itself but on the method by which it is delivered.

GPM uses a new approach to sustainability, P5, which goes beyond the well-known triple bottom line to assess 5 measurable elements of sustainability -- each of which is measured individually and also together as a complete package:
  1. Social sustainability: People. This relates to labor practices and decent work, human rights, society and customers, and behaving ethically. 
  2. Environmental sustainability: Planet. This is the area concerned with transport, energy, water, waste, and materials and resources.
  3. Economic sustainability: Profit. This area is already of interest to companies, since it’s all about return on investment and business agility.
  4. Product sustainability: Product. What’s important here, from a sustainability perspective, is the lifespan and servicing of the product.
  5. Process sustainability: Process. This key ingredient in sustainable project management involves looking at the maturity of processes, as well as their efficiency and fairness. 
The Sustainability Management Plan – green project management in action

How can we apply the P5 to a project? By using a Sustainability Management Plan (SMP), which assesses the impact of the project on all the P5 elements and gives each a score. A weighting score to shows how important each element is to the organization. And this results in an overall sustainability score.

The SMP details key performance indicators in each of the P5 areas and includes an environmental impact assessment, as well as a section on sustainability risk management.

The PRiSM methodology

The GPM methodology is known as PRiSM, or Projects Integrating Sustainable Methods. It incorporates not just the Sustainability Management Plan but also other helpful tools such as a Green Vendor Scorecard to rate each vendor in a number of areas, weighted depending on their importance to your project.

But what’s most important is that GPM encourages us to look at projects from a different angle, and shows how we can incorporate sustainability into any project, by considering how the project affects each of the P5 areas.

GPM aims to make sustainable project management simple, though it may not therefore be easy. They believe that sustainable project management can help us in these areas:
  • Managing in an integrated manner for all stakeholders – which involves getting stakeholders on board with being green.
  • Aligning social responsibility with corporate strategy.
  • Rationalizing harmony with economy, compliance, and ethical responsibilities.
  • Managing risks to brand and reputation.
  • Integrating eco-design into product and service offerings.

How to get involved

The best way for you to make a difference is by working to incorporate green project management in your own projects. If you’re concerned about objections being raised to this, check out the whitepaper Handling Objections for ideas on how to deal with those.

Green Project Management is working to get sustainability included in the PMI body of knowledge. If you agree that’s a good idea, consider signing this petition.

And we encourage you to visit the Green Project Management site and get involved in their LinkedIn group. GPM welcomes your input and wants to share their method. Working together, we can all ensure that incorporating sustainability in project management becomes the norm.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

How can we make the world a better place?

Oil use related to driving cars has led to profound economic, health, and environmental problems on our planet. One Bay Area company, Better Place, has a unique approach to helping solve those problems. At our May Green Project Management seminar, Peter Cooper of Better Place explained how the company is attempting to break oil’s monopoly on transportation -- by accelerating the adoption of electric vehicles.

The past year has brought more news about new electric cars, and early adopters now have several makes of cars to choose among. But most people aren’t early adopters. How do you convince those people to drive electric cars? Many concerns remain about price, battery range, and charging. Better Place is trying to take a situation that doesn’t currently serve most consumers and change it to something that does work.

The Better Place model

Currently, instead of going to the consumer, the electric vehicle (EV) universe is asking the consumer to come to it. Better Place is trying to shift this and to do something that doesn’t require consumers to change their behavior.

Their key is to separate the battery from the car, both physically and financially. This makes driving more affordable, convenient, and sustainable.

Batteries account for the high cost of EVs, but in Better Place’s model, the consumer buys the car and merely leases the battery. Better Place doesn’t produce cars but works with car manufacturers like Renault to produce cars that can all use the same battery. The price of these cars is now comparable to that of gas cars, and it’s expected to go down. Plus, since you're not buying the battery, you don’t have to deal with the car’s resale value decreasing when the battery degrades.

Range anxiety is eliminated with an infrastructure of charging stations that can also be used as battery-switch stations. Rather than having to wait for the battery to charge, drivers can switch their spent battery for a freshly charged one. In addition, the batteries are charged slowly in a cool environment, so they last longer to begin with (though drivers can charge the batteries at home, too). And as new batteries come on to the market, car owners get to upgrade to the better technology at no cost.

An important part of the Better Place infrastructure is their remote monitoring. A problem for EVs is that if the battery drains completely, it can be hard to keep it alive. The remote monitoring system monitors the battery power and allows for roadside assistance to be deployed if the battery is draining.

And the switching station knows when you’re coming and queues up a battery for you. So it takes about 5 minutes to go through a station, about a minute of which is the actual switch process.

As Better Place likes to explain it, in their model they are a service provider, like a cell phone company – and the consumer buys a plan to power their car as they would buy a cell phone plan.

The Better Place model is currently being implemented in several places around the world, including Australia and Hawaii. In Israel and Denmark, around 100,000 Renault cars are being deployed, with about 23 switch stations in Israel and 8 in Denmark.

You may be wondering when this will come to the Bay Area, where the company is headquartered. Better Place is looking at a pilot program for the area starting with some switch stations next year, and we might expect to see the cars here in a couple years. In the Bay Area, they’d need about 40 switch stations to support 100,000 cars.

Project management challenges and solutions

Change management is often a crucial part of project management, and implementing the Better Place model is no exception. Convincing people to make the change to their system requires a great deal of change management for both the industry and the consumer. People need to be convinced that the Better Place model works and will address the issues they now have with EVs – and that there’s even a reason to switch to EVs in the first place. In addition, governments need to be convinced there’s a benefit in adopting the model and supporting the necessary infrastructure.

The company has worked in areas where governments are willing to help with things like getting cheaper rent and good publicity. Then when they see that Better Place can execute, they are more willing to invest.

Each area has different needs, and therefore different motivations to promote EV adoption. Israel was motivated by the desire to decrease dependency on the oil that they get from their neighbors. Denmark, in contrast, is producing excess energy. Even Hawaii is producing excess wind energy at night, when demand is low. In places like this, the extra energy can be used at night for car charging, which avoids having to dump that energy.

Utilities in general can benefit from EVs storing intermittent energy. Car batteries can make up a virtual power plant, which can even be turned off when needed – another case where remote monitoring comes in handy.

In Australia, where gas prices are high – providing an excellent motivation to switch to EVs – Better Place worked to break the brand paradigm of people thinking their model works only in small countries or on islands. The right branding is a crucial element in adoption of the Better Place model.

To promote their brand in a way that will engage consumers, the company engages car companies, the media, construction, and big brands that touch lots of consumers. Engaging the consumers directly comes closer to launch, in the last year.

The adoption curve begins with technophiles, and then sustainability advocates. Then there’s a “chasm” – getting from early adopters into the first major segment of consumers. So they need to identify who those people are, and turn early adopters into advocates who can communicate with others and convince them to move to EVs. One example of a segment they would target is socially conscious, upwardly mobile, professional couples with children.

Of course, all of us can benefit from electric cars. Even those who don’t drive them will benefit from the cleaner air they make possible. But Better Place is doing a lot to make EVs more accessible to the general public so more of us can drive them – and I, for one, have been convinced by their excellent communication and change management. I look forward to the day when their cars and infrastructure are available in the Bay Area.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Green Project Management Course coming to San Francisco in August

If you're in the San Francisco Bay Area, you won't want to miss this great opportunity! Joel Carboni and Mark Reeson of Green Project Management have been taking their 4-day PRiSM Practitioner course around the world to great acclaim, and they're bringing it to San Francisco in August.
Get more info and sign up now on the Green PM site! PMI members get $100 off if you register by July 10. For information on the discount, contact Rosana Francescato.

A few excerpts:

PRiSM Practitioner is a four-day advanced level course unlike any other. In PRiSM Practitioner, participants are challenged in a case-study driven environment using our unique EnVex methodology. The  course is designed to prepare participants to use tools that integrate project and sustainability management and uses best practices and competencies derived from the PMI's PMBOK® Guide, APM Bok®, IPMA ICB® 3.0, and PRINCE2®.

Participants gain a working knowledge of the PRiSM delivery method, which includes:
  • Knowledge Areas and Process Groups 
  • Leadership vs. Management 
  • Stakeholder Management 
  • An adaptive Sustainability framework developed from the ISO:14001 including: 
  • Sustainability Management Plan development and implementation 
  • Environmental Impact Assessments 
  • Sustainable Procurement 
  • P5 Integration 
Key Differentiators of PRiSM Practitioner from other project management courses include:
  • Competencies derived from PMBoK, APM BoK, IPMA ICB,  
  • EnVex – An Andragogical approach to learning using real life projects and iterative – hands on approaches. 
  • Virtual project team scenarios 
  • The change of standard project life-cycle approach of Initiate/mandate to close/handoff to a Cradle to Grave mindset. 
Upon completion of training participants will be able to
  • Integrate Sustainability with Project Management 
  • Explain the differences between a green project and sustainability based project management 
  • Demonstrate working knowledge of the practical application of skills and techniques of PRiSM 
  • Manage to the P5 concept and to ensure the checklist of sustainability is managed throughout a business change or project 
  • Explain the benefits of added value through introducing sustainability processes 
  • How to develop and use a Project Sustainability Management Plan and other project specific tools 
  • Describe the basic principles of the sustainability sustainability project management processes and life-cycle phases 
  • Apply the tools and techniques to apply for the GPM® certification. 

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Get 8 PDUs and 40% discount on PRiSM Foundations eLearning Pilot

This in from Joel Carboni of Green PM -- looks like a great deal!

GPM Global has just finalized its 2013 PRiSM (Projects integrating Sustainable Methods) Foundations course material refresh and will be running a web-based pilot on July 2 and 3. Each class will accommodate 15 people on a first-come first-served basis and costs 40% less than the traditional classroom style course.

This is the perfect way to spend the two days before the 4th of July holiday! 

Attendees will gain a foundational working understanding of the practical application of skills and techniques centered on PRiSM, a sustainability-centered project delivery and governance methodology. Exercises and assignments will support the learning experience, to ensure that the new techniques are retained and immediately relevant.

At the end of the course participants will be able to:

- Define Sustainability in Project Management or "Green Project Management”  
- Define the differences between a green project and standard project management
- Define what it takes to be a GPM
- Define what it means to increase value through green processes
- Understand the PRiSM project delivery method
- Understand the five measurable bottom lines and how they pertain to project management
- Define the basic principles of the project management processes, phases, and knowledge areas from a sustainable viewpoint

This course is also available as an onsite one-day offering -- but with the online pilot, you will save %40!

Learn the practical application of Green Project Management® and the project delivery method. 

When: July 2 and 3, 8 am - noon Pacific Time.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Objection handling for green project managers

Green project managers often find themselves in the position of having to justify incorporating sustainability in their projects. You may find yourself trying to convince organizations that sustainability is in their interest, in the face of objections like:

  • It's not one of our current strategic objectives.
  • The benefits are intangible and the ROI is too low.
  • We're facing a lack of political will.
  • We can't afford it.
  • We're just too busy to deal with this.

The list goes on, and at times it may seem daunting trying to introduce sustainability as an integral part of project management.

But you're not alone -- there's help available!

In February of this year, a group of sustainability professionals gathered in Toronto and discussed these issues at a workshop, part of the Toronto Sustainability Speaker Series. Their excellent tips and recommendations can be found in this free discussion paper.

Check it out! And please share any tips and advice you may have from your own experience as a green project manager.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Free Green Project Management webinar

We just heard about an exciting opportunity to learn more about green PM!

The authors of Green Project Management, Rich Maltzman and Dave Shirley, will be hosting a free "lunch and learn" webinar on Green Project Management on May 16. (Note that it's lunch on the east coast and will be at 9:00 am Pacific Time.)

As noted in the webinar announcement:

"They will discuss 5 Key Assertions from their book –
  1. Doing the right thing helps the project team do things right. 
  2. Green PM helps better equip your team respond to project risks. 
  3. Green PM helps the project and the product of the project. 
  4. An environmental lens, including life cycle thinking, is a necessary part of a PM's toolbox. 
  5. Greenality, like quality, must be planned in, not bolted on 
And share 5 things you can do now to apply sustainability in your career and your projects.

Their book teaches project managers how to maximize resources and get the most out of limited budgets. It supplies proven techniques and best practices in green project management, including risk and opportunity assessments."

Don't miss this opportunity -- register here.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Promising benefits of West Coast clean economy

A recent report on the West Coast Clean Economy shows that the "clean economy" in Washington, Oregon, and California is growing and is of benefit to the economy. The findings have spurred action by the Pacific Coast Collaborative, which has created the West Coast Action Plan on Jobs. The goal is to speed the transition to a clean economy, hastening the attendant benefits of the greater resiliency and pay scales of clean economy jobs, plus the robust GDP growth they bring. For more, see this article in the Sustainable Business Forum.

What does this mean for green project management? Whether you practice green project management in a clean economy job or in a position not directly related to sustainability, this acknowledgment of the benefits of going green could seep into all areas. As project managers interested in sustainability, perhaps we could even say it's our responsibility to ensure that it does. One way or another, it's bound to bring positive attention to the area. I look forward to seeing the action plan on jobs come to fruition, and I hope the ideas behind it will permeate jobs in all areas.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Upcoming Green PM Seminars

We have an exciting lineup for the coming months. If you know of any great potential speakers, please contact us!

Here's what we have in the works:

May 19: Pete Cooper from Better Place

The benefits that cars have brought over the last century can’t be overstated. At the same time, though, related oil use has created profound economic, health, and environmental problems, which will get much worse as hundreds of millions in the developing world enter the middle class. The goal of Better Place is to break the monopoly oil has on transportation, by accelerating the adoption of electric vehicles.

Pete Cooper will tell us about how Better Place is enabling the mass-market adoption of electric cars through an innovative battery-switch model that makes driving electric cars more affordable, convenient, and sustainable than driving gasoline-powered cars. The company owns and operates a network of battery-switch stations and public/personal Charge Spots, along with the supply of batteries that power the cars, to provide drivers with instant range extension and the convenience to drive, switch, and go across an entire region. Where possible, Better Place uses renewable sources of energy to deliver fully zero-emissions driving. The World Economic Forum has named Better Place a “Global Growth Company Industry Shaper” for its innovative approach in advancing the global switch to electric cars.

June 16: Joe Serrano of TentMakers Inc.

TentMakers Inc. is a nonprofit organization that assists low- and moderate-income households with housing and economic development opportunities. They also help counties, cities, nonprofits, housing developers, and the public with housing and economic development activities.

At our June seminar, Joe Serrano will tell us about the Attainable and Sustainable Housing (ASH) Model, which is a combination of the FHA 203K loan program, Energy Efficient Mortgage, and Energy Upgrade California. He'll present some case studies of Tentmakers projects and explore some of the opportunities and constraints involved.

August 18: Joel Carboni of Green Project Management

By applying a framework of sustainable methods and personal adherence of environmental ethics to project management practices, project managers can serve as agents of change by decoupling environmental degradation and economic growth. The mission of Green Project Management (GPM) is to be the catalyst in evolving the discipline to enable organizations to improve the construct and delivery of goods and services without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.

Joel Carboni of GPM will share his organization's PRiSM methodology for making sustainability an integral part of project management. GPM has been taking their courses in green project management around the world to great acclaim, and we're excited to have him share their insights with us!

Seminar series details

The Green Project Management Seminar Series is co-sponsored by Keller Graduate School and the Project Management Institute San Francisco Bay Area Chapter. The seminars are held on the third Saturday of each month from 9:00 am to 12:00 noon PDT, at Keller Graduate School’s Daly City location. For details and registration information, visit the PMI SF Bay Area Chapter website at or (Upcoming seminars may not be there yet, but we'll get the listings in place soon!)

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Spring of Sustainability -- FREE online seminars!

Spring is just beginning, and with it comes the Spring of Sustainability, a 3-month series of virtual and live events designed to empower us all to "connect, collaborate, and create a sustainable community and world."

The series, produced by The Shift Network and the Sustainable World Coalition, is packed with luminaries in all areas of sustainable living, from Van Jones to Bill McKibben to Frances Moore Lappe -- and others too numerous to list here.

You can call in and listen live on weekdays at noon Pacific Time, or you can access recordings later.

What do the series producers expect you'l get out of attending? In their words, you can:

  • Transform fear and frustration into hope and actions you can contribute directly to creating a sustainable world for all beings 
  • Learn fun, inspiring ways you can engage your family, friends, neighbors and coworkers in creating a healthy and sustainable community 
  • Discover why new systems rooted in justice and sustainability principles are the only viable solution for our planet 
  • Network and collaborate with other passionate people and organizations on sustainable initiatives – and help create a thriving planet 
  • Get the latest cutting-edge insights into green building, green business, green living, renewable energy sources, wildlife preservation and climate change 
  • Understand the role of culture and social will in creating a paradigm shift in economic, political, and social systems that are destroying the planet 
  • ...And more

Sounds like a good way to get inspired to continue promoting sustainability in all our projects, whether they're at work or in the rest of our lives.

For more information and to register (free!), see

Wednesday, March 7, 2012


Clean Energy and Global Development Community,

I just got word of an really interesting event this coming Monday, 12 March.

Drew Sloan, Army Veteran and Rachel Kleinfeld, Truman National Security Project's CEO, will be at the Marines' Memorial Club in San Francisco to discuss their recent book: "Let There Be Light."

Providing electricity to the unlit and unstable parts of the globe is crucial to jump-starting development, improving the environment, and stabilizing fragile states that ferment many of today's security threats. Let There Be Light shows the failures of centralized electricity to meet these challenges—and describes how distributed, renewable energy such as solar and wind power can work. But, Kleinfeld and Sloan argue, it is not enough to harness the power of the elements. To scale, distributed energy must harness the power of the market. Taking on the major challenges that have impeded distributed energy's success, this book describes the roles development donors, social entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, the military, and the business world can play to make lighting the developing world a reality.

Rachel is the founding CEO of the Truman National Security Project. Named one of the Top 40 Political Leaders by Time Magazine, Rachel appears regularly on national radio and television. Her passion lies in issues that fall along the seams of national security, human security, and development. She has written on building the rule of law in weak states, bioterrorism, energy, and a host of national security issues. Rachel has worked in microfinance in India, served as an election monitor in Pakistan and Bangladesh, and consulted for the World Bank, OECD, EU, and multiple private organizations on building the rule of law, work that she continues as a non-resident Associate at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. She serves as a founding member of the State Department's Foreign Affairs Policy Board, which provides the Secretary and other senior State Department officials with foreign policy guidance.
Rachel received her D.Phil and M.Phil from Oxford University, which she attended as a Rhodes Scholar, and holds a B.A. from Yale University. She grew up in a log house on a dirt road in Fairbanks, Alaska, which has one of the world's largest batteries backing up an electricity grid phone to blackouts.

Drew currently works in the Client Solutions Department of the energy efficiency company, OPower. Prior to this, he spent five years in the United States Army, where he served in Afghanistan, was wounded, and after convalescing at Walter Reed, returned to active duty and subsequently deployed to Iraq as the aide-de-camp for a brigadier general. He was awarded two bronze stars for meritorious service and a purple heart. Since departing the military he has worked at both Rocky Mountain Institute under the direct tutelage of Amory Lovins as well and in the Commercialization Office at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL).
Drew holds a Bachelor's of Science in History from the United States Military Academy at West Point as well as an MBA from Harvard Business School and an MPA from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government.

For more information, please visit

Where: Marines' Memorial Club and Hotel | 609 Sutter Street (@ Mason St), San Francisco, CA
When: 12 March, Registration at 5:30 pm | Program at 6:00-7:00 pm

Monday, March 5, 2012

It's back: FREE Sustainability / Construction / Project Management Symposium

We have a new date for this exciting symposium! Be DOUBLE GREEN for St Patrick's Day!

Saturday, March 17, 2012 from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM (PT)
Oakland, CA

The Project Management Institute San Francisco Bay Area Chapter, in conjunction with The Green Science Academy and US Green Building Council Northern California Chapter, will host its second symposium on sustainability, construction, and project management at DeVry University Keller Graduate School of Oakland.

This event will provide you with a great opportunity to hear leaders in the field speak about current thinking on green building/sustainability as well as a chance to network with individuals from a wide variety of green companies and gain actionable information for your job search or career transition.

With four exciting knowledge tracks, this symposium will help you learn about energy efficiency and renewable energy in the built environment; managing your business’ waste stream; and the slow food and slow money movements. In the opening and closing plenary sessions, you’ll also hear about LEED rating system updates planned for 2012 and 2013, and the vital role advocacy plays in advancing the green building industry through education, awareness, and sharing research to influence policy at the national, state, and local levels.

Admission is free, courtesy of the symposium host, DeVry University Keller Graduate School of Oakland. However, space is limited to the first 180 attendees, so register now to lock in your spot!

Sponsorship opportunities are available. For details, contact

The DeVry University campus is just one block from Oakland’s 12th Street BART station, at 505 14th Street, Oakland. Transportation, parking, and food are the responsibility of the attendee.

Click Here To Register

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

PG&E's Pacific Energy Center presents "Truck Farm: A Screening and Conversation with Director Ian Cheney and Mei Ling Hui of San Francisco Urban Agriculture Alliance."

PG&E recently announced a March 1st 2012 screening of the 45 minute short film "Truck Farm", a unique project that transformed an old pick-up truck into a traveling 20-member CSA enterprise. Using green-roof technology, lightweight soil and heirloom seeds, filmmakers Ian Cheney and Curt Ellis transformed granddad's '86 Dodge half-ton into a farm on wheels. They planted between the wheel wells with arugula and tomatoes, parked the truck on a Brooklyn street, and waited for sun and rain to work their charms. When the first sprouts came up, Truck Farm ( was born. Subscribers received deliveries of produce, arriving via the mobile farm itself. Come and hear from the folks who made this happen. The film also covers urban farming techniques and efforts in New York.

Mei Ling Hui of San Francisco's Department of the Environment will discuss her and San Francisco Urban Agriculture Alliance (SFUAA) efforts to promote urban agriculture and forestry. The San Francisco Urban Agriculture Alliance (SFUAA) promotes the growing of food within San Francisco and the associated goals of our member organizations, through advocacy, education, and grassroots action. SFUAA pursues its mission by leveraging the strengths of its members, from backyard farmers to social justice organizations, both within the alliance and in collaboration with outside organizations and governmental agencies.

"Truck Farm: A Screening and Conversation with Director Ian Cheney and Mei Ling Hui of San Francisco Urban Agriculture Alliance" will be held at PG&E's Pacific Energy Center, 851 Howard Street, San Francisco, CA (near Powell Street BART/MUNI).
Date: Thursday, March 1, 2012
Time: 6:30 pm to 8:00 pm (light refreshments at 6:00pm)
Cost: Free
Register at

Sunday, February 12, 2012

The state of green business

The State of Green Business Report is out for 2012 -- and it contains both good and bad news. Surprisingly, the report finds a "slowing of momentum -- or even backwards motion, in some cases -- on some of the indicators. Among the downgraded topics include investments in clean technology innovations, overall energy intensity, certifications of LEED buildings, and paper use and recycling." On the bright side, businesses are continuing to set ambitious environmental goals and to dedicate resources toward meeting those goals.

What's your experience of the state of green business as we proceed into 2012? We'd like to hear from you!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Sustainability at the California Academy of Sciences

We're excited about our next Green PM Seminar, coming up on Saturday, February 18! Our speaker is Hershow Al-Barazi, Building Systems Project Manager at the California Academy of Sciences.

Sustainability is often defined as meeting current human needs without endangering our descendants.

The California Academy of Sciences' mission to explore, explain, and protect the natural world compels the Academy to engage in scientific research relevant to sustainability, to raise public awareness about these urgent problems, and to minimize its own environmental impact. The Academy's green building signifies its commitment to sustainability. The culture and internal practices mirror that commitment in the areas of energy, water, waste management, transportation, purchasing, and food. Academy programs highlight the living world and its connection to the changing global environment.

As an organization, California Academy of Sciences is unique as the building that it sits in. It is a building that houses an Aquarium, Planetarium, an indoor Rainforest, Natural History Museum, Café and Restaurant, Research Laboratories, and millions of specimens in its Collections. The diversity of activities that occur within the Academy's walls provide significant challenges and a wealth of opportunities when thinking in terms of sustainable practices.

So join us on February 18 to hear all about this fascinating institution and building.

To register:


Seminar series details:

The Green Project Management seminars are held at the Keller Graduate School's Daly City location from 9:00 am to 12:00 noon PDT on the third Saturday of each month. For more details and to register, visit the Project Management Institute San Francisco Bay Area Chapter website at or These events are co-sponsored by the Keller Graduate School Sustainable Management MBA Program.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

The triple bottom line and project managers

Do you think project managers should be involved with a company's triple bottom line? While a majority of companies think sustainability is necessary to their competitiveness, very few have a clear road map for getting there. Perhaps project managers can help measure and have an impact on an organization's triple bottom line. You can read more about this in a post on -- check it out!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Should project managers incorporate green practices in our projects?

As project managers, we often don't have the authority to decide on our own whether to incorporate green practices into a project. We must generally abide by the requirements of our customers. But we can certainly make suggestions about how to run a project more sustainably. In many cases, that will save the customer those most valuable resources, time and money.

As we've noted before in this blog, project management is already concerned with reducing costs, increasing value, and protecting scarce resources. So it's not really a stretch to try to make our projects more sustainable.

What do you think? Should project managers incorporate green practices in their projects? Another project management blogger has written on this subject and would like to hear your point of view. So check out his article, and if you're so inclined, add your voice to the discussion.

You'll also find lively discussions on this and related topics in the Green PM group on LinkedIn.

If you find that you're passionate about sustainability being part of project management, you might even consider signing this petition. The petition asks that PMI consider sustainability thinking when updating the PMBOK Guide, as well as when making any changes to the PMI Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Sustainability / Construction / Project Management Symposium

NOTE: This symposium has been postponed -- stay tuned for a new date!

Saturday, January 28, 2012 from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM (PT)
Oakland, CA

Get Your GREEN On!!

The Project Management Institute San Francisco Bay Area Chapter, in conjunction with The Green Science Academy and US Green Building Council Northern California Chapter, will host its second symposium on sustainability, construction, and project management at DeVry University Keller Graduate School of Oakland.

This event will provide you with a great opportunity to hear leaders in the field speak about current thinking on green building/sustainability as well as a chance to network with individuals from a wide variety of green companies and gain actionable information for your job search or career transition.

With four exciting knowledge tracks, this symposium will help you learn about energy efficiency and renewable energy in the built environment; managing your business’ waste stream; and the slow food and slow money movements. In the opening and closing plenary sessions, you’ll also hear about LEED rating system updates planned for 2012 and 2013, and the vital role advocacy plays in advancing the green building industry through education, awareness, and sharing research to influence policy at the national, state, and local levels.

Admission is free, courtesy of the symposium host, DeVry University Keller Graduate School of Oakland. However, space is limited to the first 180 attendees, so register now to lock in your spot!

Sponsorship opportunities are available. Contact for details.

The DeVry University campus is just one block from Oakland’s 12th Street BART station, at 505 14th Street, Oakland. Transportation, parking, and food are the responsibility of the attendee.

Click Here To Register