115: Sandy Reisky, part 2: A Superbowl Ad to reduce consumption (transcript)

January 8, 2019 by Dani Mihaleva
in Podcast

Sandy Reisky

Sandy’s first conversation got a lot of extra lessons because, drum roll please, Leonardo Di Caprio’s foundation tweeted about it. So we’re getting a lot more attention, especially Sandy. Please watch the video if you haven’t watch it from the first one of The New Face of Clean Energy that Sandy and his non-profit made. And we talk about the origin of the video. It’s a new way of looking at solar. It’s about freedom, independence, creating jobs. The guy in the video is a veteran and the guy playing him is a veteran and more important than the result of the video is something you get in this podcast which is the view and the vision that drove the creating of the video that came from Sandy and that’s what you get to hear is what got that started in the first place. Then we go on to talk about more expert insider views on clean energy, solar, wind, wave, energy because Sandy’s right in the middle of it, he’s at the forefront of it. It’s a view that you’re just not going to get any of the places and of course there’s also Sandy’s personal challenge of not eating beef. So we’ll get to hear how that goes.


Joshua: Welcome to the Leadership and the Environment podcast. This is Joshua Spodek. I am here with Sandy Reisky. How are you?

Sandy: Hey, I’m doing great, Josh. Thanks.

Joshua: So when last we spoke we were about to talk about the video which I hope the people who are listening, I hope that they’ve watched it. If they haven’t, I don’t know if they should watch it right now or watch it afterward. And also, you took on a personal challenge and I’m really curious about both. Do you have a preference for which one you want to talk about first?

Sandy: I don’t. I follow your lead.

Joshua: So let’s go with… I’ve been struggling with this one. Let’s go with the video because I’ve known about that longer and that’s where we left off. So when we met before I think I mentioned this last time or when we met in person when I was down in Charlottesville we were both asking each other is anyone doing this and no one is. How did you come to do what you’re doing? How did you come to say… What I see in the video is what are the values going forward, what motivates people, what does this tap into. And it’s not doom and gloom. You know I’m sure you know the science but it’s not like here’s all the science. I’m a veteran. I’m someone who cares about my community. And how did you come up with it? Where did it come from?

Sandy: You know it was on a Sunday morning and I just sort of wrote the script four years ago and it was after just a lot of thought around this idea that… I’ve been in the generating side trying to you know add clean energy to the grid for so long and see on the consumer side there’s these great opportunities now to actually act on your energy awareness or your willingness to lower your emissions, desire to lower your emissions now you can be satisfied with you know new products like LED lights or solar panels or electric cars. And what struck me then and still continues to amaze me is that people have the opportunity to learn about these products, buy them, implement them in their lives and they’re going see that you’re saving money and really the quality of the ride in an electric car is you know as good or better than a conventional car. Solar panels just sit on your roof. They really, once they’re up there you don’t think about them again really.

Joshua: Even then you could have written a script that said what you just said which is factually correct but not particularly motivating and you know Leadership and the Environment to me the leadership was missing but you didn’t just say what you just said. You characterized it with someone… And no one else is doing it for you just to say, “I just wrote it.” I feel like there’s a background, a perspective that came over time or somehow.

Sandy: That’s right and that’s a great question, that’s very fair. So I think what I gave you was the thesis, the things I saw and then the problem became how do we communicate this to people in a way that they’re going to not just reject it out of hand. I think sometimes if you talk about climate, some people are just going to turn off, they’re not going to listen. So I really wanted to use a speaker and in this case it’s a guy you know who is in the armed forces, he had served in the Gulf War. That’s authentic. When we were interviewing people, auditioning them, that’s the only type of people we auditioned. So the messenger was really important and then the way the message was delivered also, I think, was something I paid a lot of attention too that you know he had the solar panels on his roof. You know he was saving money and he’s producing more than he uses. The electric cars, he’s saving money there and it’s more convenient, he doesn’t go to gas stations anymore. So I was trying to hit the buttons of you know you’re going to save money, it’s going to be convenient. And here’s an authentic person speaking to you about how his life has changed since he’s gotten back from the Gulf War. And then the surprise in it is that it turns out he’s actually working in the business and that introduces the themes of you know that solar is a job creator and you know that he makes the point then about resilience and freedom and independence that you get when you generate your own electricity. So it was really exciting to film it. It was really extraordinary to be on set for… We did it for I think it was a two-day shoot. This was really neat.

Joshua: So the guy who played the role was really playing himself.

Sandy: Yes.

Joshua: And when you wrote the script were you drawing on people in your life or was it an [unintelligible] of just people who you knew of?

Sandy: I had read some research around the types of people that people trust for messaging and really that helped write it. I thought that of all people somebody from the armed services who had served would be a very credible spokesman to talk about energy. If you’re talking about your everyday guy, that struck me as a really strong messenger.

Joshua: And the big question that I keep coming up with is why aren’t more people doing it? I don’t know if you can answer that because you’re not the other people.

Sandy: That’s right.

Joshua: Maybe it’s just the time has come and we passed some sort of a milestone. Any thoughts on your part of why isn’t there more of this?

Sandy: Well, you know I started Generation 180 about coming up on two years now and I’ve talked to a lot of nonprofits about the type of work they do and a lot of them when they come to the topic of changing people’s minds and changing behavior they tend to land on the side of “We need to get people to be politically active. We need them to vote. We need to engage them to basically bring the right people into office.” And they’re scared of what it takes to actually change behavior. Like what we’re trying to do and the reason we believe it will work is we think that something has changed. The availability of real products for people that are going to be buying anyway and people will be confronted by the energy awareness once they put solar on their roof. They’ll think more about the energy in their house and that type of thing. So on the one hand, I think there’s a conventional wisdom among the biggest funders of nonprofits that these are the big foundations, that behavior changes potentially a bad investment and it’s better just to try and get people to vote and then we’ll change regulations and then you know businesses will follow and that type of thing. And this is a very broad statement. I don’t know if it’s the answer but it is a pretty big risk. You’re making a pretty big investment to film things like this. So I think those folks maybe just have had other priorities until now.

Joshua: Well, everyone who is listening to this watch it and then send it to your friends and let’s get this to go viral. I mean it reads like a Super Bowl spot and hopefully it will become one. And I am also trying to think of did you make it with the goal or do you make it like this has to be said and I want to see what happens when it happens?

Sandy: I did. My goal is that one day it would be a Super Bowl ad and that’s a pretty big budget item. I’m not sure if we crowdsource something like that or if another foundation you know sees it and says, “Yeah, that’s perfect for the Super Bowl.” but that’s why only you know it’s just under a minute and it’s not intended to be for a very broad audience.

Joshua: Yes. I think the route is meeting someone at a network and getting it’s like a PSA, public service announcement, somehow and that way it does not you know because I think it’s a message that…Well, I guess it could be political from some people’s perspective but to me it’s like I buy into it and certainly I find it very, very compelling. And I keep calling it The Future of Leadership and the Environment is leading, going to where people are, not telling them what to do.

All right. So I was really curious about it just because as you’ve heard I just find it like new and effective and not what I see otherwise. I can get why people want to go for more political activity but to me trying to pass a law without popular support, that’s authoritarian and I don’t see it happening. Whereas you know one of my big goals in this podcast is to make it so the politicians… We keep calling them leaders but they are followers in many regards especially in this area. They’re following the money, they’re doing anything but leading. I mean there are some who are trying but not getting very far. And I want to make it easy for them to make it to… You know I want a not carbon tax but a no pollution tax or externality tax. I want that to pass easily because politicians are like, “Look all the people that’s what they want.” Right now that’s not what they’re doing, they are not behaving consistently with that. But I think Generation 180, we’re moving in that direction, it is getting people active. And yeah, I’m not going to stop people from you know 350.org is doing some really great stuff. I like what they’re doing. But I mean how can we get the oil companies to change? How about we stop buying as much oil and stop burning as much oil? That’ll get them to change. Well, all of these things together. I don’t want to say like one thing only. I know I’ve been on my soapbox for a second there.

Sandy: Well, I am with you. I think you’re exactly right. It is the markets that are going to lead. And that’s what’s so encouraging. That’s why we think the Energy Aware movement has already started. And it starts with you know in the industry, the energy industry where you’re talking about real coal plants and nuclear hydro natural gas and wind and solar, wind and solar have been just crushing it. They’ve been adding so much capacity over the past 10 years, about 90 percent of the capacity net has come from that and so that trend together with these new products that consumers it’s kind of like now it’s our turn as consumers to vote with our wallet and we have these essentially you know the same formula which is better products that are more convenient and they save you money and that’s solar and electric cars, LED lights you know electric chainsaws. But what we have is this opportunity for local energy. We can produce our own energy and we can drive on solar with an electric car. And of course, you’re still connected to the grid. You know you’re still using energy at night. But net net you can produce more than you use. And that’s just really a new development and it’s a market development and that’s where I think people can see that we’re sort of at this tipping point.

Joshua: Speaking of the market and domestic… I mean this country has a huge coastline, we have lots of sun, we have lots of wind. I don’t know the numbers. Maybe you know better than I do, I’m not sure, but I feel like we’re not hitting the ball out of the park like we could. I feel like maybe politically we got our hands tied behind our back, that we don’t have the government support or… I feel like America could be leading the world or at least taking more of a role in solar technology and wind technology and wave technology and these things. Are we reaching our potential?

Sandy: I would say we’re not moving as fast as China or some other countries but we are moving pretty darn fast. And I think you know one of the things that that’s the real hallmark of a market taking off is when the last people who are have been digging in their heels when they turn around and embrace it and you know it’s a huge market. it’s like a supertanker and it’s going to take us a long time to turn the whole energy system. But we’re definitely seeing more utilities in the market looking for you know large scale wind projects and more cities and municipalities you know integrating solar on a sort of a community scale because so many people live in apartments. They’re not going to have their own panels but you can have these communities type installations. So the growth rates are literally exponential so I think it’s the technologies keep getting more compelling, they are more economic, they cost less and they produce more. And so I’m optimistic about where we’re headed. We’re not the fastest in the world. I mean China installs literally twice as much solar and wind as the United States does. In fact, I think they account for about half of the global totals for both. They are on a tear and it’s because the pollution is so bad there and they have a type of government that is less market sensitive. When they make a decision, you know it is autocratic or it’s [unintelligible], it has to be followed.

Joshua: So back here at home you’re optimistic and hearing you and I presume you’re in the business more than I am so I take it you know what you’re talking about and I asked you this before. So the consumer at home should they not try as hard or should they try even harder or should they just be less comfortable doing what they’re doing because the market will take care of things and when they have to change they’ll change?

Sandy: That’s a great question. So we have two types of energy that we use – its direct energy which would be the gasoline we put in our car or the power that comes into our house and then indirect which is you know the products we buy and air travel and other services. And so one of the biggest impacts that a person who flies a lot if they can find a way to fly less through conference calls or video calls or that type of thing, you know one flight around the country back and forth round trip is equal to about a year’s worth of driving. So flying is really carbon intensive. But I think just for me I’d be happy if people were just energy аware, they were more conscious of turning off the light when they leave a room. I feel like it’s just a matter of time before they’re going to be buying electric cars or solar panels. I feel like that’s coming, that’s part of what’s going to help them be energy aware and then you know they’re going to want to insulate their house or use more efficient bulbs because they’re going to be a producer.

So in Sandy’s world which is very naive perhaps but the biggest challenge is just to get people to see energy, to see it differently but to see it at all, to realize that as a nation we are moving in the right direction and as a consumer there’s a huge role that every individual can play and the numbers are staggering. You can quickly get to…Well over half of the carbon emissions are directly attributable to individual behavior with cars and powering our houses so it’s an area that’s ripe for change and people just need to think of energy differently to be able to see that. And just as for instance you know we’ve done the math, we’ve looked at the studies, you know you can save close to 4000 dollars a year if you’re a typical homeowner and you add solar and get an electric car. Gasoline is twice as expensive as electricity. So getting around using electrons is a great way to do it and the maintenance costs are very low. Just like you know you never have to fix your electric drill. That thing just works all the time, just pull the trigger and [sound]. And that’s kind of the way that these electric cars are.

Joshua: Alright. I am going to propose an amendment or an addendum to energy awareness, to energy action following the awareness and usually I say it because if you don’t act, it won’t make a difference. But more in particular I will speak from my experience of what’s driving me to this podcast is that when I’ve made those changes it makes my life better. You know if someone is out there and they really prefer pollution, then it won’t be living by their values. But if they like clean air, clean water, clean land, then it’s living by your values. And it really makes you feel good and it’s not just feel good from woo-woo, like I’m just going to tell myself I feel good. It’s because you’re living consistently with what you value. Or at least I can’t speak for other people but for me it’s living by my values like I’m not flying. Later this month it will be two years that I’m not flying.

Sandy: Wow. That’s great.

Joshua: The person whose conversation I just put up was Frances Hesselbein who I specifically spent more time with because I wasn’t traveling and she’s in New York and I wanted to meet someone. She’s been around a lot longer than I have. I can’t talk about her age because she gets mad at me if I do that but she’s like… I talked about what life was like during World War II and what life was like… Well, I didn’t talk about this on air but like growing up during the Depression and growing up during the Prohibition. Sorry, if this sounds a little off topic but one of the big reasons people travel is to see other cultures. And she’s from as much a different culture as anyone else in the world because it was a different world in a different time and I got to learn and grow and there’s no airplane. I talked to people who go to Bangkok and they’re like, “Yeah, I was talking to this person I know from Facebook.” I’m like, “You’re just in a different place but you didn’t actually get a cultural experience.” It’s like a Facebook cultural experience which is to say not a cultural experience. I mean people get what they want from travel but I found that when you choose to do things by your values you improve your life. So I am sorry, soapbox again. I hope the listeners are not like, “Josh is at it again.”

Sandy: You know though I’ll just encourage you and I’ll say that you know I have solar panels and an electric car and have done what I need to with insulating the house and this type of thing and there’s real joy in driving around on the road and just thinking to yourself, “I’m not going to be stopping at gas stations. I’m not going to use gasoline.” And seeing the panels on the roof it’s also just really exhilarating. There is a sense of freedom there and self-reliance and resilience that’s just I think a part of it. And there is more convenience and you save money and it’s all the other things as well. But I think your life is better with these things.

Joshua: I think a lot of people out there they think environment and they feel guilt or they feel complacency and they don’t want to go near those emotions so they keep away from it. And whereas, yes, as you first become conscious of it you will feel a bit of those things but then you do something about it and then it goes away and gets replaced by exactly what we talk about – joy and resilience and things like that. And it’s kind of like, I don’t know, when you first start exercising, yeah, you’re going to be sore the next day and then you’re going to be more fit. And it’s you know depending on what you would like in life it’s going to be better and then you don’t feel guilty. And I don’t think people should feel guilty for systems that were put in place before they were born.

Sandy: That’s right. And isn’t it the case that our whole lifestyle and our whole world is built on fossil fuels and it’s been a great thing for humanity. It’s just the trick is to recognize that now we have a better way and we should move to it as quickly as we can. And the fact is we’re in almost a type of battle here. It’s a race for time. There’s real urgency and we need everybody to participate. And without sounding the alarm too strongly there I think it is a part of the whole equation. As much as it makes our lives better, there is something we need to do here that is lining up with our values. And so when I leave the house or when my son leaves the house and he leaves his lights on in his room and I walk around and I’m switching off light switches all over the place and I say to myself, “This is how we win.” And it’s just like a reinforcement that we can win, it’s in our control. We are going to be more efficient when we turn off lights when we leave a room, we’re going to implement all these great new products, and this is a wave that’s sort of going through society and this is how we win. And I think helping people see that there’s a hill to climb and that there’s a flag we have to plant and we have to rally around that flag and make this happen. That’s what the Energy Aware movement is about. Being energy whereas is part of the winning army. This is how we’re going to win. It’s the only path.


Joshua: If nature’s setting a deadline in the forms of rising sea levels and plastic pollution and fish being overfished and so forth. When people love what they do deadlines aren’t onerous, they motivate you. So I really like that… I mean look I don’t like that we’re in the situation we are but I think it gives us an opportunity and I think… When someone leads me effectively, when I’m working on a project and they give me reason to do it and I really love it, I want a deadline. I want standards imposed on me because then I know the quality that I want to do it and I feel motivation to do it. So I hope that’s the case with a lot of people. If you’re listening to me and you’re not acting on stuff or you’re acting on stuff a little bit and you have a sense that you could do more, I suggest doubling down and doing more. Also, in the case of Sandy it leads to big huge success. I mean from the first episode we heard about the amount of wind energy and solar energy and the wave energy that you produced and the size of the companies and so forth. And if you’re into leadership, this is global. Global demand is usually pretty good way to get… It’s not just global. Maybe you don’t want to lead on a global scale but maybe you just want to lead on a local scale. It’s the sort of thing that… This is where leadership opportunities are.

Now I want to switch topics all of a sudden. But talking about joy and talking about switching and liking how things have gone, you’ve been changing your diet lately.

Sandy: I have. Yeah.

Joshua: And I’m really curious how that’s worked out. Do you mind sharing how it’s worked out?

Sandy: I’d be happy to. So the challenge was not to eat beef for a month and it’s been a month and it really was pretty easy. Just making the decision to do it was maybe the hardest part of it. There were times where you know I was at a restaurant and everybody’s you know ordering whatever things with beef and meat and I was you know taking the vegetarian plates but I got to say I found some restaurants that I didn’t even know existed in Charlottesville, there all these bowls. I’m sure you’ll have them all over in New York. But like a rice bowl with salad on top of it or there’s this restaurant called Citizen Bowl or B.GOOD, you can get salad wraps and there was just an abundance of variety and things I did not feel like I needed more food. I was totally you know full and happy. I was missing nothing. So it worked out OK.

Joshua: So how about at home. Was it an issue? I mean did you miss meat?

Sandy: Well, you know it was just beef. That’s sort of the highest carbon… But you know my wife was very encouraging. My son you know had a hamburger in front of me and said, “Don’t you want some bite?” So he was more seeing if he could get me to break.

Joshua: And what happened?

Sandy: I was fine. He actually ate a burger and then ate half a burger and left the other half on his plate. And it was tempting but I was fine.

Joshua: And how did it feel? Was it the joy that you described when you were driving down the road and not stopping for gas and you see solar panels on other people’s roofs? Or was it nothing? Because it could have been like, “No big deal.” I’m curious.

Sandy: Yeah. You know honestly it didn’t ring the bell as strong for me as just changes in energy. It’s probably because I’m in the field of energy but I know it has those impacts, carbon emission impact. So I would say I felt good about it but it wasn’t quite as tangible.

Joshua: If you knew earlier what would have happened, would you have done this earlier?

Sandy: Yeah. there’s a side of me yes, that finding those you know eating a plant rich diet I know in my mind it’s healthier for me and I think what I learned now is that it’s also you know it’s delicious. That’s fine. You know it works. And so learning that years earlier would have certainly been better for me.

Joshua: Delicious is like becoming my catchword for all of this because my change started with my diet becoming more delicious. And so were there any hurdles? I mean you mentioned your son, you mentioned being out at restaurants but did you face any big challenges or not?

Sandy: I mean I’m really struggling to think of it you know at one point I was outside of Five Guys which is a burger place and I had not yet had dinner and that was tempting. That was tempting. But you know I was about half an hour away from home and I knew that dinner would be there so I just you know avoided it.

Joshua: All right. There’s like a big bifurcation of some people the story is there is no story, “The challenge was a lot easier than I expected.” and there’s not really much to it to which I hope people at home say, “I should do my thing.” because there’s a chance that it will just be not a big deal. And then others it’s like a big challenge and the challenge is something that is rewarding. It sounds like you in the former camp.

Sandy: I think so.

Joshua: So a month. I would categorize that as like of the whole scheme of one’s life it’s not that big of a deal, it’s a baby step. Have you thought about continuing or is a month enough?

Sandy: I was wondering about that now would I go further with this and I think what would work for me… I think what I would be able to manage realistically is just continuing with like a plant rich diet that to me that means shifting to a place where most of my meals are vegetarian. And I see that as eminently doable now. And so I would see beef as something that you know maybe once or twice a week, same with chicken and the rest you know could easily be vegetarian offering meals. So that’s what I’m going to aim for.

Joshua: I look forward to hearing about it. And now you talk about what you’re doing. I’m curious what does it connect with. I mean is it making the world cleaner or is it energy awareness? I mean when you say you’re in front of Five Guys and you choose not to do it that means you’re choosing to do something, that’s my read, and tell me if you see it differently, but you’re choosing something over pleasure that you know what it is. What are you choosing? What’s the value that you’re connecting with, if that makes sense?

Sandy: It does. And to me it’s carbon emissions I know that meat generally animals that we feed in order to eat animals you know that’s very, very inefficient. And when you’re eating plants directly it’s healthier for you. And so there’s that. But for me it’s carbon emissions of what’s required to raise all those animals. And it’s actually the land as much as anything. There’s an awful lot of land that is being cleared to satisfy people’s desire for beef around the world. More and more people who are almost always plant eating are now you know as their incomes rise choosing to have more of a Western diet. And when you really look at the math it becomes clear that that’s unsustainable and so I’m trying to cut back.

Joshua: So you know a fair amount about this. This wasn’t just like a casual thing. I mean you’ve known about it.

Sandy: Yes.

Joshua: It might not be a casual thing to actually make the choice and start acting consistent with it but what you just said wasn’t stuff that you came up with this week. You knew about all that before.

Sandy: That’s right. And you know I learned it for the first time as I sort of got into Generation 180 and learning more about the choices we have as individuals. And there’s this great book called Drawdown that talks a lot about a whole host of things that can be done to lower our carbon emissions as a society globally and diet is a big one.

Joshua: Oh, that’s right. One of the listeners wrote in about your first interview and asked… You said Drawdown, but what was the other book that you mentioned that got you started the very beginning? Because there are multiple books with that title.

Sandy: I know and you know I got your e-mail with that inquiry and I went and looked on Amazon to try and find it and now I’m in the process of looking through my various bookshelves to try and find it. I recall that it was something like Do What You Love, Love What You Do. But I looked on Amazon and boy, there’s a lot of books with very similar titles and I did not see the one that I read. I know it was published at least by you know I read it in the year 2000 so it was available at that point. I don’t know if it’s still in print and I’m determined to find out and maybe if we get there, you know you can post it in the show notes.

Joshua: OK so listeners, we’re on it. We’ll get back to you. And so with the challenge, it sounds like you’re connect it with diet but also are you going to let this affect the rest of your life or are you extrapolating from food and solar and an electric car? Are there other areas that it’s moving into? Are you going to extrapolate?

Sandy: I feel like for all the things I know that are possible to do a week link with me still diet because I’m still a meat eater but I’m doing everything else. I travel very little by plane and I try to… You know the consumption of goods and services generally you know on the one hand, we can all take heart that you know utility scale clean energy is coming and coming on strong and it’s about 10 percent of the energy in this country now solar and wind. So you know more and more companies are using clean energy. So I feel like I am already addressing solar panels and electric car. I’m doing all the things that I think should be.

Joshua: OK, cool, just checking. And now I want to keep this short so in between then and now I am going to bring up something that’s worth talking about. Maybe we’ll do another conversation later. But I went to Generation 180 at a meeting in New York City about organizing volunteers and I’ll get a comment from you in a second but I really want to say it was phenomenal because I consider myself someone who’s actively doing a lot of stuff to make an effect on the environment and energy and so forth. And then I felt like this working with Generation 180 here’s what I felt was there’s a lot of things that I feel like I want to make a difference but it’s a lot of effort and Generation 180 is providing support in particular in putting solar on rooftops of schools. But I’m also thinking there’s a lot of buildings in New York City that we could put solar on top of. And I felt like I had not felt before which was if I work with Generation 180, I can get a lot more done than if I don’t. And so that’s why I decided to volunteer for you guys even though I felt like I’m already doing a bunch of stuff and I wanted to share that with the world of… I see you guys… There’s lots of other things but for me it’s if I work with you guys, I can get more done than it would otherwise. And you have a network of people who have successfully done something that I would love to get done.

And so, people listening, if Generation 180 does something where you are, get in touch with them and I recommend working with them because you’re going to be able to get more done than you would otherwise. If they’re not where you are, contact them and maybe you can start the thing there. And they started many, many things so it wouldn’t be like you’re starting from scratch. It would be like you’re getting to franchise. You’re going to get to do something that you know you can do it the hard way and you can do it the easy way. I recommend the easy way and the fun way because you know everyone I’ve worked with the Generation 180 cares about what they’re doing and they want to get stuff done. And so I hope I don’t sound like I’m plugging stuff too much and I haven’t actually done a lot yet. I just went to one meeting. But that’s why I have to say about having known you, having known people at the organization, actually going to work where you guys are getting stuff done, sorry if I sound like I am gushing, but it’s all genuine.

Sandy: It is. Thank you. Yeah and I’ll pile on for a second. You know the making school solar is a direct you know decarbonization effort. It’s something you can do. And eventually those panels will be up there if you’re persistent. But what it does that we like as well is advancing the idea of energy awareness and the sort of cultural shift. It’s kind of like recycling where you can think of it as you know Generation 180 is trying to advance the idea that we need to treat energy the way we treat waste. You know we need to be mindful. And so it’s just a cultural shift that happens as these products are adopted. So I’m thrilled.

Joshua: Now as an educator I’ve got to throw in one more. There is a video that I saw that [unintelligible] that I’m not sure if this is on your site or not. I didn’t look it up but it shows what it was like a high school kid and his sister and they got solar on their school and you know they didn’t like install it themselves but they got the ball rolling and as an educator who is big into active experiential project based learning where people work on projects that they care about and they produce something that the world cares about that they care about, that the people in their lives care about, not just some abstract like… You know I love science, I’m totally into measuring say the mass of an electron. I think that’s really cool but putting solar on the rooftop like that’s nature. It directly affects people. And I don’t know what the kid did after high school. I’m guessing he got into like a lot of really good schools because that’s going to get you into college. Or if you’re in school and college it’s going to get you connected. So from an educational point of view I think it’s really solid stuff. You’re going to be a leader in an area with global and national, local demand.

Sandy: Yeah. It’s community-based. You know it’s acting locally too. I think people really appreciate being able to do something that they can see the results you know and they elect the leaders to their school board and to their communities and so there’s accountability. So much good comes out of it.

Joshua: And I think it’s a lot of fun. I mean to see him walking around with these solar things that he was the one who made it happen I mean like that’s great. Most people they have to get a lot of older before they get something on that scale done. And a lot of people never get it done at all. And think of all the schools and all the buildings that this could have worked with like opportunity. If you’re listening to me now, you can get it done in your community. And then what’s going to happen after that? OK. So this is me gushing. So I always close with any anything I didn’t think to bring up that’s worth bringing up?

Sandy: You know I think we’ve covered a lot. I’m just so happy to be a part of this, Josh. I think what you’re doing is the right thing influencing influencers and that’s the way things change. So well done.

Joshua: Great. Maybe you just said what I was going to ask. The last question is is there any messages for the listeners.

Sandy: Get energy aware.

Joshua: That’s pretty simple. Yeah. I agree. I’m thinking how can I add to that. I can’t add to that. Oh, wait I have to say, “Get energy aware and act.”

Sandy: Yeah. Generation 180 will show you what that means and how to do it.

Joshua: Sandy, thank you very much and I look forward to keeping in touch. I leave an open invitation that if your challenge needs something or if this leads to something more and there’s another conversation to be had, I’m happy to record it and bring it back to the audience again.

Sandy: Thanks, Joshua. Thanks so much. It’s been a pleasure.


Energy awareness, more efficient products, reducing consumption. These are nice things but I think the big thing at least that I got was it’s yet another case of finding his challenge easier than expected. If you’re waiting to start your challenge, I hope that you feel inspired because what I heard was he sounded happy, he was laughing, he was sharing his thing with family, they were making fun of him but in a fun playful way and most of all it was delicious. That was his word, not mine. But as listeners know that’s one of my favorite words because I think that changing your behavior to protect the environment is delicious.

Read my weekly newsletter

On initiative, leadership, the environment, and burpees

We won't send you spam. Unsubscribe at any time. Powered by ConvertKit

Leave a Reply

Sign up for my weekly newsletter