Andrew Vaucrosson the President of Greenrock spoke to us about how we can all make meaningful change in Bermuda through adopting sustainable lifestyle choices. What is sustainable development from a theoretical perspective? Quite simply, it's the art of developing solutions for challenges using a triple bottom-line perspective. Where your solution takes into perspective of how it will benefit society, the environment and the economy. By doing this, in theory, you will create a just, efficient, and healthy community.
 

Putting this theory into practice in Bermuda requires Government policy and willingness along with support and understanding of individuals and companies. Much of our work is centered on Bermuda's Sustainable Development Plan which was drafted by Alex Scott's government in 2005 and finally implemented in 2008.  To build this Plan required a lot of time, research, dedication, as well as public funding. Both the private and public sectors were consulted in order to help narrow down the themes and identify the objectives of this Plan.  In addition to coming up with Objectives, this Plan also outlines actions steps as well as the challenges each action step must overcome in order to be completed. The Plan is broken down into five themes:   Building and Maintaining an Inclusive Strong Economy, Transforming Governance and the Public Sector, Protecting and Enhancing our Environment and Natural Resources, Sustaining our Communities (4), Living within Bermuda's Limits.

            Greenrock has initiated a number of things to meet its goal of 'Changing the Mindset' in Bermuda. At the beginning of 2007, Greenrock introduced the BYOB reusable shopping bag to Bermuda.  Our goal was to help reduce the amount of plastic and paper shopping bags handed out by grocery stores.  On our website, we provided proven facts on the amount of energy, chemicals, and waste typically consumed in producing and distributing plastic and paper shopping bags.        In another project, we partnered with HWP, BELCO and GE for a Bulb Swap campaign where anyone could exchange two used incandescent bulbs for two brand new GE Compact Fluorescent Lightbulbs (or CFLs).  When it comes to energy supply and usage, Greenrock is helping to encourage local entrepreneurs wanting to become a part of the new green economy by creating ventures that would supply micro-renewable energy systems to Bermuda. These systems utilize innovations in photovoltaic solar, solar thermal water, and; wind turbines and would be at a scale and cost suitable for commercial and home applications.  These micro-renewable systems could help counter the escalating cost of energy in Bermuda while limiting our emissions that contribute to global warming.  When it comes to transportation, we have helped beta test two electric scooter models and provided valuable feedback and direction to the current distributors of electric scooters on the island. Our educational effort in Bermuda has been growing and has a community based focus. Since 2005, we have been doing educational forums on Global Warming and Recycling . Over the last year and half, Greenrock has been conducting boardroom discussions with companies and organizations about creating a 'Green Office'. From this initiative, companies have quickly realized that going Green creates operation efficiency and cost savings, while fostering higher staff morale due to healthier workspaces and with the knowledge of having a positive environmental impact to Bermuda .

            We encourage Bermuda to contribute to our 'Changing the Mindset' fund to help continue our work in the community and maintain our web presence. We are also part of the International Charity Fund of Bermuda (ICFB) so that donations received by the ICFB for Greenrock from US companies or citizens can be eligible for tax deduction. If you go to our website - www.greenrock.org - and click on Patron, you can learn more on how you can contribute to our efforts.