The biggest green building conference — the annual GreenBuild hosted by USGBC — just finished in San Francisco. Your roving reporters from HouseTalk were very much there, but very much like the blind men in the Kipling fable can only report how the event went off from very localized perspectives.
I loved it. Not so much for the conference itself, which had the predictable high level of bombast, greenwash, and just plain noise, but for the people. There were — in between the bombasters — plenty of thoughtful and inspiring speakers such as Paul Hawken, Biz Stone, Arlene Blum, Pliny Fisk, Jane McGonigal, and California Governor Jerry Brown. Even though the venue was unfortunately splattered across three separate buildings at Moscone Center, the conference also provided this attendee the most important thing — contact. In the course of three days I managed to see and talk with dozens of old friends from 20 years in green building, and make many new friends & contacts. And that is the main reason for hauling all those bodies across the skies to one place — so we can see each other, share a meal, and “ideas can get together and have sex” (Hawken). A sexy time was had by all, and that is a success.