Category Archives: Leaders

Leaders, heroes, politicians and people making a mark in the environment and sustainability.

Michael Reynolds – inspiring words from the maverick eco architect

Michael Reynolds was the focus of the award-winning film ‘Garbage Warrior’ – a documentary about his 40 year struggle to build sustainable houses.

The Environment Show recently interviewed Reynolds as part of our new series on environment leaders. We found so many great Reynolds quotes in our research, we thought we’d compile them for good keeping. (We couldn’t bear to let them get away.)

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The Fall Of An Environmental Leader: Maldives President Mohamed Nasheed

Who is Mohamed Nasheed and why does he matter?

Until last week Nasheed was President of The Maldives – a string of 1200 tiny islands in the Indian Ocean where the average elevation is just 5 feet above sea level.

After Nasheed came to office in 2008, he made world headlines when he declared the Maldives was in the market for a new homeland for its doomed population – given predictions of sea level rise due to global warming.

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2008: only the 7th warmest year on record!

Global temperature rise since the industrial revolution - from NASA

2008 – a not so hot year compared to the last few, but ….. it looks like the only way is up! This is the global temperature trend since the industrial revolution.

Maybe we’re so used to hearing about global warming, the 7th warmest year on record doesn’t sound so bad. But remember most of the other warmest years have all occurred since 1998 – as you can see in the chart above.

These figures have been compiled and were released yesterday by NASA’s Goddard Institute and the World Meterological Organisation.

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Jan Gehl – the urban planning rock star (part 2)

Cities like Sydney and New York can shake their car culture and get people to walk and ride bikes. It can be done. It’s happened in Copenhagen. It’s even part of the Danish national health policy. Jan Gehl tells us all about it.

He also tells us about the transformation of the Melbourne CBD (thanks to his plans.)

More common sense and dry Scandinavian humour from the urban planning rock star.

The ‘urban planning rock star’ changing city environments around the world

Wall to wall vehicles. Thats how Jan Gehl describes Sydney’s CBD. He says Sydney has squandered its beauty and it’s time something was done about it.

Professor Gehl was commissioned by the City of Sydney to re-think its centre. He’s proposed to divert cars and give streets back to the people. Sound radical? His plans have been implemented in other cities like Copenhagen and Melbourne, and surprise, they’ve made life heaps better. And, interestingly, not just for people. Businesses have thrived too.

Check this interview out – Jan’s quite a character. No wonder he’s been called an ‘urban planning rock star’.

His next commission, by the way, is to develop a plan for New York City.