Region’s Largest Companies Embrace Green Economy as Sustainable Cleveland 2019 Summit Begins This Week


Cleveland, Ohio, is embracing regional sustainability as an important part of its economic future: “Despite the recession and mixed signals from Congress about greening American industry, some of Cleveland’s largest companies are embracing a revolutionary concept called sustainability.

And when Sustainable Cleveland 2019 holds its second annual summit in the coming week, corporate executives are expected to play some the leading roles. That’s a good sign, organizers say, because only business has the combined muscle it will take to transform the economy into one that considers economic development’s effect on the environment and the welfare of people. The sustainability movement’s mantra, “people, planet, profit,” combines social reform, environmental commitment with long-term economic development — that is, sustainable development…

…The whole process is called “appreciative inquiry” because it looks for and focuses on the strengths a company’s employees – or in this case a region’s citizens – possess rather than their weaknesses. Cooperrider has conducted more than 500 such events around the globe for corporations, governments, the Navy and even the Dalai Lama.

The city has invited 500 to the second summit, planned for Wednesday and Thursday at Public Hall. And there is still room for a few more participants, said Andrew Watterson, the city’s sustainability chief. The working groups in the 2009 summit came up with literally thousands of ideas. At least 15 of the 20 working groups have continued to meet over the entire year.”

Click here for the full Plain Dealer story by John Funk. For a piece on Cleveland’s sustainability efforts in Next American City, click here.

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