Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Sustainability: Our Competitive Advantage

It's a bitter sweet victory to feel like I'm within a hair's breath of achieving something I've been working towards for three decades: We're on the doorstep of reaching the critical mass necessary for a cathartic change in a society; and it's happening right here in Grenada, right now.

Sustainability may become our economic driver.

Leaders of Grenada's largest industry, the biggest economic contributors to the island are poised on the precipice of a decision about whether or not to embrace 'sustainability' as the cornerstone that defines who we are, what we offer to the world, and how we want to head into the future. Ironically, what Grenada decides to do at this change point in it's history could have a global impact - because what happens here can and does happen everywhere. The only real difference is that we're 100,000 people on a rock in the middle of nowhere so every little thing we do is visible and counts. And what sets us apart is that we've got the critical mass ready to embrace it.

Is a post-industrial sustainable society possible?

One thing I'm convinced of is that if it is, it's got to be led by the private sector. Without wanting to offend my public service colleagues around the world; the difference between the private sector and the public sector is an important once. The public sector tends to focus on process and the private sector tends to focus on results.

We need results and we need them fast.

Because we are small we can rise fast. But because we are small, we can fall fast too.

We're going to rise. And 20 years from now, we'll be the envy of the world over.

Monday, August 12, 2013

The Fixer

After suffering a incredibly demanding production schedule while the crew of the hit TV series "Survivorman" were here; a beloved member of my family passed away. As a result, my blog slowed down and my work piled up!

Now that I am back in the saddle, I've got lots of positive things to talk about.

The production of 2 episodes of hit Discovery Channel series, "Survivorman" was very successful! One episode was filmed on an uninhabited island found off the south coast of Carriacou. Can't find it on a map? - don't be surprised - it's really in the middle of nowhere! The island, perched within the archipelago known as the 'Grenadines' is happily one of the few places left on earth that is still teeming with wildlife. There's an abundance of shore birds, turtles, fish and cactus there making the island an incredibly interesting place to visit. A Galapagos in the Caribbean! It's not easy to access however, with a rocky shoreline that prohibits access from most boast seaworthy enough to battle the big waves to get there. The second episode was filmed at the top of Mt. St. Catherine's and an old estate called Tufton Hall. The volcanic mountain may not have jaguars and other scary things on it, but that's part of what makes is so great - a rain forest accessible to those of us with the stamina to climb high heights without being afraid of what we'll encounter when we get there. Even though I was up at the Mt. Edgecombe Estate with the production crew; I don't know much about what's in the episodes the star, Les Stroud filmed - because unlike most reality TV shows - he actually does what he says he's doing. It's not staged - so the only people who know what's going to be in the show before it airs, are the people who edit the footage he took while he was alone in the wilderness. The crew I was with are there to get landscape shots that are edited into Les' footage. Apparently in show biz, it's called "B-Roll". :oP

Les Stroud, who is not just a survivalist and reality TV star - was captured by Grenada as he wrote the following words on his Facebook page:

Les Stroud: “Hey all – whew!!! What a whirlwind tour of Grenada! I am finally back home and getting only a quick rest before I head out to film more Survivorman. Up next?? – Survivorman and Son! ......I have to bring you on board with something: and that is that Grenada is a place you MUST visit. It is the Caribbean’s best kept secret. An unbelievably beautiful place with a lot to offer; world class diving with unique coral reef we had not seen anywhere else, world class sailing, and my favorite – an interior mountainous cloud forest that has breathtaking views of the dark green jungle. I spent my time surviving in an area called Tufton Hall – and it was outstanding. Grand Etang is not to be missed either. As well I survived on a private island off the coast a few hours – simply beautiful. My friends at the True Blue Bay Resort will set you up well for all your adventures and I sincerely hope to go back there with some down time to just enjoy what is now one of my most favorite tropical destinations. Make sure you eat at The Aquarium or Savvy’s while you are there! You guys know I would [not] steer you wrong and lead you somewhere that wasn't amazing – and Grenada – still struggling after Hurricane Ivan can use your visit to get it going again – the people are wonderful and the island is not to be missed. If I could I would get UNESCO to designate it a world heritage site tomorrow!! But for now – I just want to sit on my dock, crack open a Guinness and watch my Muskokan sunset while I think about what it is going to be like to have to survive with my son in two weeks……to be continued….L”

Now that's what I call a rave review!

....but my work here is not yet done. Not while our unemployment rate is over 30% poverty rate near 50% and our precious environment hanging the balance. My next project is to assist the Grenada Chocolate Factory. I've volunteered my time to help them develop a funding proposal that will facilitate "Change Management" (among other things) to ensure that this wonderful thing Mott Green created does not die with him. For more about Mott Green and the Grenada Chocolate Factory, see my posts for May and June 2013.