Wanted: You, For Sustainability Leader

Sustainability Concept Diagram

Every kid in the universe knows what’s it’s like to want to grow up and change the world.  That innate desire to make a difference starts in us the moment we begin to figure out ambition, and sustainability puts that power into our hands.

That’s the message I hope attendees walked away with this morning after my talk at the National Facilities Management and Technology Conference in Baltimore.  The power is in our hands, but the sustainability equation is a bit more complicated than expressing intent or simply cutting costs.

Instead, a sustainbility agenda starts with cost counting.  We can’t just slash our budgets in certain places and call it sustainability.  A true sustainability approach means starting from scratch.  In every business in America, there is money lying on the table in the form of inefficiencies.  Removing these inefficiencies will contribute directly and immediately, to your bottom line.

But let not jump ahead of ourselves.  First, what is sustainability?  One definition I like is, sustainability is meeting the needs of the current generation without compromising the needs of future generations.

What motivates to me every day is there is a global sustainability movement growing across industries.  When we first started ValleyCrest Takes On I was lucky to find a single article on smart water use.  Now I can hardly count the number of reputable water management blogs on my fingers.

There is a new wave of action and engagement and we need to capture some of this for our organizations so we can move forward in a more profitable and positive manner.  So what does sustainability entail?  In terms of landscape maintenance, it means reducing inputs like water, fertilizer and fuel.  It also means reducing outputs like green waste, water pollution, and air pollution.

Now is the time to use the momentum of this growth to accelerate our businesses in a way that drives us to become more profitable with better, more sustainable products.  And you know what the really good news is?  You don’t have to have a corner office to be a sustainability leader.

Every single one of us can influence and motivate those around us to be more sustainable.  This will be good for business and for the environment.  The only question remaining is, are you ready to lead?

Richard Restuccia  If you like this post, consider following me on Twitter @H2otrends.

Check out additional slides on my sustainable landscape practices board.

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Richard Restuccia

Richard Restuccia is a water management evangelist. He believes passionately in water efficiency and sees the financial and social benefits far too often to keep a secret. Richard is a spokesperson at industry events and on the Hill to provide direction and insight on landscape water management best practices. Richard puts his words into action through service on various boards and committees. Currently he serves on the Irrigation Association’s Board of Directors. As a board member, Richard serves in a variety of capacities, including government/public affairs. He is the liaison between the board and its marketing committee on the best ways to promote water efficiency and educate industry professionals on new technologies, products and services. Richard is also a regular contributor to Lawn & Landscape Magazine.




  1. Wednesday, 11:23 Caroline

    Thought of you this morning . . . oddly in the shower. My 5-year old son who was with me in the bathroom saw how I was letting the water run before I got in. Of course, I was waiting for the water to warm up. He yells at me in a very concerned and serious way, “Mom, you’re wasting our planet.” When I read the opening to your post about how every kid wants to grow up and change the world, I thought that I may very well be raising one of them. Great post, Richard

  2. Wednesday, 2:45 Martha Golea

    Caroline, it’s exciting to hear that your 5 year old is already so thoughtful and aware of waste happening around him. I sincerely hope that the habits that parents are teaching their children right now become more and more common with each generation.

    Richard, thanks for sharing your presentation slides with us through this post, your Pinterest board and your tweets this morning! I really felt like I was able to follow along with the presentation through all of my favorite social media channels and I could help share your call-to-action with my own followers so easily. In my opinion, as social media makes the world more and more connected, people are becoming much more conscious of the message of sustainability. Continue leading the way!

  3. Thursday, 6:33 Doug

    While conserving water is always on my radar at the community I live in I am also looking at the green waste and making sure it is recycled

  4. Thursday, 6:34 Dendra Best

    Hi Richard and Caroline,
    WaterSense has many resources. One we used a few years back was a peel off backing / bathroom mirror static cling. Just 5 x 5 it listed 5 Simple ways to save water in the bathroom. It pointed out that the water running down the drain is expensive drinking water! We’ve thought about a “Pot Of Gold!” campaign to give away stainless steel or food grade plastic buckets to catch shower water to keep in the fridge. I do that here, and use the water for cooking, coffee, rewatering my dog (who then requires 3 times a day dewatering!)
    Kind regards and love your web site!
    Dendra Best.

  5. Thursday, 9:05 Lorraine DiBacco

    My bud Lenny Kravitz emailed me today…. # of kids getting safe drinking water much improved thanks to many groups. OK it was a UNICEF email.They put out release this week that goal was met to cut in half the number of people without access to safe drinking water well before 2015 deadline.
    Right here in L.A. there’s a group helping to get wells where they’re needed most.

  6. Sunday, 10:44 Judith

    I genuinely liked your innvvatioe angle that you have on the subject. Certainly wasn’t planning on this at the time I begun searching for tips. Your ideas were totally easy to get. Happy to find out that there’s an person here that gets it on the spot what its is talking about.

  7. […] are 3 basic pillars of sustainability which must be considered and kept in […]

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