Meeting of the (Green) Minds at Greenbuild 2016
One of the things that I am most humbled by professionally is being able to work for a company that not only is dedicated to inventing innovative, life-changing LED products, but one that is also committed to making a truly positive impact on our environment and the world around us. It’s a core tenant we take pretty seriously at Lighting Science. As a company, we are driven by a vision of a future where our world can be a healthier and more sustainable place that is impacted directly through the products we create. Each one of us is tasked to look at our products, processes and environment and see how we can make it better. How can we create something that is not only beautiful and functional in an environment, but how can we make that environment and those in it healthier? It’s one of the many inspiring perks of working alongside so many dynamic industry thought leaders and engineers and can make working daily with what some would call “a simple light bulb” very rewarding.
Recently, I had the opportunity to head to Los Angeles, CA to attend the 2016 Greenbuild International Conference and Expo. Greenbuild is the largest trade-show and conference in the world dedicated exclusively to the green building movement. This global event brings together 20,000+ industry experts, visionaries, manufacturers and individuals to learn, see, educate and connect on the topic of sustainability in the built environment. As a manufacturer, I found it to be a unique experience to connect with companies and individuals who share our passion for “greening” the building industry and changing the way we look and see things in the future.
Walking through the doors of the convention center the first day, I can tell you the buzz was palpable. The trade show floor was buzzing with excitement and I was blown away by the sheer variety and magnitude of the assortment of vendors. Over 550 vendors from all building areas displaying eco-friendly designs, ideas, products and supplies on the show floor. From LED lighting to kitchen finishes to sustainable vertical farming solutions to a green “Home of the Future” – every sector and potential building and design product imaginable was represented. To take it even one step further, I noticed even the smallest details of the show’s resources had been thought out from a sustainability factor, to include a request for little to no printed materials, boxed water and eco-friendly tools throughout the show floor. Also, when walking the exhibit hall and talking to others who were exhibiting, it was clear that their commitment to designing and manufacturing sustainable and eco-friendly solutions was at the core of their design efforts and beliefs.
This was also evident in the educational sessions. Unlike a typical tradeshow where many people attending are there to merely walk the show and not truly “engage”, Greenbuild had a very different kind of energy. The attendees I met were green-educated or true green-champions in many cases, passionate on the subject of sustainable building, and they were there to share their thoughts, ideas and experiences as much as to learn and take something away from the show. Conversations were thoughtful and I learned just as much as I shared. Additionally, one of the things that impressed me was that people were not just talking about current trends or products, but thinking and providing solutions for the future and what a green building environment, and world, might look like 5,10 or even 50 years down the road.
Making our Mark
Lighting Science had a booth in the Health and Wellness pavilion, showcasing our HealthE™ biological LED lighting solutions, our VividGro™ Grow Light technology, and our commercial LSPro line of products. With all the recent research and news surrounding the negative effects of blue light on the human body, our HealthE™ lights fit right into many of the concerns of show-goers – How can we create indoor living spaces that are beautiful as well as healthy for us. Our GoodDay™/Awake and Alert™ and GoodNight™ were popular as many attendees who stopped by were interested in creating living environments that were healthy as well as integrated and sustainable. Another big hit with the builders and designers was our Durabulb™ – a shatter-resistant LED lamp that is lightweight, provides amazing light and can be used in a variety of often challenging environments. This lamp is perfect for garages, stairwells and a variety of rugged environments. It also is manufactured with less materials and comes in re-useable buckets. It was a busy few days for our team, but we had the opportunity to meet and connect with a variety of industry peers and experts who shared our passion for changing the way we look at the built environment.
As the trade-show came to a close, and I headed back home, I had several hours to reflect on the impact the show had on me. Greenbuild 2016 was more of an experience than a traditional trade show, featuring a variety of people and resources that were just as passionate about making tangible changes that can affect our world as I was. It was more than a 4-day conference. It was more than a simple trade show or learning session. I realized that it was really a movement of dedicated and enthusiastic individuals who come together to create a more sustainable and green world for all of us. It was a show that was focused as much on education and learning as it was on networking and complete market transformation. I left looking at things a little differently, inspired and excited about many of the opportunities and ideas we had shared as a group and as individuals, and looking forward to learning more next year at Greenbuild 2017!