In this episode of the Smart Community podcast I have a brilliant chat with Johanna Kloot, the founder of sustainability software GreenKPI. Johanna tells us about her background as a pilot, plus how an illness and her mission of making the world a better place for her nephew led to her career as a sustainability consultant. We discuss what sustainability is, why Smart Cities and Smart Communities are so important and how Johanna sees Australia embracing these concepts. Johanna and I then discuss the projects she’s working on and how GreenKPI came to be. She tells us about the 3 main barriers businesses face in implementing sustainability as well as how important it is to be engaging and empowering people working at the ground level—not just those in head office. We explore making sustainability accessible and the need for small to medium enterprises to be included, plus the three-pronged approach to sustainability integration across consumer, business and government. We finish our chat discussing the emerging trends of food and water security that people aren’t talking about enough, and the challenges, opportunities and lessons learned in COVID around housing in cities. As always, we hope you enjoy listening to this episode as much as we enjoyed making it. 

Listen here: 

What we cover in this episode:

  • Johanna’s background as a pilot and passion for making the world a better place for her nephew
  • How an illness led to her career as a sustainability consultant
  • What sparked Johanna’s interest in the Smart Community space 
  • What sustainability means and why a Smart Community is so important 
  • How Johanna sees Australia currently embracing this concept 
  • Projects Johanna is working on and how Green KPI came to be
  • The three barriers businesses face in implementing sustainability 
  • The importance of engaging and empowering people working at the ground level, not just those in head office 
  • Making sustainability accessible and the need for small to medium enterprise being included 
  • Some examples from Johanna’s work about the ROI on investing in sustainability
  • Taking a three-pronged approach to sustainability by integrating consumer, business and government
  • The emerging trends people aren’t talking about enough of food and water security 
  • The challenges and opportunities around housing in cities, and the lessons learned in COVID

Quotes:

“Sustainability really is about the relationship between the environment, society and the economy…A Smart City is inhabited and designed by people who are aware that everything that they have, everything they eat, drink, wear, travel on, sleep in, sit on and everything they watch has come from the environment, and it will go back to the environment. And as long as we have a good, strong, healthy environment, we have good strong healthy societies and good, strong, healthy economies.”

“I kept coming across the same three barriers to businesses embracing sustainability, and that was time, cost and knowledge. A lot of businesses didn’t have time to think about it to implement it. They didn’t even know what it was. And if they did have the time, and they did know what it was, they didn’t have the finances to invest, especially smaller to medium sized enterprises.”

“The really important thing about making sure that [sustainability is] small to medium enterprise inclusive, is that the World Economic Forum recently put a paper out that said that 95% of the actual work done is done by small to medium enterprise. Now, our vision is for a clean, green, equitable global supply chain. If we don’t support every business to achieve that, well, there’s no way we can ever have that.”

“I see the road to sustainability as a three-pronged approach where the consumer, business and government work together towards a common goal. We need businesses that have the confidence to produce sustainable products and services, which means consumer demand must exist, and the government ensures a level playing field in the way of regulations and other support mechanisms. At the moment, I know so many people that want to engage, particularly Millennials…so the demand is there. But the the supply isn’t. And it’s very difficult for businesses to change the way they do business. They need to of course, but they need the confidence because it does take a bit of effort to change. And the confidence can only come by consumer demand.”

“Food and water security are increasingly a concern globally. There are a few water hotspots around the world where water wars could lead to food insecurity. Rain patterns have changed and the natural water storage systems are beginning to show signs of stress. It’s simple maths that when more water is being used than is going into storage, we will run out.”

Connect: 

Find the full show notes at: www.mysmart.community 

Connect with Johanna on LinkedIn or via the Green KPI website

Connect with me via email: hello@mysmart.community 

Connect with My Smart Community via LinkedIn or Twitter and watch on YouTube

The Smart Community Podcast is produced by Perk Digital.

My Smart Community

My Smart Community offers consulting and media services with a focus on making our communities more accessible, liveable and sustainable for all. We have a focus on Smart Mobility, Smart project management, Smart technology in regional communities, dealing with disruption and facilitating genuine collaboration. As well as podcast production, communication and media advisory and engagement, keynote speaking, moderating, master of ceremonies and workshop design and facilitation.

The Smart Community Podcast

The Smart Community Podcast is a hub where smart and exciting people from all around the world come to discuss all things Smart City, Smart Town, Smart Region - anything that makes a place more liveable. Together we can create our own Smart Communities.

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