Wednesday, December 15, 2004

Cradle To Cradle To Washington

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Last month's U.S. election results elicited the predictable laments from the enviro crowd. "The re-election of President George W. Bush means that polluters will enjoy four more years of lax enforcement," moaned the Natural Resources Defense Council.

But the political winds don't seem to ruffle one prominent environmentalist: William McDonough, a 53-year-old architect and man dubbed a "hero for the planet" by Time magazine in 1999. "We don't focus on politics, because they come and go," McDonough said in a phone interview last week, adding, "Republicans are very attracted to what we do."

Indeed, last January, McDonough was back at the White House, where he had previously accepted an environmental award from President Bill Clinton, expounding his ideas on ecologically sustainable design to a meeting of government officials arranged by Bush's Office of Management and Budget. "We've met with many of the departments and agencies many times since," McDonough says.

The subject of those meetings is what McDonough calls "Eco-effectiveness" and "Cradle to Cradle Design." In short, it's an effort to refashion architecture and industry so that they emulate the ecosystems found in the natural world.

Full story at