Climate

Audubon Florida Launches Climate Entrepreneurs Panel Series

Florida entrepreneurs to discuss ways how they are rising to the challenge on July 26.

Across the state, Florida businesses are forging a new climate economy—one which strengthens both our financial and environmental resilience. From sustainable communities to artificial reef installations, entrepreneurs are meeting the threats of a changing climate while pioneering innovative business models and creating thousands of new jobs.

Join Audubon Florida for a conversation with a suite of entrepreneurs building a resilient, economically strong future for Floridians. The free panel discussion entitled Creating a New Climate Economy will focus on the successes of entrepreneurs leading the way in this new climate economy.

Tuesday, July 26 at 6 p.m. 

Register here for our free, virtual event.

Subsequent Climate Entrepreneur events will be scheduled in 2022-23.

Meet the panelists:

Husein Cumber
Florida East Coast Industries

As FECI’s Chief Strategy Officer, Husein Cumber recognizes that mass transit has always been desirable for its convenience; now, he sees that there is also increased demand from Floridians because of transit’s role in addressing climate change. “It’s been an evolution. We launched Brightline (FECI’s high-speed rail enterprise in Florida) in 2012, and if you think back over the last ten years, a lot of the debate was centered on whether or not climate change exists. Today, the discussion has shifted from not whether it exists, but to what are the different mitigation measures that we need to put in place to address climate change,” Cumber explains. “People need mobility options, and being able to move people through mass transportation is critical.”

Syd Kitson
Chairman and CEO, Kitson and Partners

Seventeen years ago, Syd Kitson had a crazy idea: To build a new community—a town—that would be mainstream sustainable. Powered by solar energy and developed with an emphasis on native plants and wetland restoration, Babcock Ranch is a 20,000-home community that makes both environmental and economic sense. “I have other developers calling me and asking ‘Do you mind if I steal your playbook?’ and I say, it’d be the greatest compliment you could ever give me.”

Thomas J. Brown
CEO, Living Shorelines Solutions, Inc.

Wave Attenuation Devices (WADs) are the foundation of Brown’s company, Living Shoreline Solutions. WADs are innovative structures that, when placed in the water along shorelines, reduce the amount of wave energy reaching the coast. The demand for innovative climate technologies that protect communities, wildlife, and natural spaces make WADs both desirable and profitable. Brown has worked in Florida and across the United States to protect shores. By partnering with local governments, various organizations, and the Army Corps of Engineers, Living Shoreline Solutions has burgeoned, and Brown is excited for future projects.

Dr. Sastry Pamidi
Chair and Professor, FAMU-FSU

The frontier of renewable energy is in energy storage. Reducing the size and increasing the efficiency of battery storage and technology offers tremendous opportunities for city infrastructure, transportation, and renewable energy generation. Dr. Pamidi’s team at the Florida State University Center for Advanced Power Systems are partnering with Florida businesses to develop technologies and bring jobs to the Sunshine State, which is not only building the future of renewable technology but is also driving the growth of this sector and its jobs for Floridians. “Strong research centers with cutting edge science attract renewable tech companies to Florida. We have the expertise and technologies, as well as a highly-skilled workforce trained at our universities.”

Audubon Florida is working to reduce the state’s carbon footprint and save taxpayer dollars by improving energy efficiency, helping make our coastal areas more resilient, and inspiring citizens to work with their elected officials to expand renewable energy sources. 

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