“People need to view sustainability as a direct link to their pocket book.”
“It’s great to be ‘Green’, but I think that term means too many things to too many people. In some places it’s downright derogatory,” says Dustin who was recently named environmental sustainability coordinator for the City of Sunnyvale, California. “People need to view sustainability as a direct link to their pocketbook. If you can reduce the amount of water you use, that’s money you didn’t spend (saved), same goes for lights, turn it off…money in the bank. Plant a garden, even if it is one thing…your favorite beans….you won’t be buying it at the store…learn to can…it’s all about sustainability. The simplest things can bring the biggest savings. And you always start with the low hanging fruit. A behavioral change is what is needed and the hardest to achieve. To change people’s habits requires an acknowledgment of the issue (drought)…I run the water when I brush my teeth…(brown outs) I leave the lights on…and then to turn off the water, turn off the lights and change that habit, is what will do the most.”
Dustin moved to Sunnyvale 10 years ago to pursue a career in Industrial Waste, or what he describes as the “Sewer Police”. “I had the opportunity to visit and inspect places like Lockheed Martin, where I got to see the solar array that was attached to the International Space Station (the very one that fell off its bolts a few years ago). I have gotten to visit NASA, Applied Materials, AMD, pharmaceutical companies, amazing industries producing amazing technology. Seeing how a semiconductor is made and walking through a clean room is something all should experience.” He is currently working on a Community Climate Action Plan, which will be incorporated into Sunnyvale’s General Plan. “We just replaced 3000 HPS street lights with LED street lights which will significantly reduce our energy consumption and save the city about $250,000 per year.” Dustin also works with Acterra, a nonprofit organization that provides training and free home energy audits.
As for my personal life, I finished my MPA from San Jose State University 2007. I was married this August 29th. My wife Patty is from South Pasadena via Nicaragua, attended UCLA B.A. and Santa Clara Univ. J.D. and is now a Juvenile Dependency Attorney in San Jose. I spend my time golfing when I can, traveling when we can. We are just back from our honeymoon in Maui. I visited my family homestead in Lom, Norway in 2004. We have a Wheaton Terrier, Lucy.
Memories of OSU…being selected for the HP Half Time shootout and throwing up air balls in front of thousands…but at least I got a calculator. Dr. Anna Harding, the inspiration for me getting into this field. Her intro Env Health class got me to focus, turned me on to EHS. And then each subsequent course was a perfect fit. I remember completing the Stream Survey with a team of classmates from the source in the mountains, through cow pastures, neighborhoods and dumping into the Mary’s River.