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Capital ADVOCACY. DIALOGUE. CONNECTIONS.

WINDMILL’S JEFF WESTEINDE ON THE BUSINESS VALUE OF SUSTAINABILITY p.17

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BOTTOMS UP!

A local coffee roaster generates sustainable benefits

THE SUSTAINABILITY ISSUE

A GREENPRINT FOR THE FUTURE Making Ottawa the greenest capital in the world THE BUSINESS MAGAZINE OF

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The Honourable Catherine McKenna Minister of Environment and Climate Change

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CONTENTS

Capital

SPRING/SUMMER 2017

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30

34

COVE R : MARK HOLL ERON

FEATURES

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34

Creating Ottawa’s Greenprint Can Ottawa become the greenest capital in the world?

Bottoms Up! How a local coffee roaster generates sustainable benefits

Weekend Warriors or Way of Life? Ottawa’s access to nature is more than just a luxury—it’s a selling point

BY K AARI N A STIFF

BY BA R BA R A BA L FOUR

BY TA M A R A M I CN E R

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CONTENTS

Capital

SPRING/SUMMER 2017

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DEPARTMENTS

13 Capital Context Clean Technology: The Future is Now: Ottawa companies have already blazed different trails

20 Building the Capital Rolling Out From the Centre: Ottawa Centre EcoDistrict programs get citywide traction

IN EVERY ISSUE

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Starting Up in Ottawa Breaking Ground: Rethinking how we buy our food

The OCC Perspective

BY BA R BA R A BA L FOUR

BY JEFF BUC KSTEIN

BY L EO VAL I QUET T E

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The Last Word Abraham Maslow’s Tips for Self-Actualization

CEO Talk Green Is Good for Business: Four Ottawa CEOs talk sustainability

10 From the Editor

On the Cover

Capital ADVOCACY. DIALOGUE. CONNECTIONS.

BY CORY G A L BR A I TH

WINDMILL’S JEFF WESTEINDE ON THE BUSINESS VALUE OF SUSTAINABILITY p.17

p.17

VISIT OUR WEBSITE! CAPITALMAG.CA

p.30

BY AL I S ON L ARAB I E CHASE

BOTTOMS UP!

A local coffee roaster generates sustainable benefits

p.26 A GREENPRINT THE SUSTAINABILITY ISSUE

FOR THE FUTURE Making Ottawa the greenest capital in the world

P M 43136012

The Honourable Catherine McKenna Minister of Environment and Climate Change

THE BUSINESS MAGAZINE OF SPRING/SUMMER 2017

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Macan Life, intensified.

Mark Motors Porsche 613-749-4275 611 Montreal Rd. markmotorsporsche.com / Mark.Motors.Porsche


THE OCC PERSPECTIVE

Competing in the Low-Carbon Economy The Ottawa Chamber looks forward to another 160 years of sustainable city building

I consider myself lucky to live in one of the most beautiful cities in the world. Ottawa is a modern G7 capital with historic roots and a natural beauty seldom found in metropolitan centres; it’s a community made up of vibrant neighbourhoods, rural lands, and urban attractions, and offers four-season activities to suit residents and visitors alike.

Ian Faris, President and CEO Ottawa Chamber of Commerce MAR K HO LLERON

To remain a vibrant place to live and attract the best and brightest people requires a sharp focus on city building. We want to ensure that Ottawa is among the top places to live, work, and play and that we are paramount in terms of places to study, invest, and visit. Our business community is

actively playing its part to realize this goal. The Ottawa Chamber of Commerce turns 160 years old in June 2017. This milestone not only commemorates over a century and a half of business advocacy, but also speaks to our ability to safeguard Ottawa business interests and get things done. From helping to launch the Ottawa Winter Carnival—now known as Winterlude—in the late 19th century, to founding the Canadian Tulip Festival with famed photographer Malak Karsh in the early 1950s, to advocating for Light Rail Transit development in the 21st century, the Ottawa Chamber is committed to city building. We advocate for smart infrastructure development and investment that will continue to make our city a jobs creator and economic growth generator for decades to come. Sustainability is at the centre of smart development and growth. We must ensure that we are at the forefront of green thinking as we compete in the low carbon economy of the future. The Ottawa Chamber’s environment and sustainability committee is leading the way in Ottawa, ensuring that our future direction keeps us on track to compete nationally and internationally. This edition of Capital illustrates that commitment and direction, and the steps that others in our community are taking to support it. As Ottawa’s independent voice for business, we look forward to continuing to work with our members and economic development stakeholders to build a community that continues to thrive, is equipped to compete against other heavyweights in the future economy, and provides for the type of community that we have enjoyed for over 160 years.

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FROM THE EDITOR

Capital It’s Not Easy Being Green—Or Is It? THINGS THAT SHOULD BE SIMPLE ARE SOMETIMES THE HARDEST TO DO. In principle, developing an issue of

Capital magazine dedicated to the environment should have been easy. There’s no shortage of stories in the Ottawa business community about initiatives that companies are taking to build sustainability into their work. Even so, putting this issue together raised some challenging questions. What’s the thread that links these stories together? What perspectives can we share without rehashing old clichés? In truth, while our community is doing many amazing things to support the environment, we still have a long way to go and it can be hard to talk about the environment without generating eye rolls from people who aren’t interested in another lecture about what they “should” be doing. Our work on this edition showed that many business leaders in this city care deeply about building a truly sustainable business. And as we probed different story angles, we realized how much Ottawa’s stories about sustainability connect to others themes that we’ve examined in earlier issues of Capital. Innovation—the focus of our inaugural issue last summer—is everywhere and it takes different forms. When it comes to attracting skilled labour, which we explored in our second issue, employers increasingly recognize that new hires are looking for more than just a job; they’re looking for quality of life. Our most recent issue celebrated of all that Ottawa has to offer, and challenged us to show our pride. The stories in this issue connect all of these themes. From global companies to local start-ups, Ottawa businesses offer proof that being innovative can happen on every scale, whether or not your business offers a strictly environmental service. Our natural environment is a huge asset for companies recruiting new talent, but employees also want to work for organizations that care about doing the right thing, for today and for the future. And as we imagine that future, we have an opportunity to be more aspirational and visionary in what we aim for. Does that sound lofty? Maybe so, but as Councillor David Chernushenko says in our “Creating Ottawa’s Greenprint” story, people love to get behind bold ideas. Since sustainability is all about long-term success, isn’t that something we can all rally around? Maybe being green isn’t that difficult after all.

The magazine about doing business in Ottawa, created by the Ottawa Chamber of Commerce in partnership with gordongroup. OTTAWA CHAMBER OF COMMERCE 328 Somerset St W, Ottawa, ON K2P 0J9 Phone: 613-236-3631 www.ottawachamber.ca President & CEO Ian Faris Director of Communications Kenny Leon PUBLISHER gordongroup 334 Churchill Ave. N, Ottawa, ON K1Z 5B9 Phone : 613-234-8468 info@gordongroup.com Executive Editor Kaarina Stiff Contributors Barbara Balfour Jeff Buckstein Alison Larabie Chase Matt Curtis

Cory Galbraith Tamara Micner Leo Valiquette

Creative Director Leslie Miles Art Director Kelly Read-Lyon Project Manager Terry McMillan SALES For advertising rates and information, please contact: Director of Advertising Sales Colleen Hayes Phone: 613-234-8468 / 312 chayes@gordongroup.com Advertising Sales Lesley Bertrand DISTRIBUTION AND MEMBERSHIP Director of Membership Services, Ottawa Chamber of Commerce Alexandra Walsh Phone: 613-236-3631 / 127 alexandra.walsh@ottawachamber.ca www.capitalmag.ca

ISSN 2371-333X. All rights reserved. Any reproduction of the contents without prior written authorization from the publisher is strictly prohibited. PM 43136012. Capital is published three times a year: winter, spring/summer, and fall. Printed in Canada.

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SAMANTHA V ES SIO S

Kaarina Stiff, Executive Editor Capital Magazine

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CAPITAL CONTEXT

BRIAN FOODY President and CEO of Iogen

Clean Technology: The Future is Now Ottawa companies have already blazed different trails BY L EO VA L I QUE T TE

MAR K HO LLERON

WITH A WORLD-LEADING

technology sector and a growing need to be ready for a low-carbon future, where does Ottawa stand on the clean tech spectrum? According to Invest Ottawa, our city is home to more than 240 clean tech companies that employ more than 5,300 people. Clean tech is old hat for some of those companies, while others are just getting started. The good news is that the opportunities are growing. Iogen Corporation and Waterotor Energy Technologies are both making waves in global markets with

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sustainable solutions to pressing environmental issues, and show that Ottawa is well established as a place where clean tech can thrive. Ending our addiction to fossil fuels Since 1986, Iogen has pioneered cellulosic technology, to create renewable biofuels from agricultural and household organic waste and wean us from our addiction to fossil fuels. Key to Iogen’s success has been coupling innovation with global partnerships. Today it has a $12-billion joint venture in

Brazil, called Raizen, to convert sugar cane waste into biofuel. Cellulosic biofuel could replace over 30 percent of U.S. petroleum consumption for transportation, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by up to 90 percent compared to gasoline. Iogen is on track to become the number two producer in the world. While the biofuel industry suffered a setback with the 2008 financial crisis and the subsequent collapse of global oil prices, Iogen president and CEO Brian J. Foody remains bullish on his industry’s outlook over the next decade.

5 Keys to Make Ottawa a Global Leader in Clean Tech 1 Innovation 2 Global partnerships 3 Sound engineering 4 Strong patents 5 C  ompelling value proposition

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The Dokis First Nation owns 40 percent of the Okikendawt Power facility, a run of the river hydro project on the French River.

Clean energy projects offer a different way to invest BY MAT T CU RT I S

An increasing number of savvy investors are turning to renewable energy to generate a healthy return on their investments. For organizations like the Ottawa Renewable Energy Co-op (OREC) and Lumos Clean Energy Advisors, that’s good news for the environment and their bottom line. OREC is a solar-focused renewable energy co-operative with a community-owner model that developed in response to demand for local green-energy investment opportunities. Since 2012, OREC has attracted more than 700 members, who are eligible to purchase securities that are used to fund OREC’s solar projects. Its fifth and most recent investment offering, which closed in April this year, generated $1.99 million. “Every dollar invested in community-power projects

“I would see these kinds of fuels being able to penetrate maybe 10 percent of the U.S. market—that’s more than Canada’s entire gasoline consumption,” he says. “We will see improvements in technology, we will see access to new feedstocks and I think we are going to see a lot of growth.”

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generates up to two dollars on a province-wide level,” said OREC general manager Janice Ashworth. “Profits are distributed locally to members proportionate to their investment so all of the earnings stay in Eastern Ontario.” OREC enters into 20-year lease agreements with partnering property owners to install solar renewable energy systems on their land or rooftops. Once the projects are in place, electricity is sold to the grid through Ontario’s Feed-in Tariff program, which provides a guaranteed rate for each kilowatt-hour (kWh) of electricity produced. This allows OREC to repay members, and offer a healthy return on investment. OREC currently has 13 projects on the tops of schools, non-profit housing, and private warehouses and barns around the city, and four new projects are expected to start generating power in June. Its generating capacity will reach 1.7 MW by

But success hinges on two things: the United States maintaining its commitments to renewable fuels, and Canada’s federal and provincial governments moving ahead with plans to develop new standards for low-carbon fuels that will help expand their use.

the end of summer 2017, which will place OREC among the top five largest renewable energy co-ops by generating capacity. There are currently 96 co-ops in Ontario, taking on an increasing diversity of projects. Ashworth—who was honoured this year with a Forty Under 40 award from the Ottawa Chamber of Commerce and the Ottawa Business Journal— is especially proud of OREC’s project at Maurice Lapointe School in Kanata. The 190 kW rooftop solar array, which marked Ottawa’s 1000th solar installation—was installed for $745,000 using Ontario-made equipment and local labour and is expected to generate $120,000 in revenues to the school and produce nearly 260,000 kWh per year. Ottawa-based Lumos Clean Energy Advisors also works with communities, providing advice on how to form partnerships with clean energy developers, utilities, and finance firms. With a focus on advising

Reinventing hydro-electric power At Waterotor, CEO and CTO Fred Ferguson is also hoping to remake the world with a green solution that has been decades in the making. You may remember him as the man behind the Magnus Spherical Airship in

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First Nations, Metis, and Inuit groups, Lumos aims to build capacity for self-reliance within Indigenous communities. “[Communities] are looking for expertise on what’s fair, what makes sense, and how to make projects happen,” says Lumos president Christopher Henderson, who takes a holistic, long-term approach to the company’s work. “We almost act like a merchant bank, where our returns occur when the First Nations get their returns.” Interest in the field is growing, and so is the demand for expertise. Last year, Lumos introduced a training program that Henderson calls a “clean energy intensive MBA for Indigenous communities.” This three-month intensive program is aimed at young Indigenous people to help them realize the benefits of renewable energy and build skills in the field.

the 1980s. The design featured a large, round, helium-filled sphere that rotated backwards as the airship flew forward, producing lift. In the 2000s, Ferguson repurposed the same concept to create Magenn Air Rotor Systems (MARS). These tethered “floating

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LUM OS CLEAN E NERGY ADVISOR S

Renewable Returns


CAPITAL CONTEXT

generators” rotated in response to wind to generate electricity. But it’s difficult to generate economically feasible power from wind. Water, on the other hand, contains 830 times more energy than wind. With Waterotor, Ferguson and his team have developed and validated a design that can generate consistent power around the clock from a regular flow of water in a stream, river or lake moving as slow as three kilometers per hour (kph). That means almost any slow moving body of water can become an economical power source. Other competing technologies need a water flow of at least 9.5 kph. It’s a huge market opportunity Waterotor is well-positioned to dominate thanks to sound engineering, strong patents, and a compelling value proposition. A 20-kilowatt Waterotor unit, with the cost amortized over 10 years, can generate power at a cost of only 5 cents per kilowatt hour (kWh). Compare

that to wind, which costs from 6.5 to 21 cents per kWh, according to Ontario’s Independent Electricity System Operator. Orders have already come in from the United States and Waterotor is also in talks overseas. The Indonesian government, for example, wants 100,000 units to wean its fishing industry off a dependence on gasoline generators for refrigeration. “Things are really moving ahead,” Ferguson says. “By this time next year, I expect at least one major manufacturer to have bought into this company.” As other companies pursue a future in the clean tech sector, for some firms the future is already here, and they’re making the most of it. Leo Valiquette is a freelance writer and marketing communications/media relations consultant who lives in Stittsville. He is the former editor of the Ottawa Business Journal.

FRED FERGUSON CEO and CTO of Waterotor

Finding a Greener Way to Do Business

TOP : MARK HO LLERON; BOT TOM : YOUR CR EDIT UNION

At Your Credit Union, the business of the day isn’t clean energy, but financial services. Still, this local institution, which serves about 11,000 members in Ottawa and Cornwall, is doing its part for a healthier planet. One of the first steps YourCU took was to join Carbon613. This initiative of the EnviroCentre helps member organizations access programs and services to help them set emission reduction targets. YourCU’s goal

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is to reduce its carbon footprint by 20 percent over 10 years.

YourCU on this path, the entire organization has embraced it.

YourCU is working to achieve this goal by partnering with clean energy supplier BullFrog Power for electricity and natural gas at all six of its branches.

“It was exciting to see how on-board the staff were,” he said. “It is very much a shared commitment.”

President and CEO Joel Lalonde is a big supporter of greener practices—he drives an electric car and his home is also powered by Bullfrog. But while it was management that decided to put

What is his advice to other businesses looking to make a positive difference? “Keep it simple first and foremost,” he said. “This isn’t part of our core business, but it is obviously important to our legacy.”

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CEO TALK

“You need to start with a true ‘triple bottom line’ approach of people, planet, and profit. It has to be a core principle.”

JEFF WESTEINDE Managing partner, Zibi, and partner in Windmill Developments

Green Is Good for Business Four Ottawa CEOs talk sustainability BY A L I S ON L A R A BI E CH A S E

WE ASKED SOME OF OTTAWA’S TOP LEADERS

about their green business practices, and their advice on how to build sustainability into the way we work.

MAR K HO LLERON

Capital: How do you demonstrate corporate social responsibility/environmental sustainability in your company’s projects and day-to-day work? Jeff Westeinde, managing partner, Zibi, and partner in Windmill Developments: At Zibi, I’m proud that we’re building Canada’s first One Planet-rated development. The

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big difference between LEED and One Planet is that it adds a healthy layer of social sustainability—things like happiness and community engagement. Ross Meredith, general manager, Westin Ottawa: The Westin Ottawa has been committed to demonstrating sustainability in all of our decisions, including capital improvements where conscious sustainable efforts are made, and our “green and clean” room in our cafeteria where every associate ensures that waste is put into the right waste compartment.

Michael Arno, co-CEO, Superna: We acquired an existing industrial building and completely renovated it to make it more efficient. Our footprint in terms of pure energy consumption went down to 10 percent of what it had been. That’s obviously reducing our carbon footprint. Our power bill went down by 75 percent. That represents adding four or five new employees to our team. Capital: What aspect of your company’s sustainability practices are you most proud of?

RM: Although we are very proud of our capital investments, we are just as proud of some of our “low-hanging fruit” projects: using Energy Star-rated appliances, installing motion and thermal sensors, converting over 200 exit signs to LED, low-flow aerators on showerheads and faucets, and air-assisted toilets that use only 1.6 liters per flush. JW: We have developed a zero-carbon strategy for heating and cooling, which is like the holy grail. We’re doing it in partnership with Hydro Ottawa. It’s still in the early stages but showing great promise. We hope that we’ll be able to implement it for Zibi.

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“Promote your environmental stewardship through your social channels. Consumers will switch brands to one that is associated with a good cause, given similar price or quality.”

ROSS MEREDITH General manager, Westin Ottawa

flushing out toilets with drinking water is huge, but nearly impossible to get away from.

Capital: What challenges have you overcome when implementing sustainability policies and practices?

MA: We’ve looked at solar over time. Our building footprint is about 6,000 square feet and we have a flat roof. Before, it didn’t look efficient, the cost was too high, but as consumption has scaled down we’re going to revisit that now.

JW: At Zibi, we would like to use grey water for basically all our non-potable water. The regulatory system requires that it run essentially like a municipal waste treatment system; it needs a treatment backup. The cost and environmental impact of

RM: We have been very fortunate to have incredible ownership that has invested in our drive for sustainability. You also need to have engaged associates. We need to put forth the belief that we are pushing this agenda because it is the right thing to

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Mara Taracievicz, co-CEO, Superna: I’m most proud that we don’t have to ask people to do things—they see it as the way they should be [doing things]. I don’t think we ever had a direct conversation about it.


DEPARTMENT SLUG TK

TAKE YOUR MEETING TO NEW HEIGHTS “I’m most proud that we don’t have to ask people to do things—they see it as the way they should be.” –MT

“You have to keep an eye on what is new. You have to be curious and keep investigating.” –MA

Teambuilding • Staff Appreciation • Company BBQs

The natural choice for your event. Conferences • Meetings • Day Retreats • Banquets MARA TARACIEVICZ co-CEO, Superna

do for the environment. If you can empower your team, the rest will take care of itself.

MAR K HO LLERON

Capital: What advice would you give to leaders who want to kick up their efforts in this arena? JW: You need to start with a true “triple bottom line” approach of people, planet, and profit. It has to be a core principle; you can’t do it as an afterthought. If you operate your business around a profit bottom line and then say, “it sure would be nice to do more socially or environmentally,” it doesn’t work as well. It’s like trying to do aftermarket fixes to a product— it’s nowhere near as effective.

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MICHAEL ARNO co-CEO, Superna

RM: Do some research and take advantage of the many different incentive programs offered. Involve your associates, educate them, and make them feel part of the process. Promote your environmental stewardship through your social channels. Consumers will switch brands to one that is associated with a good cause, given similar price or quality. MA: You have to keep an eye on what is new. You have to be curious and keep investigating. Alison Larabie Chase is an Ottawa writer and editor who is deeply devoted to clarity, cooking, and the Oxford comma.

300 ch Dunlop, Chelsea QC J9B 2N3 e. eboucher@campfortune.com t. 819-827-1717 ext 2241

campfortune.com

Only 15 minutes from downtown Ottawa


BUILDING THE CAPITAL

The lobby at Alt Hotel

Rolling Out From the Centre Ottawa Centre EcoDistrict programs get citywide traction

WHEN YOU STEP INTO THE LOBBY of Ottawa’s Alt Hotel

on Slater Street you can immediately see the effort that’s been invested to minimize its ecological footprint. From LED lighting to the furniture selection, every decision was made to make a difference. Alt Hotel—a boutique eco-hotel—is situated in the Ottawa Centre EcoDistrict (OCED), Canada’s first community certified as part of the EcoDistricts movement—a U.S.-based initiative that works to empower neighbourhoods to make scalable improvements towards sustainability. The OCED—which generally

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EcoDistrict

extends north to south from the Ottawa River to Gloucester Street and west to east from Bronson Avenue to the Rideau Canal—is among more than 300

EcoDistricts around the world that followed a rigorous certification framework that incorporates elements of health and well-being, connectivity,

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prosperity, place, resource regeneration, and living infrastructure. The Ottawa effort was launched in 2012 with a mission to make the downtown core more sustainable, socially vibrant, and attractive to businesses and organizations looking to relocate or expand. By working with local businesses and other community partners, OCED focused on issues involving waste, water, energy, and transportation to reduce the environmental footprint of activities in the downtown core. According to the OCED’s 2015 Sustainable Neighbourhood Action Plan, the district is home

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TOP : ALT HOTEL; BOT TOM : OT TAWA C ENTR E ECODISTRICT

BY J E FF BUCKSTE I N


DEPARTMENT SLUG TK

sustainability is in business’ best interest There’s more than one way to keep the lights on Energy Ottawa, a sister company of Hydro Ottawa, is the largest municipally owned producer of green power in the province of Ontario, with a generation capacity of 128 megawatts—enough renewable energy to power 107,000 homes annually. Here is a breakdown of where its renewable generating capacity comes from.

Hydroelectric Generation (116 megawatts/ 95,000 homes annually): Energy Ottawa owns 100 percent of the hydroelectric facilities at the Chaudière Falls site on both sides of the Ottawa River, including: •

 ix hydroelectric stations S at Chaudière Falls on the Ottawa River with a total capacity of 53.5 MW  ix hydroelectric stations in S Eastern Ontario with a total capacity of 8.3 MW  our hydroelectric stations F in upper New York State with a total capacity of 22.6 MW

Landfill Gas-to-Energy (10.2 megawatts/ 10,000 homes annually): Energy Ottawa owns majority shares in two landfill gas-toenergy facilities, which turn methane gas into renewable energy; combined, these facilities reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 280,000 tonnes a year: •

 landfill gas-to-energy plant A at the Trail Road Landfill with a capacity of 6 MW;

 landfill gas-to-energy plant A at the Laflèche Landfill in Moose Creek, ON with a capacity of 4.2 MW

Solar (2.3 megawatts/ 2,000 homes annually): Eight large solar generation systems are installed on municipal buildings, consisting of 8,861 solar panels

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BUILDING THE CAPITAL

ways to reduce the environmental impact of buildings. Progress is also evident in Alt’s attention to detail. As part of its eco-friendly design, Alt’s toilets are equipped with three-litre and six-litre dual flush valves to save water. Underground wells supply geo-thermal heating in the winter and cooling in the summer. LED lighting is motion activated in public areas, hallways, and guest rooms. And their purchasing decisions reflect their commitment to buy local as much as they can. “Our furniture is all Canadian—everything is made here, most of it in Quebec,” says Alt manager Jean Philip Dupré. “In our coffee shop, we have an in-house caterer that makes about 70 percent of the food we eat. Most of the rest is ordered

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Ottawa companies find active business building passive houses BY M AT T CURTI S

Passive houses might require a bigger upfront investment, but Ottawa-area builders are making them more affordable and attractive for people who want to build a sustainable home. Passive houses are structurally similar to conventional homes, but are designed to meet rigorous energy efficiency standards— typically requiring thicker walls and roofs, better insulated foundations, and specialized doors and windows. For a modest cost increase compared to a conventional new build, a passive home can substantially reduce a home’s energy bill. In addition to energy savings, passive homes are also more comfortable, thanks to improved temperature regulation and ventilation. “The cost to build passive is approximately five percent greater than conventional construction but the savings in operating costs translates to a cheaper way to live,” says Paul Kealey of EkoBuilt, an Ottawa-based custom home building company.

EkoBuilt has found success in their multi-level approach to simplifying passive construction. They offer plans, material kits, and construction services separately or altogether to clients. For Kealey, solar panels are an integral part of making passive homes make financial sense. He speculates that the return on investment based on energy bill savings could be as little as five years with a net-metered six-kilowatt solar array costing $18,000. Homes can be certified to the passive standard, or designed with the same key principles. Casey Grey, CEO of The Conscious Builder, recommends that we simply “build better” up front to generate longterm benefits. In a highly competitive housing market, he encourages clients to focus less on the certification and the upfront cost, and to look instead at what they can save month over month. “With the technology we have, if you plan it properly and have the proper team up front, you can be cash flow positive from the start,” Grey says.

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EKOBUILT

to a workforce of more than 90,000 people. And while it’s home to only 9,000 residents (and has the lowest density in the city), more than 100,000 people live within a 20-minute walk of the OCED. As a result, transportation issues were identified as a top priority. A key part of the EcoDistrict’s work was to bring people together. Don Grant, former executive director of the OCED, is proud of what they accomplished in Ottawa Centre. “We were able to establish a dialogue between businesses and government, and to assist the city in achieving some of its major objectives, including the improvement of cycling lanes and expansion of electric vehicle services to residents,” he says. In particular, he notes, they raised awareness about cycling, and


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CREATING OTTAWA’S

Can Ottawa become the greenest capital in the world?

ATHERINE MCKENNA, the federal Minister of Environment and Climate Change and MP for Ottawa Centre, was quite serious when she said it was time to make Ottawa the “greenest capital in the world.” It probably wasn’t the first time someone has suggested it. But this time, the challenge came from a local MP whose cabinet position makes her responsible for everything from negotiating federal GHG reduction targets to protecting Canada’s waterways. As a result, the missive she posted on Twitter last June gained more traction than it otherwise might have. But what does it mean to be the “greenest capital” and how do we measure it?

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“I think of it in three pillars,” says Minister McKenna. “Live, work, and play.” Whether the issue is water quality or GHG emissions, she says that every component of the environment is connected to every facet of our lives and there’s an economic imperative to view the environment as an opportunity to perform better across the board. The shift is starting to happen. With the implementation of Ontario’s cap-and-trade system for carbon emissions, the focus is turning to how companies can be more environmentally and economically sustainable, such as by identifying opportunities to save money by improving energy efficiency. For Minister McKenna, that’s exactly the point.

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MAR K HO LLERON

BY K A A R I N A STI FF


PHOTO CR EDIT TK

The Honourable Catherine McKenna, Minister of Environment and Climate Change C AP I TA L MAG.CA

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“We have an opportunity to be setting the green standard,” she says. In Ottawa, discussions about greening the city naturally gravitate to the improvements light rail is set to deliver. When phase two of Ottawa’s Light Rail Transit system is complete (the current target is 2023), the city estimates that 70 percent of residents will live within five kilometres of the rail system. “We need to finish that last five kilometres,” Minister McKenna says, by looking at “what

we develop, and where we develop,” and leveraging the city’s cycling infrastructure. Ottawa City Councillor David Chernushenko, who represents Capital Ward, has been a strong proponent of the city’s efforts to expand and improve bike lanes. He’s behind the concept of McKenna’s challenge, but notes that there’s a lot of work to do. “There are great examples to show what we’re doing, but we have the sense that we’re doing better than we actually are,”

Carbon Pricing: What You Need to Know What is carbon pricing? When burned, carbon-based fossil fuels emit carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases into the Earth’s atmosphere, which contributes to climate change. Governments can place a price on burning carbon-based fossil fuels to encourage industry and consumers to reduce consumption. There are two forms of carbon pricing: cap-and-trade systems and carbon taxes. Each Canadian province must adopt one of these by January 2018, or the federal government will impose one. A carbon tax is levied by a government on industries and fuel distributors, using a set dollar amount for each tonne of carbon emitted. The industry or distributor must pay the tax, but can pass the cost to consumers. Alberta and British Columbia have introduced a carbon tax. In a cap-and-trade system, a government places a cap on the maximum amount of carbon (by tonne) that can be emitted in its jurisdiction; the amount is typically lowered over time to meet its reduction targets. The government also sets individual caps on organizations that burn

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fossil fuels; however, those organizations can buy and sell emission rights to and from one another. This creates a so-called carbon “market.” Ontario introduced a cap and trade system in 2017 with an initial emissions cap of 143,332,000 tonnes. In its first auction in April 2017, “allowances”, or permits, sold for approximately $18 per tonne. In 2018, Ontario will enter an existing market with Quebec and California. What it means for your business The cost of fossil fuels (for example, gasoline for transporting products or natural gas for heating) may increase. You are allowed to pass those costs to your customers through price increases. The cost of materials you purchase (such as food or fabric) may also increase, if the supplier has passed along their increased transportation or production costs. To offset these increases, business owners can seek alternative forms of energy, purchase locally produced raw materials to reduce transportation costs, and implement other efficiency measures.

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he says. “We have all of the ingredients to be the greenest capital, but people need to believe that we can.” He says there are opportunities for Ottawa to become a real leader, particularly when it comes to developing a “smart grid” to improve the movement and storage of energy and retrofitting existing buildings. He cites research suggesting that in 2050, 70 percent of the buildings in place now will still be here. “There’s a huge opportunity to create local jobs to retrofit those buildings, and that money stays here in the community.” However, in the absence of strict green standards, Canada doesn’t have a robust domestic market to manufacture all the components that go into green buildings— including specialty windows and doors, which means those products are often purchased and shipped from Europe. “We need to dispense with the idea that high green building standards impose costs,” Councillor Chernushenko says, noting that other countries like Sweden and Japan have used the opportunity to drive innovation. “There’s a transition where we just need to level the playing field.” At the same time, a growing number of local companies are finding success in clean technology—according to Invest Ottawa, the city is home to 240 clean tech companies with more than 5,300 employees—and Minister McKenna sees enormous potential to grow. In its 2017 budget, the federal government announced plans for a “smart cities” challenge. The plan—which includes $300 million over 11 years for a Smart Cities Challenge Fund—would invite proposals for “digitally connected technology, including greener buildings, smart roads and energy systems, and advanced digital connections for home and businesses.” As a world-leading high-tech hub, Ottawa should be well positioned to succeed. “We have vibrant businesses [in Ottawa] that are committed to sustainability,” she says. “We need to brand it that way.” That branding is catching on, both in the tourism industry and with employers who emphasize Ottawa’s natural environment and the opportunities to hike, cycle, and paddle without having to leave the city. “We have all the conditions, we have the building blocks; we need the vision,” says Minister McKenna. “We need a greenprint for Ottawa that lays out what we want Ottawa to be, and make the economic case for it.” Councillor Chernushenko agrees. “Citizens get excited when you make bold moves; it’s something people can get behind,” he says, but he also suggests that it’s less

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Measuring Ottawa’s Carbon Footprint

2,135,000

Top emission sources by category:

Total emissions (in tonnes) of C02e by all Ottawa business:

Top 3 emission sources by sector (tonnes CO2e):

276,500

ANDREW BALFOUR

Ottawa City Councillor David Chernushenko

about judging and more about just doing. “We need to be the greenest capital we can be.” The challenge now is to bring everyone together to make it happen. Kaarina Stiff is an Ottawa-based writer and editor, and former public service executive. She specializes in making big ideas accessible to a broad audience.

31%

49%

14%

6%

Transportation

Natural gas

Accommodation and food services

268,300 Construction

219,900 Office-based businesses

Waste

Electricity

SOURCE: OT TAWA BUSINES S AND ENERGY EMIS SIONS PROFILE (2017), CLIMATE SMART.

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Amber Hall enjoys traveling to meet the people behind the coffee that Equator roasts.

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BOTTOMS BY B A RB ARA B AL FOUR

UP!

How a local coffee roaster generates sustainable benefits

MAK HOL LERON

I

T WAS A DEGREE in interna-

tional development that first planted the seed for an Ottawa Valley coffee roastery that has changed the lives of thousands of people around the world. Learning about the exploitation of small-scale farmers and their surrounding environment by the coffee industry made a huge impression on Craig Hall, who was studying the subject for his master’s degree at Trent University. So, he and his wife Amber decided to uproot themselves from Deep River, Ont., where Amber’s teaching position was based, so they could do something about it.  They started Equator Coffee in Arnprior in 1998, offering 100 percent fair trade, organic coffee with the goal of roasting fresh and delivering exactly to order without having any waste from week to week.

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They source through their own roastermember co-op, Cooperative Coffees, as one of 23 members from North America. Not only do they work directly with farmers, but they have also personally visited cooperatives in Guatemala, Nicaragua, Mexico, the Dominican Republic, Peru, Rwanda, Kenya, Ethiopia, and Uganda.  Over the last two decades, Equator has supported hundreds of local initiatives and continues to donate 10 cents of every pound of coffee they sell to SchoolBOX, helping to buy annual school supplies and build classrooms for children in coffee farming communities in northern Nicaragua.  In 2016, they were awarded the Best Ottawa Business Award for performance in philanthropy by the Ottawa Chamber of Commerce and the Ottawa Business Journal. They plan to expand to their third retail location in Ottawa later this year.

“Our goal when we started was to make use of this consumable that people could buy in the north while benefitting developing countries in the south at the same time,” says Amber. “That’s where the name Equator comes from—equating the benefit for all, including the environment.  “When we began, the fair trade certification movement was just emerging and we wanted to take part in it. We only work with small farmers who harvest the traditional way with organic methods, and the coffee is better as result.  “In contrast, conventional coffee companies force coffee cherries to ripen early with the use of chemicals. They also use a mechanical means of picking. The environmental impact of cutting down the rainforest, and the water damaged by those chemicals in the soil, has a huge effect on the farmers.”

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Barbara Balfour is a freelance journalist, TV host, and producer based in Ottawa.

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Equator doesn’t just buy organic coffee; they are also a certified organic facility and undergo an annual audit to ensure no chemicals are used and pest control is organic and humane. “We are certified all the way to the bag that the coffee is being sold in and we guarantee we can trace it back to the origin in case we had to do a recall.”  Equator also sources only compostable cups and lids and repulpable bags that slowly biodegrade; they also make their coffee grounds available for customers’ gardens upon request.  “We wanted to create a company that doesn’t do any harm to the environment, the people we hire, or the community we sell to. Every stage benefits everyone along the chain,” says Amber.  “We have four children, and we don’t want to harm the world we are leaving behind for them.”


Gatineau Park covers 361 square kilometres of conservation space, just 15 minutes from Parliament Hill.

BY TA M AR A MIC N ER

N A CITY with more than 850 parks, 800 kilometres of biking trails and 400 kilometres of cross-country ski trails, you could say that Ottawa has nature right in our house—not just our backyard. Increasingly, it’s a draw that both attracts and retains world-class employees, and businesses are recognizing its value. This year’s Bike to Work Month, organized by the non-profit EnviroCentre and the City of Ottawa, had a record

I

200 workplace teams taking part throughout May (up from 170 last year). EnviroCentre notes that cycling is on the rise as a way to commute in Ottawa, with almost three percent of Ottawans now cycling to and from work—one of the highest rates among cities in Canada. And cyclists are one of the fastest-growing road users in the capital. “Employees are considering choices about commuting in a way that we haven’t seen in previous generations, and employers in Ottawa are taking note of that,”

WEEKEND WARRIORS OR WAY OF LIFE?

Ottawa’s access to nature is more than just a luxury—it’s a selling point

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THIS PAGE: ENV IROC ENTRE; OPPO SITE PAGE: NATIO NAL C APITAL COMM IS SION

Ottawa’s segregated bike lanes have encouraged more people to cycle downtown and increased safety for cyclists.

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says Angela Plant, program coordinator at EnviroCentre. With the average commute in Ottawa being 29 minutes by car, that adds up to a significant amount: as many as 20 hours per month. EnviroCentre is advocating for more “complete streets” in the city to encourage more people of varied ages, genders, and abilities to enjoy and take advantage of active transportation options, such as cycling and walking. With many Ottawans living within five to 10 kilometres of their workplace, active transportation is well within reach—and desirable—for many employees. “Businesses are often shocked at how many of their employees that covers,” Plant says of the five-kilometre radius. She adds that, in addition to decreasing a business’s carbon footprint, active transportation boosts employees’ productivity and morale. “From an employer’s perspective, there are multiple wins associated with encouraging active transportation,” she says. “There are a lot of employers in the region who realize how important active transportation is to employee attraction and retention. Especially for a younger workforce, we know that these are priorities.” She also notes that encouraging carpooling as another alternative mode of transportation facilitates social connections among employees. Outside commuting hours, Ottawa’s green spaces are also a key asset that make people want to live and work here, whether it’s traversing the Greenbelt or Gatineau Park. Both overseen by the National Capital Commission (NCC), the Greenbelt is the largest publicly owned, urban open land area in the world, and Gatineau Park sees 2.65 million visits every year with a satisfaction rating of 98 percent. Christie Spence, director of Québec’s Urban Lands and Gatineau Park at the NCC, says that among her team at work and the people they speak to, the access to nature that’s available in Ottawa, and the quality of life that creates, is a major reason that people move here and stay. She herself moved back to Ottawa, after living in Vancouver and the Yukon, partly because of the access to green space and outdoor recreation. The NCC’s office in Chelsea borders Gatineau Park, and she can see birds and groundhogs outside her office window. “People will say that they came to this region in part to experience that, and those who are here really, really use it intensively and value it,” she says.“We always have requests for more bike paths, more routes, more trails, more activities within the

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Environment and Health Go Hand-in-Hand BY A LISON L A R A BI E CH A S E

People spend a significant amount of their waking life at their jobs, which take place in a variety of locations including office buildings, factories, hospitals, schools, labs, and other institutions. But many of us never consider how our physical workplace environment might be affecting our health. Sarah Young, program and outreach coordinator at the Ottawa Integrative Cancer Centre (OICC), says the effect of an individual’s environment on their health and cancer risk can be significant. “From the research we’ve done, there are a number of links between one’s lifetime exposure to certain chemicals in our environment and disease,” says Young. “It’s not only exhaust from vehicles and industrial pollution; we are being affected and potentially harmed by products, including personal care and household cleaners.” To further their work between these links, the OICC is opening a new wing this fall that will focus on environmental health. What can an employer do to mitigate these issues? For one, they can mandate the use of all-natural cleaning products in the workplace. “Be aware of the benefits of reduced chemicals coming into the space,” she says. “We’re surrounded by thousands of different chemicals that are used on a daily basis in all the products we buy and consume.” The air employees breathe is another potential risk factor. “In Ottawa we have a lot of people working in older buildings where the air quality is bad,” she adds. “If an employer can retrofit their space to improve air flow and quality, that would be amazing.” She also suggests providing carbon-filtered drinking water, offering wellness programs such as yoga classes, and encouraging people to get outside and move more. The OICC offers a workshop to help people become informed when buying personal care and cleaning products, and Young encourages companies to participate. For more information, visit www.oicc.ca.

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OT TAWA CIT Y RAF TING

park, and winter trails” to encourage sustainable transportation in winter, she adds. “I know that’s a draw for my team as well, to be able to work in the park, to be able to have these sort of lifestyle opportunities, to live close to where they work: all those things are very valuable to them,” she says. Businesses such as Ottawa City Rafting—a sister company of Wilderness Tours, located about 1.5 hours from the city—have also seized on opportunities to capitalize on the city’s natural environment. The company, which offers rafting tours on the Ottawa River just steps away from downtown at Britannia Beach, won the 2015 Ottawa Tourism Best New Business Award. Jim Antonakos, operations manager  at Ottawa City Rafting, believes we should be proud of the city’s waterways and natural wonders. “People in Ottawa don’t realize the outdoor mecca we live around,” he says, whether it comes to mountain biking, skiing, sea kayaking or rock climbing. “We don’t know how lucky we are.” Tamara Micner is a Canadian journalist and playwright, and former Google communications specialist, based in London, England.


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STARTING UP IN OTTAWA

Breaking Ground Rethinking how we buy our food BY BA R BA R A BA L FOUR

ONLY 10 YEARS AGO, a sustainable business was considered novel and cutting-edge. Thanks to increasingly discerning consumers, the reaction many businesses get nowadays is not so much admiration but more, “Well, why wouldn’t you be?” That is especially true for small businesses with a personal connection to the community, says Mischa Kaplan, who along with his wife Sarah, co-owns health food markets Rainbow Foods and Market Organics. “It’s easier for us to engage in these practices, and so we carry more responsibility to be a leader in these areas,” says Kaplan, who was nationally recognized

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by the Canadian Heath Food Association with the Sustainable Retailer award in 2016. “In addition to being more engaged with employees and minimizing our carbon footprint, being sustainable also differentiates us from a business perspective. Our customers see more value in shopping with us than with bigger box retail.” The Kaplans see themselves in a partnership role with about 150 vendors, many of whom are local, and work hard to be among the first in Ottawa to carry a new item or promote a new venture. “We were one of the first to carry Backyard Edibles, which rents space in people’s

backyards and transforms them into productive market gardens,” says Kaplan. “In the summer months, 90 percent of our produce comes from the 613 area, and at least 20 percent of the boxed products, including health and beauty, are locally made.” Rising demand from consumers for eco-friendly and sustainable products is changing not only what we shop for but also how we shop. Tapping into a growing trend in Europe, schoolteacher turned entrepreneur Valerie LeLoup is bringing a zero-waste lifestyle to Ottawa with the opening of her brand new shop, Nu, in Hintonburg this summer.

LeLoup adopted the lifestyle only a year and a half ago after reading the book, “Zero Waste Home,” by Bea Johnson, the pioneer guru of zero-waste living. “The overarching message was about reinventing consumption in a minimalistic way. You ask yourself, ‘Do I really need this?’ If so, how can you satisfy the need in a way that doesn’t negatively impact the environment?” She began avoiding single-use and plastic packaging and bought her groceries only in bulk. But the lack of a one-stop shop quickly grew tiring—so LeLoup decided to open her own. The 1,400-square foot shop will offer a range of items—from

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cleaning products to produce, condiments, and prepared foods—in bulk. Customers are encouraged to bring their own containers, although cotton bags and glass jars will also be available for purchase. “Many products are available in bulk, but the target market is often hotels and restaurants rather than the general public, so it’s been a matter of finding them,” says LeLoup. “Working with local suppliers has given us the opportunity to bring back those larger containers to them so everything gets re-injected into the cycle.” To minimize produce waste, a local chef will come in every night to collect overripe fruits and vegetables and process them into a dish that will be available the next day in the prepared meal section. “The most rewarding part about this lifestyle is that it helps you escape the materialistic craze,” says LeLoup. “You suddenly realize what

makes you happy is not the latest gadget, or a fancy car. What makes you happy is life experiences.” The key to ensuring the longevity of the sustainability movement lies in engaging the next generation. And when that time comes, Karen Secord, director of the Parkdale Food Centre, wants to ensure the next generation is physically—and financially—fit enough to pick up the reins. After attending a nine-month residency on addressing economic inequality at the Banff Centre for the Arts and Creativity in 2015, Secord launched Growing Futures in Ottawa the following year. The social enterprise teaches children to grow fresh vegetables, while matching them up with local businesses who teach them about entrepreneurship, and purchase their harvests at market price. With the help of innovative vertical planters in which veggies

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PARKDALE FOOD CENTRE

STARTING UP IN OTTAWA

Parkdale Food Centre

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can be grown year-round—four of which are housed at the Innovation Centre at Bayview Yards—kids are cultivating herbs for Culture Kombucha, making pesto for Thyme and Again, and beating out cupcakes with kale chips in fundraising sales. It’s an ingenious way for schools and youth facilities to integrate food and financial literacy into their programming, while helping support the Parkdale Food Centre, says Sonya Shorey, communications director for Invest Ottawa. “Kids are using this technology to sell produce to visitors and tenants in the Innovation Centre,” says Shorey. It’s a novel approach to encourage entrepreneurship, address hunger, and give back to the community in ways we could not have anticipated.”

Secord believes these skills will also lead to better academic performance and increased opportunities for kids. “If we do nothing, we will see more and more kids at the food bank 10 years from now, or in the health care system. This program takes away the mystery of entrepreneurship, and teaches kids that food doesn’t just appear at your table. “I have been incredibly blown away by the way that children are talking about business, how proud they are to be involved it. People told me, ‘Kids like canned pasta, not fruits and vegetables. I said, ‘I don’t think so. If you put good food in front of them, they will want it.’” Barbara Balfour is a freelance journalist, TV host, and producer based in Ottawa.

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THE LAST WORD

Abraham Maslow’s Tips for Self-Actualization BY CO RY G AL B RAI T H

H

E SAID FREUD WAS AN UNHAPPY OLD MAN who never con-

sidered the human spirit in the health of the mind. Abraham Maslow, who died in 1970, was a different kind of psychologist. Rather than studying what goes wrong with a person’s mind, he chose to study what made the mind right. He called this “self-actualization”— the point we reach when we’re realizing our full potential as a human being. You know you’re living to your full potential when you experience “a-ha” moments of joy, discovery, and connection. Self-actualization is not a place where you arrive. Instead, it’s a never-ending state of “becoming.” But Maslow had one caveat. He believed that self-actualization—being able to release negative thoughts so we can see our true value—is either not possible, or becomes difficult, if basic human needs are not met. These include the need to feel safe, to sleep and eat, to love and be loved, and the need for self-esteem. Therein lies the problem. In today’s society, those basic needs are not being met for many people. According to Maslow, until that happens, true self-actualization is hard to come by. And because he knew just how elusive those needs can be, he estimated that only two percent of people will ever reach the stage of self-actualization. Maslow created this list of behaviors to help us get there. How many are you practicing?

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Abraham Maslow chose to study what made the mind right. He called this “self-actualization”— the point we reach when we’re realizing our full potential as a human being.

 xperience life like a child, E with full absorption and concentration • Try new things instead of sticking to safe paths • Listen to your own feelings in evaluating experiences instead of the voice of tradition, authority, or the majority • Avoid pretense (‘game playing’) and instead, be honest • Be prepared to be unpopular if your views do not coincide with those of the majority • Take responsibility for your life rather than blaming society or others •

Maslow studied Lincoln, Einstein, and other great people of history and said that by practicing the above behaviors, they developed the following self-actualizing characteristics:  olerated uncertainty T Accepted themselves and others for who they were • Had a sense of humour • Showed creativity • Showed genuine concern for the welfare of humanity • Appreciated basic life-experiences such as enjoying a country walk • •

S PRI NG / S U MMER 2 01 7 | THE BUSINES S MAG A ZINE O F THE OT TAWA CH A M BE R OF COM M E RCE

 stablished deep satisfying E interpersonal relationships with a few people • Developed strong moral and ethical standards •

I n many ways, Maslow’s prescription for self-actualization is about looking inside yourself—getting to know you, accepting what you learn, and moving on. In today’s world of distraction, taking the time to know yourself is more important than ever. Self-actualization will ground you, allowing your inner calm to shine. Cory Galbraith is a former journalist turned entrepreneur. He is CEO of Ottawa-based Webcast Canada, a leading online streaming company.

C AP ITALM AG .C A


Capital Magazine Spring/Summer 2017  
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