Wrong, Chuck Bennett told a full house at this week's Frontiers in the Environment event: "We have a system problem - the cradle-to-grave industrial paradigm."
Vice president of Earth and community care at Aveda, an international personal care products company, Bennett believes in - and pursues - a better way, based on the principles and practices made famous a decade ago by Michael Braungart and Bill McDonough in their book Cradle to Cradle: Remaking the Way we Make Things.
The Cradle to Cradle approach, Bennett told his audience, is built on three premises:
Waste = Food
Use Current Solar Energy
Waste = food, Bennett said, is a matter of mimicking nature, where the products of one activity become the inputs for another. In nature's economy, he said, materials are continuously recycled; Cradle to Cradle brings this thinking to the industrial economy as well.
Using current solar energy is a matter of tapping the sun's resources now rather than relying on the limited supplies of fossil fuels. Celebrating diversity - a concept Bennett said is central to the Aveda brand - means valuing the richness inherent in biological, cultural and conceptual systems.
"All of this translates to a bigger vision for the company," Bennett said.
Like to learn more? Check out the video of Bennett's talk, "Cradle-to-Cradle: A Design Concept Whose Time Has Come?" here.