Ever wondered where all the cool products from Sustainable.co.za come from? We’d like to introduce to you Alan, the new products developer at Sustainable.co.za. We caught up with him at work to ask him a few questions about his background and his experience at Sustainable.co.za. Here’s what he had to say:
1. We’ve noticed the accent... Where are you from and what brought you to sunny South Africa?
I was born in Dundee, Scotland. In the early 80’s there was a bit of a depression in Scotland and people were losing their jobs. So my folks had to send me out here at the tender age of nine to work on the coal mines in Cape Town.
2. If you had to have a super power, what would it be and why?
Definitely the ability to teleport; I could surf (and do other stuff) anywhere I wanted and I wouldn’t need all the bureaucratic red tape like passports and visas, and I could forego the crazy plane ticket prices.
3. What’s your favourite thing about working at Sustainable.co.za?
So far my favourite thing has been working with the team at Sustainable.co.za and learning so much more about the sustainable industry. Okay, so that’s two things.
4. What attracted you to the green industry? Have you always been passionate about the environment?
I’ve always been involved in the idea of change in our society. I’ve spent years studying societal thinking and conditioning and the move to the sustainable industry was a natural step for me as it has the potential to be a powerful platform for change.
5. What effect do you think the green economy has on job creation in South Africa?
I think this industry could definitely create a lot of jobs, but as with every question like this, what kind of jobs are we talking about and how will those jobs ultimately uplift the people of South Africa? I mean, just having a job doesn’t necessarily create wealth, harmony and happiness. More than anything I think as the sustainable industry grows it will be a sign that we are growing as a conscious people. Sustainability isn’t just about the environment; it’s also about people.
6. We know that the office foosball is a very serious affair in the Sustainable.co.za office – do you have any tactics that you would like to share with us?
Foosball? Yeah, we used to play a lot on the Cape Town coal mines so I learned quite a few tactics. Granted some of my favourite techniques like the one involving the rock drill are kind of useless, but I still have a few cards up the old sleeve. I’d also like to say how chicken everyone’s been in challenging us here at Sustainable.co.za.
Who is the reigning champion?
7. What green product or gadget could you absolutely not live without?
Got to say my Powertraveller Explorer is very cool.
8. Do you have any hopes and dreams to share with us for the future?
Yeah definitely, I hope to see and be involved in a massive shift in awareness in the general public towards sustainability but also towards a greater sense of national community and a better understanding of what that actually means. There’s more to that, but I’m not going go down that rabbit hole right now, because I have work to do!
9. When you’re not working, what are you most likely to be doing?
Argh so many things… A few I’ve had to take a break from for a while. Researching, surfing, Kung Fu, a bit of gaming, reading, socialising, and studying consciousness…the list goes on…
10. Do you have a quick green tip for the readers at home?
Yeah sure, I think there are a lot of green tips but most of all I think people just have to get actively involved. The problem is that there needs to be more attention placed on growing a green infrastructure so that people can more easily apply the wealth of tips already out there.
Alan holds up his favourite quote by the late Madiba in celebration of Nelson Mandela Day.