The 4th of July is as appropriate a time as any to reflect back on what makes America such a great nation of innovation. In many ways, it is the men and women who have a vision for What Comes Next, and who are part of a vibrant melting pot culture that encourages them to achieve their goals. Recently, Bloomberg BusinessWeek profiled America's Most Promising Social Entrepreneurs. Not surprisingly, many of these entrepreneurs are working on projects related to green and sustainable lifestyles. One of my favorite companies in the list is Mobis Transportation Alternatives (pictured above), which is working to make bicycling and public transit easier alternatives to driving: "The company designs, builds, and manages bike transit centers. The stations, located near public transit hubs, offer secure parking for bicycles, as well as such other services as repairs, changing rooms, and storage lockers."
Judging from Bloomberg BusinessWeek's list, there are a lot of companies doing great work in the area of green and sustainable lifestyles - from BlackGold Biofuels (which converts sewer grease into biofuels) to Green Depot (the nation's largest green building supplier) to Sustainable Harvest (sustainable supply chains for coffee beans). The future of America is in supporting exactly these types of businesses and re-imagining a future that includes renewable energy sources, sustainable lifestyles and new types of mixed-use urban development zones.