Hill is the founder of TreeHugger, an online hub for news and information related to environmental sustainability.Hailed as a "green CNN," TreeHugger hosts a constantly updated blog, newsletters, video and radio segments and a user-generated Graham site, Hugg. In the three years since its inception, TreeHugger has become one of the most high-profile and highly-trafficked sites on the internet.
Recently, Hill his been hard at work developing Planet Green with Discovery Communications. Hill has also worked in a variety of industries prior to starting TreeHugger, including fashion, web-development, and plant-based air filters. He is also a designer, and his New York souvenir coffee mug is sold in over 150 stores. Hill was educated at Carleton University in Ottawa and Emily Carr Institute of ArtDesign in Vancouver.
Question: Whose responsibility is the environment?
Graham Hill: I think all three of those legs of the stool, business, consumer and government; are lagging. There’s no question. This is the issue of our times.
Thousands of scientists are saying we have ten years to make major advances in this. And so all of those three groups need to push really hard forward, and I think the government’s one. Consumers and businesses probably move quicker than government in general.
It’s a long process, and part of that’s a good thing because there is a process and we try to get to a right solution. All of us need to do more, and the government can absolutely do more. They can absolutely have a big impact. On a simple level, I don’t spend a lot of time focusing on policy, but basically; the good and the bad. It’s that simple.
I believe in market economics, but I don’t believe that the market just figures it out all by itself. I think that you need to set some base rules. And I think that’s the government’s job. And so hopefully they can move quicker and quicker; the good and the bad. And that should help, and business can just follow along. And they’ll work within the rules, and consumers will do their part.
Question: Can environmentalism be more integrated into our system?
Graham Hill: Absolutely. Yeah, I think it’s not recognized. We haven’t valued it monetarily or otherwise, frankly. So I think it absolutely can be better integrated.
We just didn’t know that it mattered. Like that’s the thing. We just didn’t know that it mattered. For the last 30 or 40 years, we figured out that it does matter. And so now we’re readjusting, and we just need to push hard to adjust quickly.
Recorded on: Oct 16, 2007