Green Building's Resident Troublemaker
Jason McLennan is often regarded as one of the most influential people in the sustainable building movement.
In addition to winning the prestigious Buckminster Fuller Challenge, he developed the Living Building Challenge, which is the new pinnacle for sustainable building and design - setting the bar far higher than LEED Platinum certification (for more details about the rigorous requirements of the Living Building Challenge, see our interview with Amanda Sturgeon in Issue 2). Leonardo DiCaprio has handpicked McLennan to design his new restorative eco-resort on a private island off of Belize, which, upon completion, will provide a new model for what is possible in the sustainable design world. McLennan currently serves as the CEO of the International Living Future Institute, an NGO that provides green building solutions and education to raise the bar for true sustainability in the built environment. We spoke to McLennan on Bainbridge Island, Washington, about the genesis of the Living Building Challenge, what it takes to shift the paradigm of an industry, and creating handprints rather than footprints.