Luis Lopezllera Mendes Presente!

photo of Luis Lopezllera Mendes

My dear friend and mentor Luis Lopezllera passed from this life the end of  October. Luis was the kindest, gentlest, most positive person I believe I have ever met. We met in Mexico City in 1986 in the aftermath of the Mexico City earthquake through the Partners of the Americas when San Francisco was ‘partnered’ with Mexico City. On that first trip to Mexico, Luis introduced me to the urban slums where masses of poor people were living in makeshift housing on dirt floors. We then worked together on and off over the next few years focusing on my bringing microcomputers and internet access to the NGO community in Mexico and throughout the region.

Luis was a great man, a true realist, a stellar human being. There are very few people you meet in life who are truly humble, largely behind the scenes, doing transformative work. Luis was one of them.  Luis had a vision of a better world and he worked tirelessly to achieve it. Through his organization, Promocion del Desarrollo Popular, he had great effect upon many people and movements.  If you search on his name, you will get an idea of the scope and reach of his life and work. Example.

Luis you are already now and for a long time to come will be sorely missed. You are present in our hearts and minds.

Building Energy Performance Simulation Modeling Training

I helped train 10 professional architects here in Pretoria in building energy performance simulation modeling using DesignBuilder software. Thank yous to the University of Pretoria Department of Architecture for use of their classroom facilities, to the Pretoria Institute for Architecture for arranging attendees, and to the Fulbright Specialist Program for bringing me to South Africa to share my knowledge and experience.

Localization for Climate Chaos Adaptation in Bolivia

I just completed a series of four investigative reports for the UNDP Bolivia where I explored how Buen Vivir can be manifested in the face of accelerating climate chaos impacts. The investigation included reviews of official government planning documents and the work of the UNDP itself. The focus was on building disaster readiness by making communities self-reliant and self-sufficient in essentials like food, water, energy, etc. so that when supply chains fail, they'll be prepared. The series wrapped up with a list of suggested pilot projects for the UNDP. I'm certainly looking forward to see which project(s) the UNDP chooses!UNDP logo

Energy Conservation versus Energy Production

Energy conservation (benign) could offset production (destructive). But no. Capitalism demands production, extractivism. Nature then pays the price. What we do to nature, we do to ourselves, as we are nature. The latest report of the IPCC Working Group II (Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability), points to the importance of integrating ‘indigenous and local knowledge’ in research and adaptation. Now even scientists understand that our dominant epistemology is a failure. The sooner we listen to this truth telling, the better. We can then change our behavior, rearrange our priorities, and begin to mitigate the worst effects of climate chaos.