November 19, 2012

The Driver's Seat Twitter Campaign: Tina

In The Driver’s Seat of the Westport Twitter account for the next two weeks is Tina H., who is based at Westport’s head office in Vancouver, Canada.

Tina works as the director of Westport’s Internal Audit function; she and her team are responsible for helping Westport develop and implement best practices throughout the organization and foster awareness of risk and internal controls. Tina enjoys the “small, big-company” atmosphere at Westport, where the growth over the last few years has been phenomenal, and Tina is seizing the opportunity to take her experience in mature global organizations and apply it to Westport as the company grows further.

Tina’s role occasionally takes her away from head office in Vancouver to visit Westport’s operations around the globe, and she has plans to visit all locations over the next 12 months. No stranger to travel, Vancouver-native Tina left a decade ago to pursue experience in London and New York. She returned to Vancouver last summer with her family to enjoy a slower paced lifestyle.

When not at Westport managing her growing and energetic team of Internal Auditors, Tina is in the new home she is enjoying since her move back to Vancouver. She says, “We are relishing the fact that we do not have to take a plane to visit half of our family (the other half is in England). We are simply enjoying the peaceful back garden with our daughter!”

Tina kick-starts the morning with coffee, but then adrenaline and the fast pace of Westport’s activities carries her through the day. Tina’s favourite food is sushi, which she says is very expensive in New York and London so the plentiful selection of affordable, high quality fish in Vancouver is a treat.

Tina claims a nice dinner date-night out with her husband would be her indulgence – a rare occurrence for them, each with a demanding career and a little one in the family.

As mentioned, Westporters are taking turns in The Driver's Seat of our Twitter account (@WestportDotCom). To date we've heard from Nick SCarolineJohn L & John HAstridLanceMonica FFabioNicoleRonghuanMaureenManojMats and Tomas, and MelissaBrad and Jonathan.

November 8, 2012

Congratulations to Fred Zweep for his NGV Global 2012 Champion Award!

NGV Global 2012 is happening  in Mexico City from November 7-10, 2012 and to launch the event, organizers recognized five outstanding individuals from around the world for their contribution to the natural gas vehicle (NGV) industry.

Fred Zweep of Vedder Transport Ltd  is an extraordinary ambassador and Westport Innovations is proud to congratulate him as a 2012 NGV Global Champion. Fred is an astute and well-spoken business man with a relentless commitment to his community, clients, partners and employees. His work and business ethics are second-to-none and his continuous support to the NGV industry is admirable.

Fred Zweep receiving the award for NGV Global Champion from NGV Global Chairman Gabriele Gozzi.
Fred’s dedication to both operational and environmental excellence, combined with his passion and integrity, has led the company to adopt a multitude of innovative solutions. In December 2010, Vedder Transport was the first operation of its kind in Westport Canada to announce its purchase of 50 Peterbilt liquified natural gas (LNG) trucks powered by Westport HD systems. Fred’s constant commitment to achieving excellence and safety has also positively influenced the perception of LNG trucks.

Furthermore, his innovative leadership has become known around the globe, and Fred regularly welcomes industry stakeholders, government officials and commercial fleets to his facilities in British Columbia to showcase his successful adoption of LNG trucks. These visits and meetings are arguably the most effective activity to demonstrate the tangible benefits of NGVs and convince additional fleets of the advantages of adopting LNG trucks, consequently encouraging the use of NGVs in other jurisdictions.

This 2012 NGV Champion award recognizes Fred’s exceptional contribution and valuable support to the NGV industry at home and abroad.

November 5, 2012

The Driver's Seat Twitter Campaign: Jonathan

In The Driver’s Seat of the Westport Twitter account for the next two weeks is Jonathan M., who is based at Westport head office in Vancouver, Canada.

Jonathan is not new to social media. He uses Twitter for personal news as well as for research at work. As a research assistant on the Sustainable Energy Futures team, he spends a great deal of time researching and compiling data on everything related to natural gas for transportation including policy and macro energy trends.

He says he enjoys working on sustainability issues in a real-world and practical way, and being part of something “effecting change today and tomorrow.”

In his free time, Jonathan would rather be in an ocean canoe somewhere on the BC coast. He goes canoe-camping or bicycle camping as often as he can. In town or out, Jonathan may be found writing. Perhaps surprisingly, he often develops ideas while riding the bus!

He indulges in serial television dramas. He attends local live music events, especially electronic or experimental music. On the restaurant scene, he’s all over the recent Neapolitan pizza craze across Vancouver. He likes anything spicy, French food, and cooking at home is enjoyable as well as eating out.

If he could have dinner with anyone, alive or dead, real or fictional, he says without a doubt it would be one of his “favourite dead authors” to whom he could pose many questions. The list includes David Foster Wallace (Infinite Jest) and one-time North Vancouver resident Malcolm Lowry (Under the Volcano).

As mentioned, Westporters are taking turns in The Driver's Seat of our Twitter account (@WestportDotCom). To date we've heard from Nick SCarolineJohn L & John HAstridLanceMonica FFabioNicoleRonghuanMaureenManojMats and Tomas, and Melissa and Brad.

November 2, 2012

BSR 2012 Conference – Fast Forward

By Teresa Ko, Westport Sustainability Performance Analyst

Twenty years ago, Business Social Responsibility (BSR) was founded, and in October they celebrated the anniversary with the BSR 2012 Conference in New York City.  The conference covered sustainability in a dynamic way across various sectors.  Lively discussion topics ranged from social media’s impact on sustainability to the changing energy landscape.  It was a truly collaborative experience between the public and private sectors along with governmental agencies and non- governmental organizations. 
Some of the highlights included:
·         A speech by and discussion with Anne-Marie Slaughter, Bert G. Kerstetter  ’66 University Professor of Politics and International Affairs at Princeton University.  She’s also the author of a very popular feature published in The Atlantic, “Why Women Still Can’t Have It All,” ( which addresses the importance of gender equality in the workplace.  Slaughter gave solid examples of tri-sector partnerships (public /private/ civic partnership) and how they can solve global problems.  She also raised the difference between making a living and having a life.
·         The panel discussion on The Changing Energy Landscape between Fred Krupp, President, Environmental Defense Fund and Mindy Lubber, President, Ceres, Director, Investor Network on Climate Risk.  The topic is so important and complex; it’s not surprising that it exceeded its scheduled timeframe.  Both Krupp and Lubber agreed that we need to make smart and thoughtful decisions in terms of energy.  
·         The collaborative spirit carried through during the discussion with Neil Golightly, VP Shell North America, when he addressed how the connectedness of resources such as water and food need to be taken into consideration when looking at the energy equation.
As an emerging sustainability professional, I really appreciated the enthusiasm the attendees and speakers brought to the conference.  I met a lot of smart individuals who were full of ideas and I was able to share best practices and insights with some. 
As Aron Cramer, President and CEO, BSR said, “…we don’t need more road maps, we know where we have to go, we need to get there quickly.”  I agree and further to that thought, I think that we need to prepare ourselves for times when we have to re-visit the road map.  We need to be resilient to be able to adapt to our ever- changing environment.