Green.org sat down with Sean Davis, the Regional Director for the Americas for Enterprise Ireland, to learn about how he is developing international business for Ireland around the world. Enterprise Ireland is the government organization responsible for the development and growth of Irish enterprises in world markets. They work in partnership with Irish enterprises to help them start, grow, innovate and win export sales in global markets. In this way, they support sustainable economic growth, regional development and secure employment.
Sean, thank you for being here. Tell us a little bit about you and your background:
I am the Regional Director for the Americas for Enterprise Ireland, I took up this role after spending 5 years as the Regional Manager for MENA based in Dubai. We have 8 offices across the Americas, 5 in the US, 2 in Canada and 1 in Brazil covering LATAM.
What is a fun fact about you?
I came to the US in 1996 and prior to joining EI in 2006 I founded 2 NYC based businesses. Running my own business gave me a front line understanding of some of the challenges faced by start ups and SME’s
Why do you think climate change and sustainability is such an important topic today?
There are a number of reasons: 1) The most important one is that we only have this planet and given where the science and increasingly the evidence is pointing we have a global responsibility to address climate change and the economic and social impact; 2) Economic growth an future jobs: Areas such as renewable energy, improved energy storage technology, water and waste water management technology, enhanced technology around food production (increased sustainability), energy efficient buildings (Residential and Commercial). All of these have the potential to drive innovation, innovation that can lead to better paying jobs in the medium term; 3) Globally there is best in class innovation that we can all learn and benefit from, for example, in the Netherlands Dutch farmers use half a gallon of water to grow a pound of tomatoes, the global average is 28 gallons, in the United Arab Emirates they are developing cloud seeding technology to enhance rain fall (average rain fall in the UAE is approx 3 inches per annum.
What do you envision your industry looking like 10 years from now?
Enterprise Ireland works with our broad Irish industrial base. Our current strategy, Leading in a Changing World has a specific KPI to reduce emissions across our indigenous industrial sectors by 29-41% by 2030. This will be driven by significant investment in technology and education. As a country Ireland exports 90% of the food and beverages we manufacture, hence innovation in production and manufacturing in this sector will be a key focus area for Enterprise Ireland and the wider eco system
What can the average person do to make a difference?
We are all consumers, hence if we all contribute in any way we can to reducing energy consumption, to considering purchase options from sustainable sources or even just lending our voice in support of the challenges of climate change, it all helps. This is a global issue and one where together we can achieve more.