By THÉRÈSE MARGOLIS
It started off back in 2009 as a simple effort by a group of ecology-conscious business leaders in Texas who decided to join forces to stop the Texas Utility (TXU) energy company in the Dallas suburb of Irving from acquiring 11 permits to open coal-based production plants.
Led by Dallas retail mogul Trammell S. Crow, the group tenaciously took on TXU and refused to give in until the Texas energy giant finally backed down and settled for just three coal plants instead of the original 11.
In the end, the battle in defense of clean energy was not that brutal since, in the interim, TXU changed hands and the new owners had a much more Earth-friendly business worldview than their predecessors and did not put up much of a fight.
But for the tiny band of quixotic businessmen who had decided to confront the mighty TXU windmill, this was an epiphanic moment: They suddenly realized that, together, they could make a difference and help defend the environment.
And thus was born EarthX, a loosely structured green energy trade show, recycling forum, eco-minded entertainment platform and love-Mother-Nature festival with a single unifying goal: to make the world a cleaner, more sustainable place one tree, one film or one exhibition at a time.
Today, EarthX, with nearly 40,000 global members, is the largest eco-expo in the world, and offers a hodgepodge of conferences, concerts, film fests and virtual TV channels to help get out the message of environmental awareness and spur grassroots efforts to safe the planet.
Although it is still based out of Dallas, EarthX has in the last decade expanded its reach and bully pulpit to more than 170 countries around the world.
And while the global covid-19 pandemic certainly put a damper on some of the in-person activities of EarthX’s annual Earth Day celebration, in 2020 and 2021, its business-savvy members found creative new outlets for evangelizing their message through online platforms and alternative forums.
Last week, an eight-member team of environmental leaders, led by Crow himself, came to Mexico to recruit new business members to their save-the-world crusade.
In many ways, the EarthX delegation was simply here to test the waters and to put out feelers to see how the two countries’ private sectors could work together toward a common objective.
But through a series of impromptu events and gatherings with Mexican officials and businessmen alike, the EarthX team managed to spark enough interest to ensure that next year, when the annual EarthX expo returns to full in-person status, there will be a Mexico pavilion once again at the Dallas event.
Crow, who took time out of his hectic schedule to meet with Pulse News Mexico on Friday, May 28, noted that there has always been a close synergy between U.S. and Mexican eco-industrialists, and within the context of the newly minted United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) there is an urgent need to work together to make sure that business and sustainability are developed hand-in-hand throughout the region.
The groundwork for that bilateral cooperation already exists, Crow pointed out.
In 2018, Mexican environmental activist Juan Carlos Izquierdo and several other major Mexican business leaders hosted the first EarthX event at the Casa del Lago in Chapultepec.
The following year, the first Mexican pavilion was erected at the annual Dallas expo.
Crow said that he was convinced that Mexican entrepreneurs shared the same concerns as their U.S. counterparts that “doing well must also mean doing good.”
And while there may be geographic, cultural and political barriers that separate the two countries, he said, the universal awareness that there is no Plan B and no Planet B when it comes to responsible stewardship of the environment transcends all borders.
After all, Crow said, who wouldn’t want to make this a better world for themselves and for their descendants?