Vancouver’s longest-serving mayor has popped back up after more than a year out of the spotlight.
Today (January 21), Gregor Robertson announced his next move. The former Happy Planet entrepreneur is returning to the private sector, joining a Vancouver company called Nexii.
“Life update,” Robertson wrote on social media this morning. “Took some time off last year to think about what I wanted to do with my time and energy after 10 years as Mayor of Vancouver. My passion and mission has always been about creating a happy and healthy planet where everyone has a home and opportunities to thrive.
“That’s why I’m thrilled to share that I’m working with Nexii, a Vancouver startup, to advance green building technology around the world,” he continued.
The company’s full name is Nexii Building Solutions Inc.
Robertson, who served as Vancouver mayor from 2008 to 2018, will hold the title of executive vice president of strategy and partnerships, according to a media release. Nexii is described there as a “green building and technology company”.
The release states that Nexii “develops sustainable, durable, cost-efficient and disaster-resilient buildings”. It uses a proprietary material called “Nexitte” in place of concrete and that allows for construction projects with a smaller carbon footprint, the release claims.
“Nexii has developed innovative building solutions with the potential to both significantly reduce the construction sector’s impact on the environment and help tackle the global housing shortage,” it reads.
“Buildings and construction together are the largest contributor to CO2 emissions at 39 percent,” the release adds.
Robertson is quoted there emphasizing that the onset of climate change means there is a need for environmentally-focused companies.
“We are at a critical time for restoring our environment,” he said. “Buildings are the largest source of climate pollution. That’s why when Nexii - the creators of new breakthrough green building technologies - asked me to join their team, I didn’t hesitate.”
Environmental policies and opposition to carbon-intensive projects were hallmarks of the administration that Robertson led as mayor of Vancouver.
Robertson and his Vision Vancouver party were early advocates for public transportation and the installation of bicycle lanes around the city, for example. In addition, his administration’s Greenest City Action Plan serves as a guiding set of policies and programs designed to reduce Vancouver’s collective greenhouse-gas emissions and promote a sustainable future.
On social media today, Robertson described the company as one with the potential to make a positive impact on the environment.
“Nexii will not only help to reduce the impact of buildings on our climate, but can also help address the housing crunch in growing cities,” he wrote. “Much more to share in the weeks and months to come.”