Business Columns & Blogs

CEOs are planning for climate change and sea level rise

A cyclist and vehicles negotiate heavily flooded streets as rain falls on Sept. 23, 2014, in Miami Beach, Fla. Certain neighborhoods regularly experience flooding during heavy rains and extreme high tides. South Florida CEOs were asked: In what ways has your business or organization begun taking climate change and sea level rise into account for future planning, programming, and budgeting purposes?
A cyclist and vehicles negotiate heavily flooded streets as rain falls on Sept. 23, 2014, in Miami Beach, Fla. Certain neighborhoods regularly experience flooding during heavy rains and extreme high tides. South Florida CEOs were asked: In what ways has your business or organization begun taking climate change and sea level rise into account for future planning, programming, and budgeting purposes? AP File

CEOs were asked: In what ways has your business or organization begun taking climate change and sea level rise into account for future planning, programming, and budgeting purposes?


We recycle as much as we can — from cardboard to pallets, as well as energy efficiency sensors throughout our warehouse. We have also started distributing Rhino Paper Straws for retail. These are not future planning steps but rather what we can do now to help alleviate the issue.

Jennifer Cramer, CEO, co-founder, The Spice Lab


In 2013, Stantec set a goal of reducing per-employee emissions by 5 percent over five years. Thanks to a determined effort across the company, we exceeded our goal, reducing our total emissions per employee by 11 percent and our office-based emissions per employee by almost 26 percent. This year, we set a new goal to reduce our per employee office-based emissions by 40 percent by 2028. Beyond following best practices around energy conservation, there are four primary ways we will bring down our company’s emissions: Consolidating offices into energy-efficient spaces, reducing our travel, updating our vehicle fleet, and enhancing our print management. We are already seeing the results of these strategies in the form of significant emissions reductions and cost savings. Accelerating our efforts will bring us even closer to our goals. We are also investigating innovations and ideas that can help us achieve even more. We are already responding to the impacts of climate change seen in the multiple climates and cultures where we work. Our specialists help communities plan for and recover from wildfires, hurricanes, and flooding. We create resiliency solutions that mitigate the impacts of an increasingly warmer world. Our work in energy conservation and renewable energy generation is also industry-leading and we deliver consulting and design services that support a low-carbon future.

Adriana Jaegerman, senior principal, managing leader, Stantec


As a boutique immigration law practice, we have not yet had to address these issues, notwithstanding their tremendous relevance to our community.

José E. Latour, founding partner, LatourLaw


As a nonprofit organization that works with businesses, we share information with our corporate members and minority businesses about climate change and the impact of sea level rise. We have a major focus on disaster preparedness and recovery as a result of the recent storms. Most companies do not have disaster plans and many that are impacted by a disaster never recover. Having a plan is key to the long term sustainability of a company. As a result, we share a disaster recovery plan and tool kit with our constituents. Unfortunately, only 26 percent of small and medium size businesses have a disaster preparedness plan in place. As climate change affects our weather, everyone needs to be prepared.

Beatrice Louissaint, president, CEO, Florida State Minority Supplier Development Council


Miami Business School is proudly launching this August the first STEM-certified MS in Sustainable Business at any university. Thanks to collaboration with our sister schools of Engineering and Marine Science, we have crafted a unique curriculum that combines science with business. We are targeting young professionals who aspire to be the chief sustainability officers of Fortune 500 companies. We’ll launch with a stellar first class of 25 students. See for more information.

John Quelch, vice provost, University of Miami Dean, Miami Business School and Leonard M. Miller University Professor


These are two of the most compelling changes affecting our planet in the decades to come, and we’re already seeing evidence of both. Our warmer winters and hotter summers require more air conditioning, which will drive up electric bills, which businesses will pass on to consumers. The tricky aspect of sea-level rise is that, even if we’re able to take steps individually (such as living in a high-rise or upgrading our property), it’s meaningless if the area infrastructure doesn’t also upgrade. If roads and stores aren’t built on higher ground, for example, we won’t have access to the life-sustaining services we count on today. One way or another, our desire to dwell along South Florida’s coastline will come at an enormous price.

Kelly Ramsden, managing partner, Office Edge and Legal Edge


As an institution, when we consider the future safety and upkeep of our facilities and collection, climate change is at top of mind. We have to proactively plan for climate uncertainty, and the unexpected impacts that it can have on the institution’s infrastructure. Not only is resiliency at the top of our mind as an institution, but climate change is also an issue that artists in Miami and around the world are thinking about when they are making their work. For example, MOCA North Miami recently presented “Tracing the Red Thread” by Miami-based artist Mira Lehr. The exhibition was focused on climate change and environmental issues as a major factor facing mankind today.

Chana Sheldon, executive director, MOCA





▪ Efforts to boost low wages may ease affordability crisis

▪ Local and state governments must do more to address affordable housing

▪ Find your passion and own your career path, CEOS tell job seekers

▪  Here’s how CEOs would advise a high school senior class on its last day

▪ South Florida CEOs offer suggestion to address America’s student loan debt

▪ Supervisors often were the greatest influence on CEOs’ careers

▪ CEOs address Miami’s racial wealth gap

▪ CEOs discuss transforming healthcare in America

▪ Is the job market as good as it gets?

▪ CEOs split on encouraging marijuana sales in Florida

▪ Unlocking state funds for affordable housing is the right move, CEOS said

▪ CEOs try to lasso healthcare costs, but more needs to be done

▪ CEOs agree that tax breaks are needed to lure businesses to Florida

▪ Technology led to significant changes in 2018 for most CEOs

▪ What are CEOs doing to attract and retain workers?

▪ Most CEOs say salaries will increase in 2019

▪ Most CEOs are in ‘growth mode’ with plans to hire more

▪ CEOs’ 2019 economic forecast offers differing views

▪ How CEOs are trying to attract ‘Generation Z’

▪ Most CEOs say PortMiami should expand more, without hurting the fragile eco-system

▪ Should financial institutions reach more ‘unbanked’ people?

▪ Tech scene throughout South Florida is building momentum

▪ CEOs discuss their top workforce challenges for 2019

▪ The best gift? Even for the most successful people, life is about more than business

▪ Recession ahead? CEOs divided on whether they see signs of one

▪ CEOs: Amazon’s strong look at Miami for HQ2 made the region look hard at itself

Biggest influence on CEOs’ careers? Most say it was a parent

▪ Jobs available? CEOs look at their companies

▪ CEOs keep an eye on Miami’s cost of living

The key to retaining employees? Start with good pay and benefits

▪ Live-work-play? More employees opt to live closer to workplaces

Some CEOs say they’ve raised wages this year

▪ Here are some issues CEOs hope lawmakers keep top-of-mind this election year

CEOs offer varying opinions on higher education

▪ Local firms are doing their part to be more eco-friendly

▪ CEOs are all smiles thanks to local economic boom

Is work-life balance a myth? CEOs share their thoughts

▪ CEOs help employees stsruggling with long commutes

▪ Despite airline woes, CEOs are not changing traveling habits

▪ CEOs have diverse opinions on Trump’s tariffs and other actions

▪ CEOs feel pressure to keep wages competitive

▪ South Florida CEOs say that Miami can sustain David Beckham’s soccer team

▪ CEOs hope common-sense control on assault rifles happens soon

▪ Will Amazon open HQ2 in Miami? Maybe, maybe not, but city’s profile rises, CEOs say

▪ We have much to learn about public transit from other cities, CEOs say

CEOs: Cuban coffee, flexibility and beach picnics help employees balance job demands

CEOs discuss how to deal with extreme views in the workplace

▪ Extra guards, added security measures protect staff and clients

▪ As automation advances, CEOs say humans are still needed

▪ Holiday parties celebrate employees and the year’s successes

These CEOs have zero tolerance for sexual harassment

Will automation change your job? Yes — and no, CEOs say

▪ How CEOs address hostility in the workplace

▪ Good storm planning can stave off disruptions, CEOs find

Storms highlighted serious local issues, CEOs say

▪ Planning, preparation are keys to disaster recovery, CEOs say

▪ CEOs say students who improve certain skills are better prepared for future jobs

▪ Uncertainty about the Affordable Care Act on the minds of CEOs

▪ In a year of challenges, CEOs took risks, learned and grew

▪ CEOs believe community should be involved in making public schools better

▪ Best bosses we ever had inspired, challenged and cared, say South Florida CEOs

▪ South Florida CEOs try to evaluate the nation’s top CEO: President Trump

▪ CEOs’ advice to college students: Network! Internships! Research!

▪ Affordable housing a cause of concern for CEOs

▪ Communication, cool heads key to avoiding public relations nightmares

▪ Meet the new Miami Herald CEO Roundtable

▪ Ahh, the first job. CEOs learned valuable lessons on the bottom rung

▪ It’s getting harder for employees and CEOs to disconnect while on vacation

▪ Florida’s legislators must act on economy and education, CEOs say

Most CEOs provide paid internships, and everyone benefits

Local firms rich in generational immigrants, CEO say, but deportation efforts worry some

Long hours at the office? CEOs say how they avoid burnout

CEOs prefer balance when dealing with a defiant employee

The most important issue facing South Florida this year? CEOs say it’s traffic

Have you been to Cuba? CEOs discuss business and travel opportunities on the island

CEOs discuss their resolutions for the New Year

CEOs: Trump, ugly politics among the biggest surprises of 2016

CEOs’ top request for Trump’s first 100 days: ‘Unity’

CEOs won’t tolerate ugly comments in the workplace

CEOs assess South Florida’s economy for 2017

Did Obamacare hurt your business? South Florida CEOs respond