The World Bamboo Exchange: a bamboo bridge
It was 30 years ago I first crossed the Atlantic to take part in the European Bamboo Society meeting held in the UK at Kew. This came as a result of being in Japan a few months before, where a group of us informally organized ourselves as the International Bamboo Association. That event changed my life forever. The theme of the 3rd International Bamboo Congress in Kumamoto, Japan was “Putting a Bamboo Bridge Across the World” and many of us have worked very hard these past 30 years to build bridges and cross them, all in the name of bamboo. The World Bamboo Organization evolved from those early days, incorporating in 2005 as a United States non-government trade association. Join me in hearing about what we’ve been doing all these years.
Susanne Lucas is a founder and the Executive Director of the World Bamboo Organization. Her professional background is in horticulture, as she works in the field of landscape design and garden development. Through seeing bamboo as a beautiful plant, her knowledge expanded to appreciating the myriad of global applications of bamboo as a vital natural resource, providing solutions as an environmental remedy for degraded land, an economic opportunity for communities in need, a sustainable building material, a biofuel, a fiber, climate change mitigator and so much more. She holds a BS in Horticulture from Colorado State University, served as a director for the American Bamboo Society for many years, is past president of the American Bamboo Society, and served on the board of the International Plant Propagators Society Eastern Region. She has published many articles about ornamental bamboo, and in 2013, Reaktion Press UK published her book, Bamboos. She lives in southeastern Massachusetts, USA.