Business Sustainability, Innovation and Efficiency
Jon Dee is an award-winning social entrepreneur, broadcaster and campaigner.
With 36 years experience, Jon is a high-profile expert in the field of business sustainability. In 2020, he was called “the leading Australian figure in sustainability and the environment” by Michael Liebreich, the founder of Bloomberg New Energy Finance.
As a broadcaster, Jon wrote, produced and presented 115 episodes of Smart Money – a live TV program on Sky News Business Channel where he showed companies how to be innovative, efficient, circular and sustainable.
Companies that Jon interviewed on his programme included Toyota, McDonald’s, KPMG, SABMiller, Coca-Cola, Westpac, PwC, LEGO, Qantas, BT, Tesla, Accenture, IKEA, M&S, News Corp, The Body Shop, Fujitsu, KFC, Mirvac, Marriott Hotels, Mars, Jaguar Land Rover, Sydney Opera House, Coles, Lion, Unilever and many others.
In total, Jon wrote and presented 700 different business sustainability news stories and interviews. It’s the only sustainable business series that’s ever aired on prime time TV. His business guidebooks ‘Sustainable Growth’, ‘EnergyCut’ and ‘EnergySmart’ have shifted over 140,000 copies. Thanks to Government funding, these books can be downloaded for free from EnergySmartSaver.com.au and JonDee.com/books.
Jon works with businesses to create real change
In Australia, Jon heads up the RE100 renewable energy initiative.
In his RE100 role, Jon has recruited Australian companies with a market cap of $650 billion.
Here in Australia, 112 major companies are members of RE100 – all of them are going 100% renewable with their electricity use.
As part of the RE100 push, Jon hosts the Energy Insights video series where he interviews international business leaders about their push to go 100% renewable. His first video in this series features Jon interviewing Apple global sustainability chief Lisa Jackson about Apple going 100% renewable. Click here to view this video.
Within Australia and overseas, Jon has given hundreds of keynote speeches. He also MC’s events and consults to companies on efficiency, sustainability and change management. Jon also runs the ‘Smarter Futures’ business sustainability channel on Twitter. Featuring business sustainability solutions, his tweets can be read at Twitter.com/Smarter_Futures.
Creating Social and Environmental Change
As a philanthropist, Jon was the main founder of the Planet Ark, DoSomething and Rock Aid Armenia charities.
Jon co-founded Planet Ark in 1991 and ran the organisation for its first 15 years. As Managing Director he initiated and oversaw the organisation’s highly successful initiatives and prime time TV advertising campaigns.
Jon has produced and directed over 300 environmentally focused TV adverts and videos featuring Tom Cruise, Kylie Minogue, Dustin Hoffman, Nicole Kidman, Kevin McCloud, Sir Richard Branson, Judy Davis, Pierce Brosnan, Jeff Goldblum and many others.
Jon and Olivia Newton-John founded Australia’s highly successful National Tree Day. Together they fronted the event for the community planting of its first 10 million trees.
In 2013, Jon and Olivia co-founded the international One Tree Per Child initiative. Jon is the Global Director of One Tree Per Child which has now planted trees in 10 countries.
Jon started National Recycling Week and National Op Shop Week. He also initiated the highly successful RecyclingNearYou.com.au, DoSomethingNearYou.com.au and FoodWise.com.au websites.
In 1989, Jon founded Rock Aid Armenia. Over a 30 year period, Jon ran this initiative to help people in the Armenian earthquake zone.
This involved Jon recruiting the support of people from bands such as Queen, Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, Deep Purple, Black Sabbath, Rush, Bon Jovi and many more.
Jon had a top 40 UK hit with his all-star Rock Aid Armenia version of Smoke on the Water. Jon’s Earthquake Album was the first UK charity album to go ‘gold’, selling 100,000 copies in just 10 days. Jon’s Smoke on the Water music video has now been viewed 18 million times and can be viewed here: JonDee.info/smokeonthewater
Together with Ara Tadevosyan, Jon initiated the building of a brand new music school in the earthquake zone. Opened in 2013, it now teaches 220 children a year.
Jon was a member of the environment committee for the Sydney 2000 bid which oversaw the development of the Environmental Guidelines for the 2000 Games.
In 1994 he also recruited Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman to front Sydney’s Green Games video. Jon’s video of Tom and Nicole got more international PR than any other part of the Sydney 2000 bid. That video can be viewed here: https://youtu.be/UYkv9sK1f20
Every time you switch on the light, wash your clothes, take a shower or go shopping, Jon has reduced the environmental impact of your life.
In 2005, Jon initiated the Ban The Bulb campaign that led to Australia phasing out incandescent globes. This move has saved Australians billions of dollars in energy bills.
In 2010-11 Jon initiated and ran the successful campaign to bring about a voluntary industry ban on phosphates in household laundry detergents. As a result, the 2 billion laundry washes carried out in Australia every year are now phosphate-free.
In 2014, Jon launched a campaign to phase out plastic microbeads in personal care products. He managed to get key companies to agree to phase out their use. Jon’s campaign led to the national phase out plan for plastic microbeads. As of July 2018, Australian personal care products no longer contain polluting plastic microbeads.
Jon also played a key role in the national campaign to ban plastic bags. In 2002, Jon launched the first national campaign to ban plastic bags. Jon and Ben Kearney then co-organised Australia’s first plastic bag ban in Coles Bay Tasmania. With Ian Kiernan, Jon also co-launched Australia’s first reusable Green Bags for Coles.
Jon then worked closely with the South Australian and Tasmanian governments in bringing about their plastic bag bans. In 2016, then Federal Environment Minister Greg Hunt publicly acknowledged Jon’s key role in the phaseout of plastic checkout bags.
In 2010, Jon was made Australian of the Year (NSW) for his sustainability work. In 2009, the President of Armenia awarded Jon The Order Of Honor for his work in the earthquake zone. The medal is Armenia’s highest honour for people not born in Armenia.
The feedback from delegates has been extremely positive with many saying that they identified with your simple but refreshing approach to sustainability in that it is good business sense about about doing more with less. The delegates were also very excited to receive a copy of your book, Sustainable Growth.
-Association of Building Sustainability Assessors
Jon was exceptional - incredibly well prepared, right on target with the topic, with an interesting presentation that held the audience's attention. Jon engaged the audience both during and after the event, making a real effort to discuss issues with the audience over lunch. Jon was also most accommodating regarding media after the event. He was a pleasure to have and an asset to the event.
-Central West Catchment Management Authority
Thank you very much for taking the time to speak at Frocomm's 2010 Public Relations & Corporate Communications Conference in Sydney in August. The feedback about your speaking slot has been fantastic, with delegates voting you the joint number one best speaker along with author/speaker Gerry McCusker from PR Disasters. Your confidence on stage and your willingness to share insights into exciting case studies really appealed to the delegates. Comments from delegates like "great", "very impressive" and "inspiring" clearly show knowledge of your subject, that you are a professional public speaker, and that you truly engage with the delegates, especially in the Q&A sessions. Delegates also commented on your excellent use of visual aids such as video and photos. I would be delighted to recommend you to any conference organiser seeking a professional, confident and polished speaker.
Jon continues to meet our expectations with regard to the content and messages he delivers in talks conducted on our behalf. He is also extremely amenable with regard to pre-event media and media interviews on the day. Jon is an asset to our current program - I could not recommend him more highly to anyone wishing to engage a relevant, informed, approachable and engaging speaker.
-West Catchment Management Authority
Some delegate feedback has been - 'Great presentation. Enjoyed the think globally, act locally content;' 'It inspired me to change and act as a leader as I am in charge of the culture within the workplace and office;' 'Great to see such comprehensive change in society is achievable;' 'He was amazing and inspirational. I always see/read about these amazing people and it seems unreachable. Jon speaking about walking the talk, and having conviction in your actions made his amazing life and global changes very real.'
The presentation you provided was not only inspirational with a wealth of practical resources it was also exceptionally well presented. It is a rare occurrence for me to be so moved to take the stage and make such an impromptu congratulatory address. Your presentation however had that effect on me … The industry holds a great number of people who provide loving care and support to older Australians. Your presentation will help many of them as they work alongside LASA in the promotion of age services to help older Australians to live well.