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Wednesday, December 19, 2012

NYC Ei Partner Tours

Interactive Tour Hosts
Bob Zetty & Amy Moreland
In July, Elemental Impact Partner Heritage Interactive Services hosted the first Ei Partner Tours in their hometown Indianapolis, IN. The tours are designed for Ei Partners to tour and experience their fellow partner business operations and activities.  The IMPACT Blog post, Ei Partner Tours Launch in Indy, documents the amazing two days filled with tours, education, camaraderie and fun.

A second tour scheduled in NYC for early November to tag-team with Global Green's CoRR Food Waste Conference on November 7.  With Hurricane Sandy ravaging the Eastern Seaboard days prior to the tours, the group reduced to those residing in the NYC area or participating at the CoRR conference.  

The Global Enviro on-site food waste digester installation at The Shops at Riverside, a Simon mall, was the anchor tour.  Yet the mall remained without power and closed. Remaining flexible, the Ei Partners gathered on the first morning at Global Enviro's office for introductions and business overviews.  

For lunch the group dined at Les Halles followed by a tour of the Global Enviro system tour at the single-standing restaurant.  The ZWA Blog post, Food Waste: Too Valuable for Landfill, gives an overview of the tour and the Ei FB album, 11-05-12 Global Enviro System Tour, is the pictorial recap.

ELS office entrance
On the second day the partners traveled to Brooklyn for a tour of EcoLogic Solutions offices and warehouse located in the Brooklyn Navy Yard.  Mere days earlier the parking lot was under four to six feet of water yet no visible flooding evidence remained. ELS founder & CEO Anselm Doering impressed his guests with the integrity that infiltrates his company from the product to services to behind-the-scenes ethics.

A vast majority of the loft space is built out with reclaimed materials to create an eclectic, effective working environment.  The conference room, affectionately called the "living room," houses one of two "living walls" in the office. In the warehouse vegetable oil and restaurant spent grease is converted into biodiesel used for the ELS delivery vehicle.

SANeWater containders
ready for clean-up donation
Immediately upon gaining access to their space after Sandy hit, Anselm and his staff began filling one and five-gallon containers with SANeWater sanitizer made from the ELS cleaning solution system.  The santizer was donated to those cleaning the storm aftermath. In theory, each gallon of donated sanitzer prevented a gallon of toxic bleach from use in the clean-up.

At the center of the ELS’s sustainable products is their ECA (Electro-Chemical Activation) technology, which takes tap water, adds salt, and then passes the brine solution through low-dose electrolyzing chambers that split the liquid into a sodium hydroxide formula (eWater) for all-purpose cleaning and a hypochlorous acid mixture (SANeWater) for sanitizing and disinfecting.

A certified B-Corporation, ELS's customer base reflects the integrity of their products and includes Whole Foods MarketChipotleconEdisonNBCUniversalMandarin Oriental Hotel Group, and the Statue of Liberty.

ELS receives many industry accolades for their pioneering efforts in overhauling cleaning standards to effective products that harmonize with the environment. In April, the U.S. EPA honored ELS with a prestigious award. The IMPACT Blog post, ELS Receives EPA Award, gives the details of the recognition. 

The next Ei Partner Tours are scheduled for early March in Charlotte where HMSHost who will anchor the tours with their Concord Mills food court operations and Charlotte Airport concessions.  In addition to Ei Partners, several Ei Advisory Council and Strategic Allies plan to attend.

With each tour Ei Partner relationships grow stronger, powerful synergies emerge and important action ensues.  The best part is everyone has FUN!  Within the laughter creative juices ignite - these are the moments where the possible is extracted from the impossible.

Ei Partner Program Evolves

Along with the new mission statement and expanded focus areas, the Elemental Impact Partner  program restructured to reflect the active participation inherent within joining Ei. The IMPACT Blog post, Ei: New Mission Statement | New Directions, announces the new mission statement and Product Responsibility and Toxin-Free Environment focus areas.

In February, the sponsor program was renamed yet the joining parameters remained consistent with sponsor-type benefits.  The IMPACT Blog post, Ei Sponsor Program Evolves to Partner Program, chronicles the program evolution into its new name.

Ei's business model is based on corporate funding from organizations who determine active participation makes good, solid business sense.  In addition to a financial commitment, Ei Partners chair programs and committees, present at conferences and serve as industry experts in Ei initiatives. 

For example, Doug Kunneman, NatureWorks business segment director, is the Sustainable Food Court Initiative Chair and Tom Lembo, CleanRiver director of business development, chairs the SFCI Front-of-the-House Recycling Centers committee.  

Brenda & Steve @
Biopolymers Conference
Doug Kunnemann travels the nation with Ei in his capacity as SFCI Chair and contributes his valuable packaging expertise at conferences and in meetings with foodservice professionals. Recently, Steve Davies - NatureWorks director of marketing & public affairs - stood in for Doug at the Biopolymers Conference in the Role Biopolymers Play in Zero Waste Programs session.  FUN, Ei Stragegic Ally Brenda Platt of The Institute for Local Self-Reliance moderated the panel. The ZWA Blog post, Biopolymers End of Life, or is it?, gives an overview of the conference.

In the ZWA Blog post, Second Annual F&B Packaging Meeting, the SFCI committee chaired by Tom commits to publishing FOH Recycling Best Practices; a win for all involved. CleanRiver receives recognition for sharing their industry expertise and contributing graphics for the final best practices report. Owners of food court and other consumer-driven facilities benefit from the downloadable report on the Ei site.

Ei Parters on Indy Tour @
end of Hilex Poly Tour
Ei Partner Heritage Interactive Services inaugurated an important activity:  Ei Partner Tours!  The tours are designed for Ei Partners to tour and understand their fellow partner business operations and activities. The IMPACT Blog post, Ei Partner Tours Launch in Indy, documents the amazing two-days filled with tours, education, camaraderie and fun.

In early November Ei Partners traveled to the Big Apple for the NYC Ei Partner Tours.  Scheduled in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, the group was small and tours limited to Ei Partner Global Enviro and EcoLogic Solutions NYC-based operations.  The IMPACT Blog post, NYC Ei Partner Tours, is an overview of the tours with details on the ELS facility visit. The ZWA Blog post, Food Waste: Too Valuable for the Landfill, is an overview of GE's tour. 

Amy & Chris in Newark
Ei provides zero waste consulting services for communities and Partners often join Ei founder Holly Elmore to share their expertise and experience with community leaders. In October Chris Bradlee of BASF and Amy Moreland of Heritage Interactive Services joined Holly for two-days of zero waste meetings and a conference in Newark. The ZWA Blog post, Ei Team Visits Newark for Zero Waste Education, is an overview of the powerful two days.

The Ei Partner Program includes three Partner levels as follows:

Ei Friend: ($2,500 annual)
The Ei Friend status is designed for young companies with limited funds eager to contribute their expertise and time to Ei initiatives.

Ei Partner: ($5,000 annual)
Ei Partners are the foundation of Ei success! Partner is the perfect description as the entire Ei Team works in unison benefiting from tremendous synergies and diverse expertise.  Active participation is a partner requirement.

With few to no competitors among Ei Partners, the synergies are tremendous along with an openness to share internal operations and programs.  An added benefit of Ei Partner participation is the strong business potential among partners. Selling is not permitted within Ei introductions yet relationship development that segues naturally into business transactions is highly encouraged.

Ei Sustainer: ($10,000 plus annual)
The Ei Sustainer status is for organizations who choose to show increased financial support beyond the Ei Partner level.

Ei is a non-profit under the Internal Revenue Service 501(c)3 provision.  All payments under the Ei Partnership Program qualifies as tax deductible donations

If you are interested in joining the close-knit Ei Partner program and ready to commit to active participation, contact Ei founder Holly 404-261-4690.

The foundation is built and the sustainability rocket launched - stay tuned as the excitement is just beginning ....

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Strong Leadership Maximizes Impact

Elemental Impact moves into new dimensions with an updated mission statement and expanded focus areas.  The IMPACT Blog post, Ei: New Mission Statement | New Directions, announces the exciting shifts and new mission statement. Ei's strong, balanced leadership team is critical to maneuvering the challenges inherent in an organization's evolution. 

This post introduces the Ei Leadership Team who works behind-the-scenes to support the Ei Partners in the important work accomplished.

Ei Chair Scott Seydel
Ei Chair Scott O. Seydel, CEO of The Seydel Companies, epitomizes the balanced leadership necessary to effect long-term changes.   An astute international business executive, Scott built successful enterprises committed to economic and environmental sustainability.

Over the years The Seydel Companies earned national and international recognition for their recycling and resource conservation from many textile and plastic associations, including The Society of Plastic Engineers, the Association of Plastic Recyclers and the International Council.  The Company was the first national winner of the EPA’s Climate Change Champion Award and for four years was selected the top EPA WasteWise small business in the nation.

In addition Scott devotes tremendous time to national and international organizations with environmental missions where he uses his excellent business skills to develop long-term strategic plans filled with current projects.  As Global Green Chair,Scott uses his national and global influence to direct action impacting climate change initiatives.  Scott serves as Chairman Emeritus for the GreenBlue Institute, Board Vice Chairman for the Container Recycling Institute, and Board Director for Green Cross International.  

Laura speaking at the
ZWZ Two-Year Press Conference
Ei works closely with the synergistic organizations where Scott serves in a leadership capacity. An example is the 12-12-12 Sustainable Food & Beverage Packaging meeting co-hosted by Global Green's Washington D.C. offices.  The meeting gathered the non-profits and trade associations throughout the entire food & beverage packaging value chain for a day of presentations culminating in an excellent strategy session. Scott served as the common ground among the majority of the organizations attending the monumental meeting.

Laura Turner Seydel serves as Ei's Environmental Advisor and is a solid force during program development and implementation. From inception, Laura served as the Zero Waste Zones Chair and was active through Ei's program stewardship.  As the founder of the Upper Chattahoochee Riverkeeper and Mothers & Others for Clean Air, Laura is a powerful resource while Ei begins the Toxin-Free Environment journey.

Ei GC Greg Chafee
Ei General Counsel Gregory D. Chafee, an experienced corporate and commercial attorney, is a Partner in the Energy and Corporate & Securities practices at the Thompson Hine law firm.   Greg focuses on energy production projects and provides guidance to clients on matters related to energy efficiency, sustainable construction, environmentally sensitive building practices, and the utilization of green technologies.  In 2012, Greg advised on the development of the first utility scale (20MW) solar project in the State of Georgia. 

In addition to working on Ei legal matters, such as securing trademarks, Greg is a valuable resource within the business community.  As Vice Chair of the American Bar Association (ABA) Energy and Environmental Markets and Finance Committee and a Director of the Georgia Solar Energy Industries Association and Livable Buckhead, Greg serves as a connecting force with legal and environmental organizations.

Ei founder Holly Elmore &
Ei Treasurer Pauline Reynolds
As Ei Treasurer Pauline Reynolds was the guiding force to Ei securing the IRS 501(c)3 non-profit status within nine months of incorporation. A stakeholder at HLB Gross Collins, Pauline specializes in taxation and personal financial planning with a particular emphasis on estate planning. Pauline works with a wide range of closely held businesses to incorporate the financial planning process for business owners and their business entities.

Tax benefits are one of the driving economic components to a wasted food program in the development stages.  Pauline's tax acumen is critical to creating a program in alignment with the IRS regulations.

Scott & Ei Business Advisor
Sylvia Gort
With her thirty plus years in the financial services industry, Ei Business Advisor Sylvia Gort brings a wealth of experience and wisdom to the Ei team. Currently a director at Barclays Wealth ManagementSylvia's banking career began at C&S Bank in commercial lending, with an expertise in construction lending.  Through the numerous bank mergers, Sylvia thrived and was promoted to senior vice-president overseeing the Georgia unit of NationsBank. In 1997, Sylvia transitioned from lending to wealth management

Using her keen business lens, Sylvia’s pertinent questions and stellar advice ensure Ei creates programs that make good business sense for the entire value chain.  With work-in-progress on an office center zero waste template, Sylvia's real estate developer top management relationships are invaluable.

SFCI Chair
Doug Kunnemann
In his role as the Sustainable Food Court Initiative Chair, Doug Kunnemann utilizes his extensive foodservice packaging expertise to ensure the team develops practical solutions for industry zero waste challenges.  When not volunteering for Ei, Doug serves as NatureWorks business segment director with global responsibilities. Doug keeps the Ei team abreast of advances in packaging technology advances and new product introductions.

Ei founder Holly Elmore continues to oversee Ei's important initiatives and works closely with the leadership team. Holly's entrepreneurial spirit shines through as she navigates Ei through the rapids of the ever-evolving, fast-moving sustainability rivers..  

These are exciting times for Ei as accomplishments segue into new opportunities. With a balanced, committed leadership team, Ei is staged to remain in the national spotlight as a sustainability forerunner known for effective results.grounded in solid business sense.

Ei: New Mission Statement | New Directions

Elemental Impact New Mission Statement:
To work with industry leaders to create best operating practices where the entire value-chain benefits, including corporate bottom lines and the environment.  Through education and collaboration, establish the best practices as standard practices.
Since Ei's early 2010 founding, initiatives were zero waste-oriented along with complementary driving forces, such as packaging and food waste destinations.  The Zero Waste Zones took center stage with the Sustainable Food Court Initiative playing a strong supporting role. 

As documented in the Zero Waste in ACTION Blog post, Ei: An Established Program Creator, the National Restaurant Association acquired the ZWZ program with intentions to expand the program nationally within the state restaurant association network. Exciting news as the program may evolve and increase its impact within the depth of the NRA's educational, training and policy resources. 

The NRA ZWZ acquisition substantiates Ei as a creator and incubator for developing programs within the corporate, government and educational communities.  A common phrase in Ei founder Holly Elmore's speaking engagements summarizes the overall driving force in Ei initiatives:
Ei determines what could be done that is not being done and gets it done. Ei brings the possible out of impossible.
Ei's tagline Sustainability in ACTION moved into evolved dimensions of impact and prominence.

An Integrated Approach to
In the zero waste arena, the SFCI moves to a leading role complemented by Recycling Integrity - maintaining maximum material value with minimal energy expended.  Inherent within Recycling Integrity is replacing waste and recycling cost centers with recycling profit centers. The ZWA Blog posts, Emerging Trend: Recycling Profit Centers and Beyond Landfill Diversion, give overviews of the new focus. Replacing End of Life terminology with Perpetual Life Cycle is another emerging focus area - the post, Perpetual Life Cycle Systems - Simplicity is Key, introduces the concept.

With the 2009 ZWZ launch Ei gained national prominence as an expert in the early adoption of commercial food waste collection for composting. Future programs envelope two food waste frontiers: 1> front-of-the-house food waste collection in public venues via the SFCI and 2> wasted food "leakages" in the foodservice produce distribution channels - see the ZWA Blog post, Food Waste Reduction in Foodservice Distribution Channels, for the program concept and inherent challenges.

Using the powerful foundation built over the past years, Ei projects expand into Product Stewardship and Toxin-Free Environments focus areas. Many early zero waste adopters are complete with material management practice shifts within current technology and infrastructure and are eager to move their sustainability needle to new dimensions.  The new focus areas are in the development stages - stay tuned for exciting updates!

The new mission statement emphasizes the role industry leaders play in creating sustainable operating practices as best operating practices.  At Ei's core is ensuring the corporate bottom line is maintained or improved when developing programs and initiatives. Industry leaders ground theoretical solutions into practical applications while Ei team members document easy-to-follow steps for others to follow.  

As 2012 closes into 2013, Ei enters new sustainability frontiers, continuing to bring the possible out of impossible!