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Sunday, December 1, 2013

Another Year, Another Annual Ei Partner Meeting!

Mary Place (Pratt), Chris Bradlee (BASF)
& Amy Moreland (Heritage) traveled
from out-of-state for the meeting
On Thursday, November 21 Elemental Impact  PartnersFriendsStrategic Allies and Advisory Council Members traveled from across the nation to attend the Annual Ei Partner Meeting. It was a powerful day filled with education, updates, camaraderie along with great food and wine. Thank you HLB Gross Collins for providing the perfect venue for the meeting and reception.

With 2013 a transitional year, Ei founder Holly Elmore's "year in review" was filled with important updates ranging from major events to an evolved mission statement to the introduction of three new platforms for living the Ei tagline, Sustainability in ACTION.  

The National Restaurant Association's  Zero Waste Zones purchase propelled Ei into an amazing metamorphosis filled with opportunity and promise for tremendous impact. For details on the purchase, see the Zero Waste in ACTION Blog article, National Restaurant Association Acquires Zero Waste Zones.

Ei Chair Scott Seydel
filmed the presentations
After welcomes, thank yous and introductions, Holly presented on Ei's mission statement evolution and expanding initiatives beyond zero waste. The IMPACT Blog article, New Mission Statement | New Directions, announces the new Ei 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.
Within the new mission statement, Ei takes action in the following platforms:
The IMPACT Blog article, Ei Emerges Strong from Metamorphosis, is an overview of the new platforms.

Sustainable Food Court Initiative co-chair Doug Kunneman of NatureWorks utilized his podium time to highlight the new What We Do and Ei in ACTION website sections. Each SFCI Pilot has a dedicated page complete with team members, unique challenges, accomplishments and work-in-progress.

Anne Blair (SACE), Howard
Connell (GA Tech) & Cindy
 Jackson (GA Tech)
Next on the agenda, Georgia World Congress Center Authority sustainability director Tim Trefzer presented on the strong Ei working relationship via the GA Dome SFCI Event Venue Pilot. Tim's PPT was filled with a pictorial recap of recent Falcons game day recycling tours and post-game food waste | compostable packaging collection for composting destination.

The ZWA Blog article, Winning Recycling Seasons: Team Work Required, is an overview of the first Falcons game day recycling tour with the new Falcons Stadium architects. For pictorial recaps, see the Ei FB albums, 09-15-13 Falcons Game Day Recycling Tour and Refining Falcons Recycling Programs.

Ei Advisory Council Member Wayne King of ERTH Products gave an impromptu update on the Georgia food waste composting permit regulations status. New rules are scheduled for GA Department of Natural Resources Board review in January.

Michael Cheyne w/ ATL Airport
presenting on Green Acres
Next Michael Cheyne, Hartsfield- Jackson Atlanta International Airport director of asset management & sustainability, gave a synopsis of the proposed Green Acres project along with a recap of the City's Sustainability Goals and Initiatives. Ei applauds Green Acres, a state-of-the-art recycling and educational center on 38 available acres at the busiest airport in the world.

Before breaking for lunch, Suzanne Burnes - Sustainable Atlanta executive director - reviewed SA's two main platforms: LookUp Atlanta and EcoDistricts. Ei intends to work closely with SA on Atlanta EcoDistrict development especially those planned for the Atlanta Airport and Downtown, homes to SFCI Pilots.

Immediately following lunch, Atlanta Airport senior sustainability planner Liza Milagro presented on the SFCI - Atlanta Airport status with an emphasis on the Ei | Airport synergies. In addition, Liza gave a preview of the in-progress zero waste plan components. The recent Waste Characterization Study completed under Liza's watchful eye serves as a foundation for planned zero waste action points.

Presentations often spurred spontaneous dialogue among the lively group. Thanks to a question by Cindy Jackson - GA Institute of Technology waste & recycling director - Mark Lanning of Orwak educated the Ei Partners on the latest technology for consumer compacting recycling | trash receptacles that produces maximum results with minimal energy used.

Jeremy Kranowitz (Sustainable America)
Stephanie Barger (USZWBC) &
Lorraine White (M-Pass) @ reception
U.S. Zero Waste Business Council executive director Stephanie Barger gave an overview of the organization's mission along with their Zero Waste Certification program. Exciting news from the USZWBC November 15 press conference:
The U.S. Zero Waste Business Council (USZWBC) announced today that it's awarding Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. with the platinum certification plaque for its achievement in successfully diverting 99.8 percent of its waste from landfill, incineration and the environment. This is the first platinum certification that the USZWBC has given and the highest level possible.
The remaining afternoon sessions were dedicated to Ei's three new platforms: Product Stewardship, Recycling Refinement and Water Use | Toxicity. 

In May 2013 Ei introduced the Water Use | Toxicity platform with the ZWA Blog article, Zero WATER Waste; more than a goal, a necessity. Over the summer, GREASE - Grease, Recycling & Energy Alternative Solutions for the Environments - was reactivated to address the three kitchen-generated grease types: 
  • Spent Grease - used grease from fryers, often referred to as yellow grease
  • F.O.G. - Fats, Oils & Grease - grease collected from grease traps, often referred to as brown grease
  • Airborne Kitchen Grease - grease accumulated in the exhaust system from kitchen operations
Joe Salpietra @ dinner
photo courtesy Scott Seydel
The ZWA Blog article, GREASE: Activating the Zero Waste Evolution, expands zero waste parameters beyond "wasted material" to resources in general. For an introduction to current airborne kitchen grease scenario and how the Grease Lock Filters save water, toxic chemical use, labor and dollars, visit the GREASE: a new frontier filled with economic and environmental promise ZWA Blog article.

Joe Salpietra of Ellis Fibre, manufacturer of GLF, gave a system overview along with the in-process steps for the Atlanta Airport to consider a campus-wide GLF system installation. The potential water, cleaning agent use, labor and cost savings are tremendous.

Recycling Refinement: moving beyond landfill diversion was introduced in an October ZWA Blog article with the same title. Holly explained how Recycling Integrity - maintaining maximum material with minimal energy expended - is the foundation for Recycling Refinement. The ZWA Blog article, Source-Separation Key to Maximum Recycling PROFITS, substantiates how strong on-site recycling programs improve the bottom line.

Holly presenting on the plastic film
recycling template.
photo courtesy of Louis Herrera
During the Recycling Refinement session, Holly announced the City-Wide Plastic Film Recycling Template Pilot in Atlanta. For details on the pilot team, game plan and challenges, visit the ZWA Blog article, If it was easy, it would already be done!,  

A wide range of plastic film generators - event facilities, distribution companies, hotels, airports, universities and shopping malls to name a few - who produce a variety of film types and colors are earmarked as pilot participants. Mark Daniels and Louis Herrera of Hilex Poly gave an impromptu education on plastic film types and their various uses in plastic film recycling systems.

Under Product Stewardship - integrity throughout the entire product life-cycle, an alternative coating for paraffin-based waxed corrugated boxes initiative is in the development stages. Foodservice industry protein and produce transport boxes are the initiative focal point.

Ei Treasurer Pauline Reynolds with
Ei General Counsel Greg Chafee
@ reception
Ei Advisory Council member Chuck Klass takes the helm as the technical expert. Ei Partners | Supporters HMSHostTed's Montana Grill, Piazza Produce and Chemol are charter team members. The ZWA Blog article, Waxed Cardboard Boxes = Landfill Destiny = $$ Lost, lays the foundation for the emerging initiative. In addition to the environmental impact, the bottom line impact of transport packaging choices is a strong educational point.

In time for the annual gathering, the ZWA Blog topped the 125,000 pageviews milestone within hours of meeting registration!!!  Ei's strong cyberspace presence is an Ei Partner benefit.

Annual Ei Partner Meeting PPT presentations, attendee list and agenda are available for download on the Ei Meetings & Events page. For a pictorial recap of the powerful meeting and related dinners, visit the Ei FB album, 11-21-13 Annual Ei Partner Meeting.

Holly & Melissa celebrate
a successful day @ dinner
In alignment with Ei protocol, the partners were treated to great food throughout the day with home baked sweet treats and desserts provided by Holly. The day ended with a wine & cheese reception followed by dinner at an excellent local restaurant.

Success was the theme for the meeting! Kudos to Ei Program Administrator Melissa Selem for orchestrating the well-run, fast-paced meeting.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Ann Arbor Ei Partner Tours

Elemental Impact Partner BASF hosted the Ann Arbor Ei Partner Tours in early August. Fellow partners were treated to two action-packed tour days filled with camaraderie, fun and experiential learning. Time will reveal the business seeds planted among partners.

Indy Ei Partner Tours group
For the past two years Ei Partners welcomed Ei Partners, Strategic Allies, and Advisory Council members to their cities for two-days to share first-hand their business practices and expertise. The first tours were hosted by Heritage Interactive Services in Indianapolis, IN.  As documented in the IMPACT Blog post, Ei Partner Tours Launch in Indy, Interactive set a high standard for others to follow.

The second Ei Partner Tours was held in New York City days after Hurricane Sandy hit the Eastern Seaboard. A small group continued with the tours of Global Enviro's on-site food waste digester installation and EcoLogic Solutions' Brooklyn operations. The IMPACT Blog post, NYC Ei Partner Tours, is a tours overview and the Zero Waste in ACTION Blog post, Food Waste: Too Valuable for the Landfill, is a recap of Global Enviro's installation along with commentary.

In March 2013, HMSHost and Simon Property Group hosted their fellow partners to the Charlotte Ei Partner Tours at Concord Mills, a Simon mall where HMSHost operates the food court operations. Concord Mills is the Sustainable Food Court Initiative Shopping Mall Pilot. The IMPACT Blog post, Charlotte Ei Partner Tours, is a tours overview and the ZWA Blog post, Bring the Possible out of Impossible, details the many successful Charlotte programs.

Traveling in comfort
photo courtesy of Scott Lutocka
Chris Bradlee of BASF was the ultimate host for his fellow partners. For those who arrived the day prior, Chris arranged for a round of golf on the hotel's nine hole course followed by a lively dinner. The pre-tours activities set a fantastic tone for the two following action packed days.

Ensuring his guests traveled in comfort, Chris arranged for a mini-bus to transport folks to the various tour sites. The tours began at the BASF corporate offices with Ei founder welcoming the group along with an Ei update. Chris gave an impressive overview of BASF: The world's leading chemical company with 2012 sales €72.1 billion, 380 production facilities, and 110,000 employees.

The first tour was at the Wyandotte TPU plant, one of the 380 productions facilities. It was intriguing to learn how the plastic pellets are made, the foundation of so many products. Ei integrates within BASF mainly in their biopolymers division - the Ei Partners loved learning first-hand about the diversity within BASF's manufacturing portfolio.

Tour group on Detroit  River
dock @ Portofino's
After the tour, Chris treated the partners to a lovely lunch a few miles down the Detroit River at Portofino's on the River. Though the rain prohibited al fresco dining, the group enjoyed the casual time to explore respective synergies among their organizations. With three roving photographers - Ei Chair Scott Seydel, Ei founder Holly Elmore and Scott Lutocka of Piazza Produce, the river provided ample opportunity to capture the tour energy.

Next on the agenda was the Big House at Michigan State University where Alison Richardson with the Waste Reduction & Recycling Department greeted the group. With 100,000 plus fans filling the stadium on game day, the opportunities and challenges are abundant. Thank you Alison for your patience with the inquisitive group and sharing the current recycling practices at the Big House.

Scott sprinting thru the gate
Oops, the tour almost lost one of the roving photographers within the locked stadium. Luckily, Scott Lutocka is in shape to sprint through the closing gates to cheers!

For a pictorial recap of the Tours Day 1, visit the Ei FB album, Ann Arbor Ei Partners Tours - Day One.

Chris followed Ei tradition by ensuring the group dined in local fashion at one of Ann Arbors eclectic spots. Half the group opted for a practical early evening while the other half enjoyed late night beer, coffee and dessert.

The second day was an early departure for the Ann Arbor RecCommunities MRF - materials recovery facility.  It was inspiring to witness the true community spirit at the MRF. Within the conference room, there was fun evidence the facility doubled as a recycling education vehicle for Ann Arbor's youth and residents.

An artful perspective of
baled aluminum cans
After an impressive Recommunities presentation on the overall company and their Ann Arbor facility, the partners separated into two groups for the MRF tour. As seasoned MRF visitors, the ReCommuntiies facilities impressed the group with its separation process into "clean" material, especially with the glass fragments.

.... but wait, it seemed half the group were MRF Virgins!  How could this happen? Even Zero Waste Warrior Scott Lutocka was on his inaugural MRF tour! A first MRF tour is an eye-opening experience of how much energy is expended to sort single-stream into baled valuable material ready for sale in the commodity market.

The Ei FB album, Ann Arbor Ei Partner Tours - Day Two, includes a pictorial recap of the impressive Recommunities MRF tour.

Rain followed the group keeping the We Care Organics tour confined within the bus. One of the managers came onto the bus to educate on the composting program successes and challenges and answer questions.

Due to the weather the tour adjourned a tad early with most folks departing Ann Arbor around noon. It was an impressive and educational two days with many fertile seeds planted among Ei Partners for further exploration.

Tour host & hero
Chris Bradlee with BASF
At the invitation of Ei Advisory Council member Steve Mojo, Biodegradble Products Institute executive director, NSF International joined the group on the second day to understand the role compostable packaging plays in successful zero waste

Thank you Ei Partners BASF, Chemol, CleanRiver Recycling Solutions, Ellis Fibre, Heritage Interactive Services, Hilix Poly, Piazza Produce and Tomra | Orwak for attending the tours and validating their importance to future business interactions and programs.

Ei Emerges Strong from Metamorphosis

From inception through late 2012 Elemental Impact’s action focus was zero waste-oriented through the Zero Waste Zones and the SustainableFood Court Initiative.  In September 2012 the National Restaurant Association purchased the ZWZ and took over program stewardship. 

The Zero Waste in ACTION Blog post, National Restaurant  Association Purchases Zero Waste Zones, announces the monumental acquisition. Ei was propelled into an amazing metamorphosis filled with opportunity and promise for tremendous impact. 

First on the agenda was evolution of the Ei mission statement and focus beyond zero waste. The IMPACT Blog post, New Mission Statement | New Directions, announces the new Ei 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.
Committed to effective action, Ei projects create easy-to-implement templates that make good business sense. Within the new mission statement, Ei takes action in the following focus areas:

Product Stewardship:
Under Product Stewardship Ei works with corporate consumers to activate their Power of Demand to effect changes in packaging and other behaviors. The ZWA Blog post, Consumer Demand: A Powerful Voice to Effect Change, marks Ei's first steps in Product Stewardship along with an overview of several farm tours.

alternative coated cardboard
educational examples
The inaugural Product Stewardship initiative is replacing paraffin-based waxed cardboard with alternative coatings. As documented in the ZWA Blog post, Waxed Cardboard = Landfill Destiny = $$ Lost, waxed cardboard is "trash", costing the foodservice operator landfill hauling and tipping charges. Alternative coated boxes offer a cost-effective solution for produce | protein transport that are recyclable or compostable. 

In August, Ei took the first action steps in the alternative coated box initiative at Piazza Produce during the Indy Zero Waste Tours. The Ei FB album, 08-13 Indy Zero Waste Tours, gives the pictorial recap of the pre-tour meetings on waxed cardboard education. Chemol renewed their Ei Friend status to participate in the alternative coated box initiative. 

Recycling Refinement:
Over the years Ei grew from a “zero waste cheerleader” to working with zero waste veterans on refining their recycling practices. With Recycling Refinement, Recycling Integrity maintaining maximum material value with minimum energy expended – flowed as a new focus area with an emphasis on source-separation at the material generation site. The ZWA Blog post, Source-Separation Key to Maximum Recycling Profits, gives specific examples of improved recycling profits when material is separated and baled on-site.

Ei Strategic Ally Container Recycling Institute's Understanding Economic and Environmental Impacts of Single-Stream Collection Systems white paper documents how single-stream systems achieve their goal of increasing "diversion rates" yet result in decreased actual recycling due to contamination. 

To reflect the SFCI center stage focus within Recycling Integrity, the What We Do website page was rewritten along with a new page for each of the three SFCI Pilots:
In mid-2012 the SFCI Atlanta Airport Pilot entered a holding pattern when the new airport concessions contract went into effect over an 18 month period. Ei Partner HMSHost opened the International Terminal concessions under the new contract in May, 2012. The SFCI Team agreed to wait until the International Terminal was open a full year before addressing recycling refinement within operations, 

The ZWA Blog post, SFCI Atlanta Airport: ACTION Resumes!, documents the Pilot's return to action mode via a SFCI Team tour of the International Terminal. During the holding period, Republic Services was awarded the airport's waste and recycling contract. Republic hauls the single-stream recycling collected to the nearby Pratt Industries MRF - material recovery facility. With team spirit, Republic joined the Ei Supporter program and is enthusiastic to work with the SFCI Team on refining the airport's recycling practices.

Ei Partner Myles Cohen of Pratt
Recycling with Ei Chair Scott Seydel
Recycling Integrity demands organizations to understand the final destination, including the journey along the way, of material generated during operations. Ei orchestrated a series of tours for Michael Cheyne - Atlanta Airport director of asset management & sustainability, to the Pratt MRF and other potential destinations. The ZWA Blog post, "Seeing is Believing" - the magic of tours, documents the SFCI-hosted tours.

Pratt Industries joined the Ei Partner Program to share their expertise, resources and time on the SFCI Pilots along with other initiatives in the development stages. At their North American headquarters campus in Conyers, GA, Pratt is building an amazing recycling complex to support their recent contract with the City of Conyers and other surrounding communities. First Generation Energy joined the Ei Friend Program in honor of their close Pratt relationship and long-time Ei friendship.

Substantiating Ei's important work, 2013 Ei Partner renewals were strong among the SFCI Team including BASF, CleanRiver Recycling SolutionsHeritage Bag, Heritage Interactive Services, NatureWorks, and Orwak.

Orwak balers are the work horses
for plastic film recycling 
Atlanta serves as the pilot city for development of a metro-wide plastic film recycling template. Intrinsic in the template is collection, consolidation and market infrastructure creation for moderate plastic film generators. Ei Friends M-Pass and Hilex Poly renewed their status to work closely with Orwak on creating the plastic film recycling template.

Thanks to Ei's powerful relationship with Ei Strategic Ally the U.S. Zero Waste Business Council, Atlanta is the host city for the 2014 USZWBC Annual Conference. The ZWA Blog, Atlanta: Host City for 2014 USZWBC Conference, announces the conference along with Ei's conference partner role.  

Early Atlanta zero waste pioneers are eager to stay involved in Ei initiatives and are joining the Ei Supporter program. Charter ZWZ Participants Affairs to Remember and Fresh Point are the most recent to re-commit to Ei since the NRA ZWZ purchase.

Water Use | Toxicity:
Ei took first steps in the Water Use | Toxicity focus area via publication of the ZWA Blog post, Zero WATER Waste: more than a goal, a necessity, in May 2013.  The post laid the foundation for Ei orchestrating a Grease Lock Filter Restaurant Pilot by an independent engineer.  

Ei Partner Ellis Fibre manufactures a patented, disposable grease filter that is placed in front of the kitchen exhaust system baffle filters. EF's Grease Lock Filters collect 90% plus of the airborne kitchen grease particulates before entering the exhaust system. By eliminating grease build-up in the system, the nightly baffle filter cleaning is generally reduced to weekly; the number of third party contracted kitchen exhaust system cleanings are significantly reduced.  

GREASE Team @ ATL Airpot
The ZWA Blog post, GREASE: a frontier filled with economic & environmental promise, announces the report release that documents the water | labor | toxic chemical and cost savings achieved by each pilot restaurant.

Ei Task Force GREASE -  Grease Recycling & Energy Alternative Solutions for the Environment - returns to action mode with an expanded grease definition to include the following three types generated in foodservice operations:
  • Spent Grease - used grease from fryers, often referred to as yellow grease
  • F.O.G - Fats, Oils & Grease - grease collected from grease traps, often referred to as brown grease
  • Kitchen Hood Grease - airborne grease accumulated in the exhaust system from kitchen operations
The ZWA Blog post, GREASE: Activating the Zero Waste Evolution,  announces GREASE reactivation via a meeting with the SFCI - Atlanta Airport team. At the meeting, the airport took the first steps in assessing the types, quantities and current destinations of grease generated at the airport concessionaire operations.

Ei emerged from an amazing metamorphosis time with renewed vigor in three separate, yet intertwining focus areas. The plethora of Ei participation renewals and new members substantiates Ei lives its tagline - Sustainability in ACTION.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

A Revolutionary Evolution - going from a linear to circular economy

image from Sense of  Events Blog
Until relatively recent history a flat, linear and finite Earth was common belief. Although 6th century BC astronomer Pythagoras introduced the spherical Earth paradigm and third century BC Greek scholar Eratosthenes of Cyrene calculated the Earth's circumference, it took Christopher Columbus' 1492 Atlantic voyage to dispel the flat Earth myth. With the fear of "falling off the Earth" gone, a new world of possibilities and discoveries emerged.

Humanity is in the midst of a similar paradigm shift from a linear economy to a circular economy. The entrenched world economy is based on a linear mentality of produce, use and dispose without regard to nature's no waste systems. A circular economy is modeled after nature's perfection where systems flow in holographic patterns where all benefit and waste is nonexistent.

A  spiral is indicative of growth &
mirrors our DNA.
Image from Next Wave
In the Zero Waste in ACTION Blog posts, Perpetual Life Cycle System - simplicity is key and The Perpetual Spiral, the evolution from a zero waste focus to nature's no waste systems is introduced as an Elemental Impact platform. Here are several quotes from the posts:
In nature "waste" does not exist, rather a perpetual life cycle rearranges molecular structures so the finished product for one use is the basis for its next life. 
Remember death is always followed by birth - we are in the process of birthing a civilization where technology-based solutions mirror nature's perfect regeneration processes. 
Emerging from prominent publications - Cradle to Cradle: Remaking the Way We Make Things by William McDonough & Michael Braungart  and Biomimicry: Innovation Inspired by Nature” by Janine Benyus as two examples - the circular economy platform is a major stride in moving away from linear production systems. As with nature, in a circular economy there is no waste generated and products are made for reuse, whether in their current form or as the raw material for another use. Renewable energy is integral to a successful circular economy.

For a circular economy to replace linear structures in-place, the WE Consciousness is a necessity within the economic culture. Ei introduces the WE Consciousness in the ZWA Blog post, Zero Waste is a Team Sport.

The Ellen MacArthur Foundation is at the helm of the economy's revolutionary evolution as the home to the Circular Economy 100, a platform to re-think the future. Committed to action, the CE100 is a global platform bringing together leading companies, emerging innovators and regions to accelerate the transition to a circular economy over a 1000-day (3 year) period. 

A CE100 overview presentation is available for download on the Ei Reference Materials & Tools page. The short video, What is the Circular Economy 100, is an excellent, interesting introduction.

At the foundation of the CE100 is the McKinsey & Company issued paper,Towards the Circular Economy: Economic and business rationale for an accelerated transition, commissioned by the EMFThe January 2012, paper quantifies the tremendous resource savings inherent in evolving from a linear to a circular economy along with other benefits.

Every six months the CE100 hosts two-day acceleration workshops that include core circular economy topics and elective sessions focused on common challenges, best practices, emerging trends and key learnings for circular economy innovation.

On June 19, the CE100 hosted their first annual summit in London with an impressive program consisting of three sessions: Macro Challenge and Opportunity,  Circular Economy - Solution Space and Rethinking Design with topics covered in a series of presentations. 

Wendy & Eric Schmidt w/ Ellen
photo from
In the evening the EMF hosted a Schmidt-MacArthur Public Lecture. Eric Schmidt - Google Executive Chair - was the keynote speaker and Dominic Waughray, World Economic Forum, chaired a stellar panel: Dayna Baumeister (Biomimicry 3.8), Professor Michael Braungart (Erasmus University),  William McDonough (McDonough Advisors), Jeremy Oppenheim (McKinsey & Company) and Professor Walter Stahel (Product Life Institute).

Taking our first global footsteps, Ei Chair Scott Seydel attended the summit as a CE100 guest.

Paradigms are shifting with a new world of possibilities ready to emerge. Like Columbus grounded the Earth as spherical, soon a major event will serve as a catapult  to shift humanity from a linear way of life to a circular economy.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Atlanta Sustainability Leaders Recognized

The Atlanta Business Chronicle published their inaugural Who's Who in Sustainability list on the 2013 Summer Solstice. Inherent within the publication is recognition of the important role sustainability plays in corporate, community and personal economic vitality. In the opening copy, the ABC states their commitment to including a broad spectrum of leaders:
In this section we highlight 50 men and women who are making strides in sustainability throughout metro Atlanta, including those working in the nonprofit, government, business, education and public-private partnership sectors.
It is important for main stream media, especially business-oriented outlets, to place sustainability among their top-tier topics. Astute business leaders know sustainability is integral to successful business practices. Beyond bottom line improvement, sustainable operating practices are often demanded by their customers and employees.

Holly & Laura
Photo courtesy of Leonardo Ruscitto
In addition to Elemental Impact founder Holly Elmore's listing, Ei relationships are intertwined among many of the featured leaders. Ei Environmental Adviser Laura Turner Seydel is listed for her work as the Captain Planet Foundation Chair along with co-founding Mothers & Others for Clean Air and the Chattahoochee Riverkeeper.  

Laura's prominent role in Atlanta's sustainability platform underlies several additional listings: Judy Adler & Michael Finley - The Turner Foundation and Sally Bethea - Chattahoochee Riverkeeper. In addition, Laura along with her husband Rutherford Seydel - eldest son of Ei Chair Scott Seydel - work closely with Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed and City of Atlanta director of sustainability Denise Quarles on the City's Power to Change program, a pathway for the Mayor's goal to make Atlanta a top-tier city for sustainability.

Sharon Douglas, Michael & Kyle Mastin
accepting 2012 ABC Enpact Award 
Atlanta is home to two of the three Sustainable Food Court Initiative Pilots - SFCI Atlanta Airport and SFCI Georgia Dome - and the leadership for each pilot is included in the list. Michael Cheyne, Atlanta Airport director of asset management and sustainability, was the driving force for the Atlanta Airport's groundbreaking compostable packaging concessionaire contract provision. The Zero Waste in ACTION Blog post, Atlanta Airport Makes Bold Sustainable Statement, announces the contract provision. For an SFCI Atlanta Airport Pilot update, read the ZWA Blog post, SFCI Atlanta Airport: ACTION Update.

Holly & Tim during a  GA Dome tour.
photo courtesy of Susan Montgomery
Tim Trefzer, Georgia World Congress Center Authority director of sustainability, is recognized for his stellar performance as chair of the 2013 Atlanta Final Four sustainability committee; the Georgia Dome hosted the games that brought over 100,000 fans to downtown Atlanta for games, concerts and events. To learn about the committee's success under Tim's leadership, read the ZWA Blog post, Final Four green footprints continue after the games.

Ei's close bond with Suzanne Burnes, Sustainable Atlanta executive director, is grounded in the Zero Waste Zones' early days when Suzanne was Georgia DNR Department of Sustainability assistant director. As an Ei Strategic Ally, Sustainable Atlanta serves on the Atlanta-based SFCI Pilot Teams and is integral to several soon-to-be announced food waste and recycling initiatives.

The maize of intertwining relationships among Atlanta's sustainability leadership exemplifies the WE Consciousness necessary for success is alive and healthy in our grand city.

Note: The WE Consciousness is introduced in the ZWA Blog post, Zero Waste is a Team Sport