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Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Ei Celebrates Five-Year Anniversary

GFA, founded by Holly:
Ei's predecessor organization
On February 5, 2010 Elemental Impact (Ei) incorporated as a Georgia non-profit corporation and embarked on an incredible journey. Whew, the first five years were action-packed while the Team lived the tagline: Sustainability in ACTION! The article is a snapshot of work completed, new initiatives launched, honors | recognition received intertwined within the milestones surpassed - all within a mere five years!

Ei was originally formed as the home for the Zero Waste Zones (ZWZ) launched in 2009 as a Green Foodservice Alliance (GFA) program within the Georgia Restaurant Association.

When the National Restaurant Association (NRA) purchased the ZWZ in late 2012, Ei was propelled into an amazing metamorphosis to create a new identity & initiatives. The August 2013 IMPACT Blog article, Ei Emerges Strong from Metamorphosis, introduces the three new platforms: Product Stewardship, Recycling Refinement and Water Use | Toxicity.

Written as a synopsis of the Annual Ei Partner Meeting, The IMPACT Blog article, Ei 2014: A Year of Evolution, gives an in-depth overview of the work-in-progress and accomplishments within the three platforms. At the meeting Ei founder Holly Elmore gave the Annual Ei Year in Review presentation with the following opening slide:
2012: Year of Accomplishments | Completions - in late 2012 the ZWZ were sold to the NRA catapulting Ei into a major metamorphosis. The ZWA Blog article, The NRA Acquires ZWZ, announces the purchase. 
2013: Year of Transitions | Introductions - until fall 2013 Ei flowed within the metamorphosis stage. As the year drew to a close, the three-platforms approach for Ei initiatives emerged. 
2014: Year of Foundations | Evolutions - in 2014 the platforms were grounded with initiative launches and supporting taglines.
Ei Partners Louis Herrera of Hilex
 Hilex Poly & Doug Kunnemann
of NatureWorks @ 2014 Annual Mtg
A common phrase during the ZWZ days "Collaboration is Key to Success" is at the foundation of Ei's plethora of accomplishments. With a strong partnership program, the Ei Team works in a cooperative spirit that spurs creativity, initiates action and focuses on shifting paradigms. Many of the GFA sponsors and advisers remain strong Ei Partners, Strategic Allies and Supporters.

In celebration of Ei's Big FIVE Birthday long-term Ei Supporter Affairs to Remember Caterers (ATR) planted a tree in Ei's honor! On Saturday, February 21, Holly and Travis Taylor with ATR attended the Trees Atlanta weekly tree planting. WOW, Trees Atlanta selected a six foot sacred Ginkgo tree for the ceremonial planting. According to Ted Andrews in Nature Speak:
The Ginkgo is the sole survivor of a family of trees that was around when the dinosaurs walked the earth. It is considered a living fossil with the ability to survive millions of years of change and even the soot and grime of modern cities. 
Ginkgo tree sign
A perfect selection, the Ginkgo tree is a testimony to Ei's commitment to creating corporate operating practices that balance, complement and eventually benefit the Earth. For a pictorial recount of the tree planting, visit the Ei FB album, Affairs to Remember plants tree in Ei's honor. Thank you ATR - your tree planting gift speaks what words cannot say.

With amazing timing, the combined Ei Blogs - The IMPACT and Zero Waste in ACTION (ZWA) - surpassed the coveted 250,000 pageviews milestone during the tree planting. The IMPACT Blog article, Ei Blogs Tops 250K Pageviews, celebrates the achievement along with supporting impressive stats.

As chronicled in The IMPACT Blog article, Ei Awards, Recognition & Awards, Ei was honored throughout 2014 for achievements that spanned back to the GFA days. 

Ei Team w/ Zero Waste Award
At the U.S. Zero Waste Business Council (USZWBC) conference, Holly was presented with the Zero Heroes 2014 Zero Waste Promoter of the Year award. With grateful tears Holly accepted the honor during the first-day luncheon presentation. The ZWA Blog article, Atlanta Shines as Zero Waste Conference Host City, is a recap of the USZWBC conference from Ei's perspective including the prestigious honor.

Awards continued in the fall when Holly was the recipient of the Green Ribbon Award at the Atlanta Les Dames d'Escoffier International 14th Annual Afternoon in the Country. The prestigious award was given in honor of Holly's sustainability work in the foodservice industry dating back to the GFA. The referenced article includes the many other honors and recognition received during the monumental year.

Ei's journey is well-documented in blog articles, Ei FB albums and detailed website pages. The Milestones page lists significant events in reverse chronological order on a monthly basis that contributed to current success. Supporting article, album and page links with detailed information are included in the listings. Here is a short milestone synopsis by year:

  • February 05 - Ei incorporates as a Georgia non-profit corporation.
  • May 24Compost, The Quiet Hero makes his debut presentation, via spokesperson Holly as ZWZ Director, in a 90-minute solo presentation at the NRA Show in Chicago. The PPT presentation is available for download on the Ei Speaking Engagement page.
  • November 18 Ei receives the IRS letter granting 501(c)3 non-profit status.
Holly & the Chris Triad
Indy Ei Partner Tour group
Ei Chair Scott Seydel in front
S-SMRT Team "picking the
Dome" for compostable items
Airborne Kitchen Grease Team
on ATL roof
With 2014 the "Year of Foundations | Evolutions," 2015 is destined as the "Year of  ACTION!" The stage is set, foundation built, team in-place for Ei's incredible journey to catapult into amazing new dimensions of impact, recognition and respect!

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Ei Blogs Top 250K Combined Pageviews

On February 21, 2015 the Elemental Impact (Ei) blogs - Zero Waste in ACTION (ZWA) and The IMPACT - surpassed the monumental 250,000 pageviews landmark! Mere days earlier the ZWA Blog topped 185K pageviews while The IMPACT is nearing 65K pageviews.

In February 2013, the ZWA Blog article, ZWA Blog Hits 75,000 Pageviews!, celebrates the milestone with examples of the valuable role LinkedIN plays in developing long-term, substantial relationships. 

When the ZWA Blog surpassed 100K pagviews in July 2013, the ZWA Blog article, ZWA Blog: A Powerful Industry Resource & Voice, chronicled Ei's evolution from a zero waste cheerleader to current work in Recycling Refinement, moving beyond landfill diversion. Below is an excerpt from the article:
Authored by Ei, the ZWA Blog articles document the evolution of zero waste from concept to emerging industry standard, tell the story of zero waste pioneers and warriors who shifted paradigms in materials management, and shine light on fallacies within accepted recycling practices. 
Screen shot of milestone
On February 05, 2014, The IMPACT Blog reached the 50K pageviews benchmark; The IMPACT Blog article, Ei Blogs Attract Strong Global Readership, announces the milestone and lists blog achievements over the years. Articles on The IMPACT chronicle Ei industry activities, summarize Ei's evolution and document Ei's work in realms other than Recycling Refinement.

For example, Ei 2014: A Year of Evolution is an in-depth synopsis of work within the three Ei platforms: Product Stewardship, Recycling Refinement and Water Use | Toxicity. In addition, the article is an overview of the powerful 2014 Annual Ei Partner Meeting.

In 2013, the Ei Blogs evolved to on-line magazines as most posts are in-depth articles with readership continuing long after publication. For the ZWA Blog, the all-time most popular articles are:
Perry Kranias w/ HMSHost in
most popular blog article
Until recently, the Reduce, Donate, Compost article remained the most popular current article with strong, consistent readership.

For The IMPACT Blog, the following articles are the all-time most popular articles:
With a total of 314 blog articles, the ZWA Blog to date plays the leading role in creating Ei's powerful cyberspace voice. Over the past year, the average pageviews per article increased from 475 to 600 while the number of annual articles published decreased. In 2012, the ZWA Blog published 73 new articles, in 2013 31 articles and a further decline to 22 articles in 2014.

This post marks the 119th article published on The IMPACT Blog. Over the past year the average per article pageviews increased from 475 to 550 pagviews; the annual number of published articles remained relatively consistent over the past three years at a rate of +|- 12 articles.

EPA Charlotte Grant panel
@ 2014 USZWBC Conference
A common ground among the blogs is the global readership: roughly 60% of the readership for both blogs is from the United States. The remaining 40% of the readers are scattered throughout the globe. Ei Blog readership is predominately from the PC world with 74% logging into articles from Windows, 13% from MAC operating systems, and a smattering of other sources with minimal cell phone access.

For the ZWA Blog, Google is the main referral source followed by the blog itself, FB and Twitter (via On The IMPACT Blog, referrals are predominantly from the blog with negligible Google referrals. Per the analytics, it appears direct site visits are the predominant traffic source on both blogs.

A strong cyberspace presence requires collaborative effort. In addition to engaging the various tools available, working in tandem with Ei PartnersSupporters and Strategic Allies is essential to driving traffic.

In April 2013 The IMPACT Blog article, A Powerful Cyberspace Voice: A Creation Guide, was published in celebration of achieving the combined 100K pageviews milestone. The Guide gives Six Rules to follow with final one the most important: be a renegade, share your passion and let go of what others say "should or should not be done."

Ei is the the U.S. Zero Waste Business Council (USZWBC) Media Partner for their annual Conference and beyond. The USZWBC understands the value of Ei's powerful cyberpace network and the benefits it brings to their organization. Recent USZWBC ZWA Blog articles include 2015 Zero Waste Conference: A Star-Studded Event and Third Party Certifications Edge Industry Towards Zero Waste Economy.

EPA Grant time after Knights mtg
As a sub-grantee under the EPA Region 4 Scaling Up Composting in Charlotte, NC to GreenBlue's Sustainable Packaging Coalition, one of Ei's responsibilities is to document the successes under the two-year grant. The Ei Charlotte Visits page details the grant work along with supporting ZWA Blog articles; Charlotte: A Land of Opportunities documents the early February Charlotte Grant Team visit.

Another powerful industry resource are the 125 plus Ei FB Albums documenting Ei's powerful journey. Most albums support a particular blog article and provide the pictorial recap of the event, meeting or tour. There are several comprehensive albums that document work-in-progress on an Ei initiative; later these albums will support a case study or formal replication template. The Source-Separated Materials Recycling Template: building a city-wide network album chronicles the multi-year S-SMRT efforts and substantiates a common Ei phrase "If it was easy, it would already be done."

1st mini-bales delivery to Atlanta
Penitentiary for re-baling into std size bales
Sustainability in ACTION - Ei's tagline - is well documented on the Ei website. Within the pages, the relevant blog articles and albums are listed to provide detailed information on Ei's important work. The site is kept current with activities generally documented within days of completion.

Ei founder Holly Elmore - author of the blogs, website and the "Ei Voice" - has an impressive personal cyberspace following that she often uses for Ei benefit.

Mainstream public relations firms recognize the Ei Blogs as valuable media outlets. In mid 2014 Holly began receiving invitations to interview prominent individuals along with press releases targeted at journalists.

The Ei Blogs are integral to the 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.
Documentation and sharing of industry leader success is integral to establishing "best practices as standard practices."  It requires perseverance, tenacity and creativity to publish articles that warrant strong readership on a continual basis.

Well established and impeccably documented, the Ei journey is gaining momentum and making significant impact on evolving status quo | "business as usual."  Stay tuned as the fun is merely beginning ....