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Sunday, September 25, 2011

Columbia Rock'n in the Green

The City of Columbia, SC hosted their annual 'Green is Good for Business' annual conference in partnership with the SC Department of Health and Environmental Control.  With excellent attendance, the conference was an opportunity for SC businesses to understand the green side of business is also the profitable side.

Harris DeLoach, Sonoco Products Company Chairman & CEO, gave an excellent keynote session, Sustainability and the Bottom Line, to begin the day's events.  Thomas Deem and Anthony Soto of The Boeing Company followed with Boeing's Approach to Sustainability as it pertains to the construction and operations of the new N. Charleston plant.

Holly speaking @ conference
The remainder of the day was filled with informative break out sessions along with plenty of time to network with the conference exhibitors.  Zero Waste Zones Director Holly Elmore presented a morning session on Zero Waste Zones, Mobilizing an Industry to Make a Difference.  With Tom Sponseller, SC Hospitality Association President & CEO, in the audience the session was a perfect tie-in to the ZWZ-Columbia in the exploration stage.  See the ZWZ Blog, ATL Zero Waste Team Hosts SC Hospitality Tour, for an overview of the August SCHA & City of Columbia ZWZ Atlanta tour.

Ron McCoy, General Manager of Select Comfort's Irma, SC plant, gave an inspiring and fun talk on the plant's zero waste success story.  In his session Roy emphasized going green is evolutionary - a journey, not a destination.  To control contamination, the plant's recycling compactor has a pad lock with only three designated employees permitted to fill it with material.  The Select Comfort story is a prime example of how green|zero waste efforts build strong bottom lines while treating the environment with respect.  

Back side of SC Capital
According to the conference brochure, all session PPT presentations will be available on the City of Columbia Climate Protection Action Campaign site.

The Elemental Impact FB album, 09-13-11 Green is Good for Business Conference - Columbia, SC. gives a pictorial recap of the conference along with some lovely pictures of the SC State Capitol grounds.  Thanks to City Councilman Daniel Rickenmann's generosity and hospitality, the two evenings in Columbia were filed with excellent company, cuisine and wine!

At the conference there was talk about a second Atlanta ZWZ tour for the government and area recyclers|haulers.  Keep informed on the ZWZ Blog as the pathway is built for ZWZ-Columbia, the first expansion city!

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