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Saturday, August 24, 2013

Atlanta: Host City for 2014 U.S. Zero Waste Business Council Conference

Laura @ podium proclaiming:
"Recycling is Sexy!"
An early pioneer in the zero waste movement, Atlanta is an ideal host city for the U.S. Zero Waste Business Council third annual conference scheduled for May 7 & 8 at the Westin Buckhead. Atlanta's Eco Warrior Laura Turner Seydel opens the conference as the keynote plenary speaker.

In 2009 Atlanta scored national media attention with the Zero Waste Zones launch. The City Aims for Zero Waste CNN story ran during prime viewing time along with homepage listing during Earth Week 2009. Later in the year, the New York Times front-page article, Nudging Recycling from Less Waste to None, featured ZWZ Champion Steve Simon, Fifth Group Restaurants partner. The Ei Media page includes a complete listing of ZWZ media.

Supported by the Sustainable Food Court Initiative Team, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport included a provision in the 2011 new concessionaire contracts requiring food vendors to use compostable foodservice packaging and separate food waste for off-site composting.

The ZWA Blog post, Atlanta Airport Makes a Bold Sustainable Statement, announces the contract provision. As the SFCI Airport Pilot, the Atlanta Airport received a 2011 Going Green Airport Award - the ZWZ Blog post, Atlanta Airport SFCI Pilot Wins National Award, gives the award details.

In 2012 the National Restaurant Association purchased the ZWZ. With the NRA serving as zero waste stewards, Elemental Impact's focus evolved to recycling refinement based in Recycling Integrity - maintaining maximum material value with minimal energy expended. Atlanta's pioneers are eager to participate in several new innovative platforms. The ZWA Blog posts, GREASE: Activating the Zero Waste Evolution and GREASE: A new frontier filled with economic & environmental promise, expand the definition of waste beyond material and diversion beyond landfill or incineration. 

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.  An aggressive, yet achievable, goal is to showcase the plastic film template at the 2014 USZWBC Conference.

As documented in the ZWA Blog: Powerful Industry Resource & Voice article, the 2011 USZWBC launch established zero waste as vital to business acumen and signaled the Ei "zero waste cheerleader role" was accomplished. The USZWBC mission and vision are grounded in the important role zero waste plays in best corporate operating practices:

The U.S. Zero Waste Business Council mission is to educate, inform and document the performance of Zero Waste Businesses using scientific methods to help businesses and communities become more healthy and sustainable.

The U. S. Zero Waste Business Council will create a solid foundation that advances the integrity and credibility of Zero Waste. Zero Waste Businesses save money, are more efficient, manage risk, reduce litter and pollution, cut greenhouse gases, reinvest resources locally, and create jobs and more value for their business and the community.
Ei Ptrs @ 2012 USZWBC Conference
An Ei Strategic Ally, the USZWBC and Ei work closely together to maximize the tremendous synergies between their respective organizations. In June 2011 Ei founder Holly Elmore presented in the hospitality tract at the first annual USZWBC Conference in Costa Mesa, CA. Whether participating as speakers, sponsors and | or attendees, Ei Partners were well represented by BASF, CleanRiver Recycling  Solutions, Heritage Interactive Services and Piazza Produce

The ZWA Blog post, U.S. Zero Waste Business Council hosts first rate conference, is an overview of the impressive inaugural conference.  

Ei panel:  Holly, Chris, Scott
& Perry
photo courtesy of Amy Moreland
At the second annual USZWBC Conference in May 2013, Ei orchestrated the Zero Waste is a Team Sport panel of Ei Partners - Scott Lutocka (Piazza Produce), Chris Bradlee (BASF) and Perry Kranias (HMSHost - Tampa Airport). As the conference media sponsor Ei documented the impressive program in three ZWA Blog posts:

For the third annual conference in Atlanta, Ei is the USZWBC Conference Partner as well as media sponsor. Working closely with USZWBC executive director Stephanie Barger and her team, Ei is facilitating introductions to local and regional industry leaders for plenary speaker and break out session presenter invitations. 

With ample planning time, the 2014 USZWBC Conference is staged for stardom. Atlanta is once again ready to shine in the nation's sustainability spotlight. 

... stay tuned for conference updates.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

GREASE: a new frontier filled with economic & environmental promise

airborne grease generated in
stove top high heat saute
Airborne grease and smoke generated as a by-product of kitchen operations are a fire hazard, an environmental concern and costly to clean. Local and national regulations require commercial foodservice operations to install a kitchen exhaust system that evacuates heat, grease effluent, moisture and smoke from the cooking area. Consisting of a hood, baffle filters, ducts and exhaust fan, the kitchen exhaust system must be monitored and maintained in accordance with the codes.

Most kitchen exhaust systems are inspected monthly or quarterly and require a system cleaning due to grease build-up. On average an exhaust system cleaning uses approximately 350 gallons of water along with toxic chemicals necessary to remove grease from the system. In addition the metal baffle filters are generally cleaned nightly, requiring labor, water and toxic cleaning chemicals.

GLF collects grease particulates
before they enter the exhaust system
The post-cleaning greasy, toxic water is released through the operator's grease trap or directly into the local sewer system. Either way the toxic chemicals flow into the local water treatment system or directly into waterways.

Elemental Impact Partner Ellis Fibre (EF) manufactures a patented, disposable grease filter that is placed in front of the baffle filters. EF's Grease Lock Filters (GLF) collect 90% plus of the kitchen grease particulates before entering the kitchen 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.

HMSHost-operated Pei Wei @
ATL Airport participated in pilot
To substantiate and quantify the water, labor and toxic chemical savings, Ei joined forces with Compliance Solutions International for a three-restaurant, eight-week GLF system pilot. The Water, Chemical, & Cost Savings in Commercial Kitchens By Using Grease Lock Filters, A Report on Restaurant Pilots prepared by Jay Parikh, CSI president is available for download on the Ei GREASE - Grease Recycling & Energy Alternative Solutions for the Environment, Water Use | Toxicity and Reference Materials website pages.

Each of the pilot restaurants realized a cost-savings by installing the GLF system and chose to continue using the filters post pilot. Cost-savings were derived from reduced labor hours, fewer third party contracted cleanings, and reduced water usage and sewage treatment charges. The big winner is the local community who benefits from lower commercial water demand and a reduction in toxic chemicals entering the sewer system and|or waterways.

grease build-up on roofs casues
 costly repairs & maintenance
In addition, the GLF approach to Airborne Kitchen Grease (AKG) enhances fire safety, reduces roof repairs & maintenance caused by grease accumulation, increases HVAC energy efficiency with cleaner fan blades and other moving parts, and lowers the community's carbon footprint due to fewer cleanings by contracted third party kitchen exhaust system maintenance companies.

As a Sustainable Food Court Initiative Atlanta Airport Pilot team member, Ei Partner HMSHost agreed for Pei Wei, located in the International Terminal, to participate in the pilot. Working closely with the HMSHost team, Kyle Mastin - airport concessionaire manager - was impressed with the GLF pilot results at Pei Wei.

At an Ei | Atlanta Airport meeting last week, Kyle showcased the pilot success with enthusiasm for broader use at the airport. The ZWA Blog post, GREASE: Activating the Zero Waste Evolution, introduces the GREASE task force and mentions the airport's interest in assessing the grease generated at the terminal concessionaires along with potential on-site energy options.

GREASE Team @ ATL Airport
In the ZWA Blog post, Zero WATER Waste: more than a goal, a necessity, Ei set the foundation for launching the Water Usage | Toxicity focus area. Within the post, the GLF system is introduced along with a grease scenario and system overview.

As a proactive solution to AKG, Ei intends to support the widespread use of the GLF in commercial kitchens with a three-tier approach:

  1. Installation of GLF systems - goal is to establish a metrics tracking system to quantify the economic and environmental impact for the foodservice operator and the community at-large.
  2. Certification of filter compostability - filters are made of lambs wool with no metal; EF intends to pursue the ASTM Standards testing required by BPI in their compostable packaging certification program.
  3. Utilization of grease captured in filters - grease is valuable in waste to energy technologies; determine how to best use the grease captured in the filters, whether extracted or within the filters.
GREASE is entering a new industry frontier with Ei leading the charge. Stay tuned as Ei determines the economic benefits, substantiates the environmental stewardship and develops an industry-wide action plan for kitchen exhaust system grease. EXCITING TIMES, indeed!

GREASE: Activating the Zero Waste Evolution

Grease Recycling & Energy Alternative Solutions for the Environment 

When the Zero Waste Zones launched at the acclaimed February 2009 press conference, the collection of spent grease for the local production of biofuel was one of the program's participation criteria. Spent grease is used kitchen fryer oil, often referred to as yellow grease. At the time, meeting the criteria was easy. 

The Southern Alliance for Clean Energy had an established grease collection system complete with a retail fueling station for their locally produced biofuel. For an overview of the 2009 SACE biofuel operations, watch the popular CNN video: City Aims for Zero Waste.

In 2010 the Energy Tax Credit renewal was delayed causing strife within a fragile, emerging industry. Most of the Atlanta market biofuel production facilities closed along with the SACE retail station. For Elemental Impact, the scenario revealed the ZWZ Criteria was not grounded in solid economics; the biofuels industry seemed dependent on the Energy Tax Credit for economic sustenance.

Working closely with SACE, Ei launched GREASE - Grease Recycling & Energy Alternative Solutions for the Environment, a task force to address the biofuels criteria viability. First on the agenda was addressing the "local" requirement. With out-of-state options available, Ei expanded local to include facilities within a 500-mile radius.

The spent grease ZWZ Criteria was grounded in highest good use versus landfill diversion. Spent grease is a valuable commodity with foodservice operators receiving rebates for grease collection. Next on the GREASE agenda was to address the final destination; the majority of the spent grease was destined for rendering plants as an ingredient in animal feed.

McKay Johnson of CEB &
Anne Blair of SACE @ opening
To learn first-hand about spent grease destinations, Roy Edwards, Georgia Department of Natural Resources Sustainability Division, and Ei founder Holly Elmore visited the Griffin Industries rendering plant in Ellenwood, GA. The ZWA Blog post, The By-Products of Mass Food Production, is a tour overview.

When the National Restaurant Association purchased the ZWZ in 2012, any revisions to the spent grease program criteria landed in their court. Complete with addressing spent grease destinations, the GREASE task force went into a holding pattern. For details on the NRA ZWA purchase, read the ZWA Blog post, National Restaurant Association Acquires Zero Waste Zones.

In 2012 SACE reopened their Atlanta biofuel retail station in partnership with Clean Energy Biofuels. The ZWA Blog post, Atlanta Retail Biofuel Station Opens, recaps the grand opening and the Ei FB album, 06-21-12 Biodiesel Fueling Station Grand Opening, is a pictorial overview.

grease accumulation in kitchen
exhaust system ducts
Once again working with SACE, GREASE 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
With spent grease addressed, the GREASE Team will focus on FOG and kitchen hood grease. Current destinations are shifting for FOG. Until the recent past, the common FOG destination was direct land application or the landfill. Improved technologies and an expanding biofuels market support "cleaning" FOG with the grease going to biofuel production and food particulates sent for composting or to the landfill.

installed GLS
In the ZWA Blog post, Zero WATER Waste: more than a goal, a necessity, the importance of addressing kitchen hood grease, along with its related water use and contamination, is introduced. Ei joined forces with Compliance Solutions International for a three-restaurant pilot substantiating the Grease Lock System airborne grease collection success. For pilot details, see the ZWA Blog post, GREASE: a new frontier filled with economic & environmental promise.

Understanding the intrinsic kitchen grease value, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport took the first steps in assessing the types, quantities and current destinations of grease generated at the airport concessionaire operations. In August, SACE and Ei met with an airport team to begin the assessment process. 

GREASE Team @ ATL Airpot
As the Sustainable Food Court Initiative Airport Pilot, the Atlanta Airport is an industry leader in adopting sustainable practices for its food court and restaurant operations. 

In 2011, the Atlanta Airport won a Going Green Airports Award for the groundbreaking compostable packaging provision in the new airport concessionaire contracts. The ZWA Blog post, Atlanta Airport Makes Bold Sustainable Statement, announces the new contract provision and the Atlanta Airport SFCI Pilot Wins National Award post is an overview of the prestigious award.

With GREASE reactivated, the definition of "waste" in zero waste expands beyond traditional recyclable material to include grease generated in commercial foodservice operations. Water usage in commercial operations is another expanded zero waste component. Diversion rates will soon broaden from "diversion to landfill" to sewer systems and other waterways. The Zero Waste Evolution is activated!

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Source-Separation Key to Maximum Recycling PROFITS

Baled cardboard ready
for sale
Astute industry leaders know zero waste practices improve the bottom line and material source-separation maximizes bottom line improvement. As moderate to major material generators shift from single-stream recycling systems to on-site source-separation, companies eliminate single-stream hauling charges and receive revenue for sold material, often in the form of rebates. Result: improved bottom lines!

Note large generators with "clean" single-stream recycling collection negotiate a "no-charge" scenario for material hauling. Due to the significant material volume, these companies realize substantial bottom line improvement by source-separating material for sale, even without cost reductions. In addition, valuable plastic film is considered a containment in single-stream collection. Thus, many industrial operations are paying landfill charges to dispose of a valuable material instead of baling it for sale. 

An Elemental Impact team converged on Indianapolis August 01 & 02 for zero waste facility tours hosted by Piazza Produce and Heritage Interactive Services. The two-day tours substantiated the imperative role on-site MRFs - material recovery facilities - play in profitable recycling programs.

simple, on-site MRF
At the on-site MRFs, material is source-separated and baled (or otherwise aggregated) for sale to a manufacturing company as raw material or in the commodities market. The increased labor is more than offset by cost-savings and revenue and equipment purchases generally have an impressive ROI - return on investment.

For the first tour, Zero Waste Warrior Scott Lutocka - Piazza Produce facility manager - hosted the Ei group at the only zero waste foodservice distribution center in the nation. The following day the group traveled to the Subaru Automotive of Indiana zero waste manufacturing plant in Lafayette where Interactive is responsible for their groundbreaking zero waste program.

The tour festivities began with an excellent lunch at Ted's Montana Grill. Doug Kunnemann - Sustainable Food Court Initiative co-chair and Natureworks Global Segment Leader, Food Service - joined Ei founder Holly Elmore along with Fred Wellons and Clark Seydel of Chemol to strategize on first action and educational steps in alternative coatings for paraffin-based wax coated produce cardboard boxes.

Doug, Fred, Clark & Scott
@ Ted's for lunch
In Indy for the tours, Paula Owens - TMG purchasing and sustainability manager, joined the lunch when not meeting with the restaurant team. TMG may take a leadership role in shifting produce packaging standards to recyclable and | or compostable containers. The ZWA Blog post, Waxed Cardboard = Landfill Destiny = $$ Lost, is an overview of a 2012 National Restaurant Show educational session dedicated to the waxed cardboard scenario.

An enthusiastic team from ScottsMiracleGro corporate offices in Marysville, OH joined the Ei group for the Indy Tours.  

After a pre-tour educational meeting on current waxed cardboard practices, the official tours began with Scott's overview of Piazza's zero waste journey, complete with props. The ZWA Blog post, Zero Waste is a Team Sport, details the Piazza journey from a prior tour.

Pallet of shrink wrap
The Piazza mini-MRF was a tour focal point where gaylords are used to collect separated materials for baling. Creative and thorough, Scott's diligent research found useful homes for most of the material generated during operations; material evolved from costing Piazza landfill hauling and tipping charges to generating revenue (or at least no disposal cost.)

In their operations, Piazza Produce receives and uses a significant amount of shrink wrap that secures products on pallets. Shrink wrap is a valuable commodity, with rebate revenue rivaling cardboard. Scott worked with his supplier to purchase pre-stretched wrap by the pallet. By purchasing pre-stretched wrap, Scott eliminated in-house waste from unusable ends. In addition, Scott implemented standard practices where drivers bring back wrap used on customer pallets, rather than disposing of it in a convenient dumpster. Close to 100% of shrink wrap purchased is baled for recycling.

Scott one of his IS2 poster
with metrics summarized in graphs
During the tour wrap-up meeting, Scott quantified the Piazza Produce zero waste program profitability. As an Interactive IS2 client, Scott has easy access to his program's volume and monetary metrics summarized in impressive, self-explanatory graphs. A future blog post on the importance of metrics tracking will give detailed examples of the IS2 platform.

Dinner at The Rathskeller was an excellent venue to continue dialogue in a relaxed, fun environment. It was an early evening as the group headed to Lafayette the following morning for the Subaru tour. Paula remained in Indy to meet with TMG purveyors.

The August 2013 tour was the third Ei Subaru visit hosted by Interactive. In July 2012 Interactive hosted the inaugural Ei Partner Tours that included the first Subaru tour. The IMPACT Blog post, Ei Partner Tours Launch in Indy, is an Indy Ei Partner Tours' overview. In September 2012 an Ei Team visited Subaru to learn about their foodservice operations and on-site in-vessel composting system.

Doug with Michael Gulich &
Bob Guptill of Purdue
Purdue University folks joined the Ei group for the August 2013 Subaru tour. Due to the group size, the tour was via the extensive catwalk system and gave a different perspective from prior tours. At the tour's end, a smaller group of the Purdue and ScottsMiracleGro folks, along with Holly, were treated to an on-the-ground MRF visit.

The Interactive-operated MRF is the backbone of the Subaru recycling profit center. With over 3,000 employees in the 2.3 million-square foot facility, the Subaru plant generates a significant amount of material. At the in-house MRF, material received is weighed and cataloged by work station for Subaru internal analysis. It was inspiring to witness the efficient, well-organized MRF in operation.

After the MRF tour, the entire Ei group met at a local Irish pub for a wonderful lunch, a perfect ending to an action-packed two days. The group returned to their respective hometowns with new industry friends and resources.

For a tours' pictorial recap, visit the Ei FB album, 08-13 Indy Zero Waste Tours.

Ei Industry Tours are excellent vehicles to learn first-hand about zero waste success via experiential education. Common ground in the 2013 Indy Tours was the imperative role on-site material source-separation plays in maximizing recycling center profits while maintaining Recycling Integrity - maintaining maximum material value with minimal energy expended. Validation was complete by witnessing similar results at a moderate material generator: Piazza Produce and a major generator: Subaru Automotive of Indiana.

Scott & Holly @
2013 USZWBC Conference 
Another common ground for the tours was the U.S. Zero Waste Business Council 2013 Conference hosted in Cincinnati. Scott, Holly and Amy Moreland of Interactive were conference speakers and met attendee Cheryl Prinster of Scotts on the first day. The tour materialized from conference conversation when Cheryl joined the Ei dinner. For overviews of the powerful USZWBC conference, visit the following three posts:  Know Your Trash Up Close & PersonalZero Waste Success Requires WE Consciousness, and Zero Waste is a Team Sport, a powerful USZWBC conference panel.

There is no destination in the zero waste journey. Industry leaders continue to refine their practices with a goal of zero waste evolving to NO WASTE, emulating nature's perfection.

Saturday, August 3, 2013

ZWA Blog: A Powerful Industry Resource & Voice

On July 30, 2013 the Zero Waste in ACTION Blog surpassed the coveted 100,000 pageviews milestone!!!! 

Authored by Elemental Impact, the ZWA Blog posts 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. 

Launched in conjunction with the acclaimed 2009 Zero Waste Zones press conference led by the U.S. EPA Region IV interim director, the ZWA Blog initially promoted the ZWZ success. In addition, the blog served as a "zero waste cheerleader" rallying support for companies to understand material, not waste, was generated in their operations; material source-separation for recycling made good business sense and improved the bottom line. 

Over the next two years, zero waste goals evolved into a standard industry practice by astute corporate leaders. The 2011 U.S. Zero Waste Business Council launch established zero waste as vital to business acumen and signaled the ZWA Blog cheerleader role was accomplished.  

Buzz, Chris Moyer (NRA) & Holly
after IFSS session
At the 2011, International Foodservice Sustainability Symposium hosted in partnership with the National Restaurant Association, Recycling Integrity - maintaining maximum material value with minimal energy expended - was introduced by Ei founder Holly Elmore and Ei Partner Buzz Chandler with Asean | Stalkmarket. The ZWA Blog post, Recycling Integrity @ IFSS - The Chris & Holly Show with an Added Buzz, is an overview of the conference session.

Refining recycling practices and delving into final destinations plays a prominent role in blog post topics. Based on the Container Recycling Institute's Understanding Economic and Environmental Impacts of Single-Stream Collection Systems white paper, the ZWA Blog post, Single-Stream Recycling Controversy, documents how single-stream systems achieve their goal of increasing "diversion rates" yet result in decreased actual recycling due to contamination. 

Further substantiating the fallacies inherent within single-stream recycling, the ZWA Blog post, Single Stream Recycling: The Good, The Bad & The Ugly, is a synopsis of an U.S. EPA webinar along with commentary. Maintaining a positive perspective, ZWA Blog posts, Where Oh Where Does our Recycling go? and Beyond Landfill Diversion, validate how "diversion rates" often misrepresent the true recycling inherent within programs. 

Partial SFCI CM Team
launching plastic film recycling pilot
In the ZWA 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 Ei platform. The WE Consciousness is introduced in the Zero Waste is a Team Sport post and the Concord Mills: Power of "WE" in ACTIONpost gives examples of the magic inherent within team work.

The supply chain's critical role in zero waste achievement, mainly in product and transport packaging, is introduced in the Supply Chain Critical to Zero Waste Success post. In the Consumer Demand: A Powerful Voice to Effect Change, the corporate consumer is called to action using the power of their spending dollars to demand packaging changes. The Waxed Cardboard = Landfill Destiny = $$ Lost post gives an example of packaging that creates trash instead of a valuable material sold in the commodities markets.

Ei's tagline Sustainability in ACTION is well-documented in blog posts:

Sustainable Food Court Initiative - The three pilots are committed to creating sustainable operating practices in food courts amidst many challenges. Blog posts document their successes:
ATL Airport Team accepting
Award for sustainability
Ei ToursTours are excellent vehicles to learn first-hand about industry practices and fellow partner business expertise. Ei hosts industry and partner tours designed for experiential education, strategic planning and bonding among the Ei Team:
Ei Partner Myles Cohen of Pratt
Recycling with Ei Chair Scott Seydel
  • Industry ToursPrior to embarking on program | practice development, Ei strives to understand current industry practices and baselines. Tours of industry leader operations is an effective, efficient and fun avenue for garnering industry education and support. The Seeing is Believing - the magic of tours post is a recap of a recent industry tour marathon.
  • Ei Partner ToursEi Partners are committed to working as a team to develop flexible programs and practices that evolve along with shifts in technology, circumstances and economic parameters. Education is essential to weave integrity within program | practice development. Twice per year Ei Partners meet for hosted tours to learn about fellow Partner operations and expertise. The blog posts, Bring the Possible Out of Impossible and Food Waste: Too Valuable for the Landfillrecap recent tours.
  • SFCI ToursThe SFCI Team tours pilot facilities to garner first-hand experience of baseline practices in-place. Tours are an excellent vehicle to establish strong working relationships with on-site managers responsible for operations and facility maintenance. Blog posts, SFCI Atlanta Airport Pilot: ACTION Resumes and Georgia Dome SFCI Team Tour, document two of the many tours.
Ei ConnectsEi plays a valuable industry role by introducing organizations and individuals who share synergies for powerful relationships and action. Several diverse, prominent introductions are documented in blog posts:
2012 F&B Pkging Mtg Attendees
  • Annual F&B Packaging Meeting - Ei and Global Green host an annual December gathering in Washington D.C. of the food and beverage packaging value chain non-profits and trade associations for a day of camaraderie, sharing and strategizing. The blog post, Second Annual F&B Packaging Meeting, gives a 2012 meeting overview.
  • National Restaurant Association | U.S. Composting Council - Ei orchestrated a Washington D.C. NRA | USCC introductory meeting with executives from the respective organizations. The blog post, Collaboration is Key to Success, announces the formal Memorandum of Understanding executed between the NRA and the USCC. 
  • Industry Pioneer Introductions - At Ei’s request, Cindy Jackson, Georgia Institute of Technology waste & recycling director, hosted Tim Trefzer, Georgia World Congress Center Authority director of sustainability, for a campus tour of GA Tech's award-winning recycling program. The ZWA Blog post, ZWZ Participants Work Together, is a tour overview. Subsequent to the introduction, Tim and Cindy developed a strong professional friendship filled with powerful synergies.
Ei in the MediaNational, regional and local media recognizes the importance of Ei projects with impressive coverage. Blog posts give an overview along with commentary of the publicity received. Here are several prominent examples of blog posts promoting Ei in the media:
Spoil Alert author during her
interview @ ATR
HMSHost-Tampa Airport Perry Kranias
with food awaiting donation
The ZWA Blog is an excellent vehicle to share Ei Partners' & Friends' tremendous accomplishments. Ei Partner HMSHost is featured in the blog's most popular - essentially "viral" with consistent strong readership - post, Reduce First, Donate Second & Compost Third.

In the Lighten Up: Be Heard, Be Effective post the Ga Tech highly effective recycling systems are featured after a lead-in with The Adventures of the Recycle Kitty video. CleanRiver's Three C's - Culture, Communication, Collection - a platform for successful recycling programs - is introduced in the Evolution of the Three R's post.

At the Climate Action's COP 16, NatureWorks was a major player announcing new products made with Ingeo™ in a wide array of industries and educating on the low carbon impact of their manufacturing process. NW's industry impact was documented in the NatureWorks Expands Environmental Impact post.   

Ei Ptrs Amy Morelenad &
Chris Bradlee
Ei travels to cities educating on how to implement successful recycling and food waste collection programs. The blog post, Chattanooga Building a Green Brick Road, is an overview of the City of Chattanooga zero waste workshop orchestrated by Ei Strategic Ally The Institute for Local Self-Reliance

For the City of Newark zero waste workshop and meetings, Ei Partners Amy Moreland of Heritage Interactive Services and Chris Bradlee of BASF supported Holly in the educational sessions.The Ei Team Visits Newark for Zero Waste Education post is an overview of the important Newark visit.

A tad racy posts are intended to motivate folks to broaden perceptions. A few examples include: Is Plastic Really Kin to the Devil?, Bottle Caps ON or OFF????, Is Recycling Sexy?!!, and Power of the Voice posts.

Doug Kunnemann (NW)
@ podium as SFCI Co-Chair
Validating the ZWA Blog as a powerful industry voice, Ei serves as media sponsor for prominent industry conferences via published blog posts:
With the late 2012, NRA ZWZ purchase (documented in the NRA Acquires ZWZ post), Ei expanded the zero waste definition beyond material to include water. The Zero WATER Waste: more than a goal, a necessity post introduces Ei's Water Usage | Toxicity Focus.

Water & toxic chemical saving
Grease Lock
Although published in blog format, the ZWA Blog serves as Ei's on-line magazine via in-depth articles much longer than the typical blog post. With a global following, the blog readership is gaining momentum each week and articles are re-published on sustainability-oriented sites.

While the ZWA Blog topics remain within the zero waste | recycling realms, sister blog The IMPACT publishes articles on a wide range of topics. As of this post publishing, The IMPACT Blog is closing in on 35,000 pageviews - impressive, especially considering only one or two articles are published monthly.

Blog readership is augmented in cyberspace on LinkedIN discussions in recycling | zero waste groups, a multitude of tweets, posts on the Ei FB page, on the Ei site news items & pages, and via Ei Partner networks. On the Ei Pinterest page blog posts are "pinned" on fifteen boards defined by category topics.

Ei Chair Scott Seydel & Ei founder
Holly Elmore 
Another important industry resource are the Ei FB albums. Over 80 well-documented albums are organized with an overall synopsis along with individual picture descriptions and support many blog posts via pictorial recaps. Ei Partners and Strategic Allies often use album pictures in their PPT presentations or other promotional | educational material. 

The first 100,000 pageviews established The Zero Waste in ACTION Blog as a powerful industry resource and voice. With an amazing foundation, the blog is certain to gain notoriety, readership and escalated impact. Together WE are staged to shift consciousness to a place where the corporate community evolves beyond zero waste to NO waste!