SUSTAINABLE ISSUE 03/15
B U S I N E S S
M A G A Z I N E
UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS AT AUSTIN MR MITCH JACKSON
Vice President of Environmental Affairs and Sustainability, FedEx Corporation.
ALSO FEATURED THIS ISSUE AASHE • SOLIDIA TECHNOLOGIES
S U S TA I N I N G T O M O R R O W. T O D AY
B U S I N E S S
M A G A Z I N E
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CONTENTS ISSUE 03/15
Welcome to the latest issue of Sustainable Business Magazine Sustainable Business Magazine aims to spread awareness of the values of sustainability, as well as the brilliant ways in which organizations continue to meet challenges and champion corporate social responsibility. Carl Vreugde, Partner and Associate at Urecon, speaks to us about the role the company’s products play in heating and cooling systems, as well as new technologies which are set to transform district energy efficiencies. Following this we continue our focus on the Canadian energy industry with a detailed feature on Innergex Renewable Energy, in which Director of Communications and Sustainable Development Marie-Josée Privyk talks about how they are promoting and delivering sustainable energy. A feature on the Waterloo Institute for Sustainable Energy (WISE) focuses on how they’re contributing to the energy industry by providing research, innovation, and highly qualified professionals. The latest installment of our AASHE ‘Sustainable Campuses’ series features McMaster University, Mohawk College, the University of Texas at Austin, the University of Vermont, and the University of Southern Mississippi. The series is being run in partnership with AASHE (the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education) and celebrates the continuing efforts of North American universities to develop and operate sustainably, as well as the role they’re taking in educating students and the wider public about the importance of sustainability. The series is prefaced by a foreword from AASHE’s Executive Director Meghan Fay Zahniser. As always, details of upcoming sustainability events can be found on our events calendar. This issues’ highlighted event is the Canadian Solar Industries Association’s (CanSIA) Game Changers Awards Gala. The event was held on the 26th of March 2015 and focused on the accomplishments of men and women within the Canadian solar energy industry. This issue’s three guest editorials are once again provided by a selection of industry experts. A technology report by Tom Schuler, President and CEO of Solidia Technologies®, explains how they’re bringing sustainable innovation to the cement and concrete industry. The issue also includes a social report by Angie Knowles of ECO Canada and an economic report by Dr. Keith Skene, Director of the Biosphere Research Institute and author of ‘Sustainable Economics: Context, Challenges and Opportunities for the 21st-Century Practitioner’. A Q&A with Mitch Jackson, Vice President of Environmental Affairs and Sustainability at FedEx, explores how they’re promoting growth and global connectivity in a responsible and sustainable manner. We hope that you find this issue both interesting and inspiring. Thank you for reading. The Sustainable Business Magazine Team
Technology Report Solidia Technology
Economic Report Sustainable Economics
Social Report ECO Canada
Innergex Renewable Energy Inc.
Waterloo Institute for Sustainable Energy (WISE)
Q&A Mitch Jackson VP of Environmental Affairs and Sustainability, FedEx Corporation
The Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE)
University of Texas at Austin
University of Vermont
University of Southern Mississippi
CanSIA Game Changer Awards Gala 2015
FRONT COVER IMAGE
THE TIPELLA CREEK RUN-OF-RIVER HYDROELECTRIC FACILITY, LOCATED IN BRITISH COLUMBIA. IMAGE PROVIDED BY INNERGEX RENEWABLE ENERGY INC.
© SBM Media Ltd 2015. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any form for any purpose, other than short sections for the purpose of review, without prior consent of the publisher.
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TOM SCHULER, PRESIDENT & CEO, SOLIDIA TECHNOLOGIES®.
By Tom Schuler, President and CEO, Solidia Technologies®.
Driving Sustainable Innovation to Market:
It can’t just be green, it has to be better Attracting investors for green technology is not easy. Persuading industries to change is even harder. Trying to do both as a start-up can be daunting. Solidia Technologies® is a cement and concrete technology company. We are bringing sustainable innovation to a market that is 2000 years old. The last time this industry embraced a major product innovation was about 200 years ago with the invention of Portland cement. To say we are targeting an industry resistant to change is an understatement. Our job at Solidia isn’t only to develop sustainable technologies; it’s to make it possible for industry to adopt them. To drive innovation to market you need the right people, a compelling vision, collaborators who give you market insight and credibility, and enough time. To remain competitive, the business itself must be sustainable. The start-up must prove the technology is commercially viable. Make it a good business, then make it green. Target the largest market possible and demonstrate broad applications within it. Focusing too much attention on exit opportunities diverts energy from increasing the value of the company. Focus on the input, and the output will come. 2 | SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS MAGAZINE
Concrete is the most widely used material in the world after water. Cement is used to bind concrete together, giving it the strength needed to have the durability required for a wide variety of applications around the world. Cement production, however, is the second largest emitter of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the world. The industry knows this is a challenge they must address, and they have set goals to dramatically reduce their carbon footprint. Changing the industry requires a change with minimum cost, maximum impact, and added value. Ordinary Portland cement (OPC) uses water to cure and releases about 800kg of CO2 for each ton produced. It also takes 28 days to reach maximum strength. By contrast, Solidia Cement™ recycles 60 to 100 percent of water used and cures with CO2, reducing carbon emissions by up to 70 percent. CO2-cured Solidia Concrete™ is also more durable, costs less to produce than traditional concrete applications, and can reach maximum strength in less than 24 hours. It can be adapted to any concrete formulation, production method and product specification. Targeting the estimated US $1 trillion concrete and US $300 billion cement markets, Solidia has overcome two of the biggest obstacles to disruptive innovation: ease of implementation and cost of adoption. Our technology addresses an urgent, global business
and societal need while profitably supporting an industry seeking to improve production methods. The Cement Sustainability Initiative of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development set 2050 CO2 reduction targets for the global cement industry. If the industry were to adopt Solidia’s technologies today, it would achieve those 2050 goals in three years. Collaboration is key. I have had the unique perspective of experiencing this from two distinct vantage points: from the giant global leader (I led global businesses for DuPont in building materials) and now at a start-up. These players have a symbiotic relationship: Startups often manage risk better than large industry players, while established sector leaders provide real-world, practical market intelligence, research and development (R&D) support, and access. Solidia’s R&D collaborators, who come from industry, government, and academia, include Lafarge, a world leader in building materials, on research in concrete applications, The Linde Group, a global leader in the international gases market, on CO2 supply and delivery, and CDS Group, the world’s leading curing and drying specialists, on the design and manufacture of curing chambers to accommodate the CO2-curing process. The U.S. Federal Highway Administration supports Solidia with a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) to examine transportation infrastructure applications, and the National Energy Technology Laboratory has co-funded a four-year R&D project as part of its CO2 Storage Program. Ongoing testing continues in laboratories at Rutgers University, where the original generation of the technology was developed, as well as Purdue University, Ohio University and the University of South Florida. We have also attracted investors, including Bill Joy, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (KPCB), Bright Capital, BASF, BP, LaFarge, and Total Energy Ventures, who have elevated sustainability to a core purpose and value social impact as well as profits. At Solidia we have taken a complex technology and made it simple and applicable anywhere in the world. Combined with an innate
Our job at Solidia isn’t only to develop sustainable technologies; it’s to make it possible for industry to adopt them. sense of urgency, our team quickly combines market insight from our market and technology partners with leading-edge technology to produce a credible solution to a problem that the industry has long sought to fix. This collaborative approach, along with a focused effort to target individual markets that need a better solution, is resulting in unusually rapid acceptance from an industry that values performance. The fact that it is sustainable is readily embraced, but it has to work first. It can’t just be green, it has to be better. c
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By Dr. Keith Skene, Director of the Biosphere Research Institute.
– built on sand, not rock? We need to take our place on the seesaw of social, ecological, and economic sustainability, preparing to be sub-optimal for the sake of overall balance, and to practice bioparticipation, not biomimicry. 4 | SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS MAGAZINE
If you are going to attempt to build a better economic future that embraces both society and the environment, at least make sure you don’t use rotten wood. I suppose it all started with Kenneth Boulding and his famous analogy, Spaceship Earth. This suggested that the planet was a closed system, and that sustainability represented perfect cycling of waste. If we mimicked the planet in our sustainable economic programs, then all would be well. Tighten the industrial cycles and the spaceship could boldly go wherever it wanted. This has brought about many schools of thought, from natural capitalism and biomimicry to the circular economy of China and Europe, and from zero waste to waste-is-food. Nature can be fixed, and if it can’t, then it can be replicated. As the Marquis de Condorcet famously said “nature has fixed no limits on our hopes”.
DR. KEITH SKENE.
Ecologists, from Eugene Odum onwards, knew differently. These founding principles of sustainable economics are rotten to the core and completely unscientific. The earth is not a closed system, quite the opposite. Ask the dinosaurs if you don’t believe me. Oh hang on, you can’t, because they are all dead. When our atmosphere was filled with dust after a huge comet the size of Mount Everest struck Mexico, the sun was blocked and life quickly began to die. The biosphere relies on a vast fleet of gold-filled trucks arriving from the sun each day, bringing the energetic currency needed to run a debt ridden natural economy. The natural economy is not self-sustaining, in fact it is profligate, generating huge amounts of waste and requiring vast external funding in order to maintain some semblance of order in an entropic universe. Thinking that we can build a human economic model on the principles of nature is a ridiculous idea. The laws of thermodynamics (and the dinosaurs) testify to this. The waste-is-food argument sounds great. Recycle everything. However, simultaneously, these same ideologists tell us that we should aim for zero waste. Yet waste-is-food (industrial symbiosis) relies on waste. You can’t recycle your cake and eat it. Another school of thought posits the extended life concept, where products last longer, reducing the manufacturing and increasing the service sector. Again this is not a natural principle. Nature relies on rapid turnover, not slow turnover. A bamboo chopstick is a lot more sustainable than a plastic chopstick, because it quickly recycles and does not need technological nutrients to make it.
The final potentially fatal flaw in modern sustainable thinking is our fixation with carbon. It is all about carbon. Carbon, carbon, carbon (spoken as in a Monty Python sketch). Yet there are three horsemen of the modern apocalypse, not one. In addition to climate destabilization, we have death by fertilizer (eutrophication), and habitat destruction. These latter two pose just as big a threat to planetary life support as carbon does, but we only talk about the big C. Replacing one corroded link in a chain will do us no good if two others snap. We need to take our place on the seesaw of social, ecological, and economic sustainability, preparing to be sub-optimal for the sake of overall balance, and to practice bioparticipation, not biomimicry. More fundamentally, we need to incorporate science fact, not science fiction. “This ain’t no spaceship” (last words of T-rex; RIP). c Author - Dr. Keith Skene is director of the Biosphere Research Institute (www.biosri.org) and a former Australian Rhodes Scholars Association Scholar. He lives in eastern Scotland with his wife, son, and numerous foster children. He is co-author, along with Prof. Alan Murray, of Sustainable Economics: Context, Challenges and Opportunities for the 21st-Century Practitioner. Greenleaf Publishing, available via Stylus Publishing LLC: (https://gre.presswarehouse.com/Books/BookDetail.aspx?productID=412347) SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS MAGAZINE
By Angie Knowles, ECO Canada
Who is Canada’s typical sustainability professional? Sustainability is the new reality for many industries in Canada. Over 50,000 professionals work in environmental, economic, or social sustainability and 18% of Canadian organizations have at least one sustainability worker on staff. The total number of environmental professionals nationwide has grown from 682,000 in 2010 to over 730,000 in 2013.
Sustainability professionals will need to know not only about existing regulations, but also how to stay up-to-date when these regulations change.
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Recognizing the potential of Canada’s sustainability sector, Environmental Careers Organization (ECO) Canada has conducted ongoing environmental labour market research, examining everything from typical employers and career paths to average salaries and key competencies. One of our most recent reports, Careers in Sustainability: Current Job Trends and Future Growth, has helped paint an intriguing portrait of the Canadian sustainability workforce. Here’s how a “typical” sustainability professional fits in the picture. WHO ARE THE TOP EMPLOYERS? Canada’s typical sustainability professional works for governments, research institutions, or not-for-profit organizations. In fact, these three types of employers accounted for an impressive 51% of the sustainability workforce. Employers rely on their sustainability staff to manage risk, increase returns on capital, and drive business growth. More than half of the organizations have made sustainability an integral part of their business by incorporating sustainability teams across multiple departments or business units.
TYPICAL WORKER CHARACTERISTICS If we could use just one defining characteristic to describe the average sustainability worker, it’s expertise. As Michael Kerford, President and CEO at ECO Canada, notes, “Sustainability is a complex, multidisciplinary area of practice. In 2013, we added a sustainability specialization to our Environmental Professional (EP) certification program to recognize the growing number of professionals who hold at least five years of sustainability work experience. Within less than two years, over 200 certified EPs now have the sustainability specialization.” Sixty-eight percent of sustainability professionals hold at least a bachelor’s degree in such fields as business, public administration, physical or life sciences, engineering, natural resources, and conservation. About a third of senior sustainability professionals go the business or public administration route. Most sustainability professionals are at the mid to senior point of their careers with anywhere from four to eight or more years of experience. Over 55% of the sustainability workforce has at least eight years of experience. WHAT ARE THE CAREER OPTIONS? The average sustainability worker is most likely to work as a Sustainability Specialist, helping organizations comply with environmental regulations and operate in a financially and socially responsible manner. Average annual starting salaries for this role are $40,649/ year with ranges up to $75,000/year for experienced professionals. Sustainability professionals need the same key competencies to advance their careers. These competencies include the ability to interpret, enforce, and comply with environmental regulations and standards, implement and monitor sustainable development strategies or programs, and partner with stakeholders. At the mid-point in their careers (five to seven years of experience), Sustainability Specialists might make lateral career moves to roles as Senior Sustainability Consultants or Sustainability Researchers. The most common career step up is into a role as a Sustainability Officer or Chief Sustainability Officer (CSO), overseeing the development and implementation of sustainability strategies, programs, and policies in their organizations.
Figure 1: Career pathways for sustainability professionals. Source: Careers in Sustainability: Current Job Trends and Future Growth, ECO Canada.
WHAT DOES THE FUTURE HOLD? Sustainability professionals can look forward to a continued phase of rapid change. One key component of sustainability work involves interpreting and implementing environmental regulations, and Canada’s regulatory landscape is constantly evolving. Sustainability professionals will need to know not only about existing regulations, but also how to stay up-to-date when these regulations change. At the same time, sustainability workers will also need to adapt to an evolving labour market in which more jobs integrate environmental practices, knowledge, and skills. Today, an estimated 1.8 million Canadian workers spend at least some portion of their time performing tasks related to environmental protection, resource management, or sustainability. This number will continue to grow as more businesses adopt sustainable practices to reduce costs, increase operational efficiencies, and comply with regulations. One thing is for sure: The typical sustainability professional of the future will be part of a dramatic evolution in Canada’s environmental labour market. c About ECO Canada ECO Canada’s vision is to build the world’s leading environmental workforce. Led by our President and CEO, Michael Kerford, we work towards this vision by training and certifying Canada’s environmental professionals, offering the country’s premier environmental job board and training academy, and setting the standards for certified Environmental Professionals (EPs). All of our services are responsive to industry demand with insight from ongoing labour market research. Learn more about our services and research for environmental careers at: www.eco.ca SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS MAGAZINE
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THE HEAT Carl Vreugde is a partner and senior director at Urecon, manufacturer of pre-insulated piping for commercial use. He talks to Sustainable Business Magazine about the important role the companyâ€™s products play in thermal pipe systems as well as new technologies set to transform district energy efficiencies.
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Established in Quebec, Canada, in 1969, Urecon has utilised a void-free U.I.P. insulation process at its two plants in Quebec and Alberta to manufacture insulated
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piping systems that are ready to install once they leave the factory. This proprietary system bonds rugged polyurethane foam insulation directly to any core pipe
currently available. Due to their durability, Urecon products have been used by a wide spectrum of applications including mining in extreme cold environments, district heating systems, and central cooling systems where pipes can be laid either above or below ground. “Compared to the conventional field applied approach, Urecon provides a factory insulated solution – where controlled conditions foster better overall quality”, explains Carl Vreugde about Urecon's approach to piping insulation. “We focus on three basic areas. Firstly, extreme cold weather conditions where we are protecting against freezing to ensure that whatever is inside the pipe doesn't become an ice cube. Secondly is district heating where we move warm water through a network of pipes from a central location. Third, we provide insulated cooling to prevent what is inside the pipe from gaining heat. This is common in warm climates such as Latin America and the Caribbean where cold water is used for air conditioning on large resorts.”
“COMPARED TO THE CONVENTIONAL FIELD APPLIED APPROACH, URECON PROVIDES A FACTORY INSULATED SOLUTION – WHERE CONTROLLED CONDITIONS FOSTER BETTER OVERALL QUALITY.”
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EXCELLING IN EXTREME CONDITIONS The outstanding function of Urecon's insulation is that it enables pipes to be used above ground even in harsh environments. This has been particularly useful for the mining industry in Canada's Arctic and northern regions, where blasting into the ground to lay pipework is costly and physically difficult. Urecon's sales engi-
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neers consult and advise directly with the mining company to optimize a system that will work best. A high-density polyethylene (HDPE) material is often favoured for its resilience and flexibility. These pre-insulated pipe systems are often electrically heat traced to ensure proper protection against freezing. Leak detection is available too, which helps to mitigate environmental damage.
THE OUTSTANDING FUNCTION OF URECON’S INSULATION IS THAT IT ENABLES PIPES TO BE USED ABOVE GROUND EVEN IN HARSH ENVIRONMENTS.
Where Urecon's approach really excels in terms of sustainability is thermal energy saved. Two inches urethane insulation (standard thickness) can prolong time before freezing temperature by several weeks even in a no-flow situation – depending on pipe size and ambient temperatures. Being an all-in-one solution means Urecon's systems can be delivered, ready-to-install, during the brief windows in Arctic weather that allow either ice roads during winter or barges during summer to access the remote north. This
saves fuel, resources, and labour by shipping the system as one unit rather than in parts to be assembled on site. It's not only remote mining sites in the north that benefit from Urecon's products however. First Nation communities have used Urecon's pre-insulated piping for their water supplies in order to ensure they can obtain year-round drinking water. These communities have also made use of another area of the company’s expertise: District heating.
BENEFITING THE COMMUNITY “A good example would be a northern community with a saw mill, producing waste that isn’t being used,” explains Mr. Vreugde. ”Biomass is a perfect example because the community basically turns waste into fuel for creating hot water that then can be moved around the village or town using our pre-insulated piping systems. It’s a turnkey solution for efficiency.” An example of this is with the Cree Nation community of Ouje-Bougoumou, located SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS MAGAZINE
SUSTAINABILITY IS WOVEN INTO THE FABRIC OF URECON’S DESIGNS, PROVIDING NOT ONLY ENVIRONMENTAL BENEFITS BUT EFFICIENCY AND ECONOMIC ADVANTAGES TOO.
in Northern Quebec. Two biomass-fired boilers utilising waste from the local sawmill were installed alongside two fuel-oil fired boilers in 1993. These heated water to 90 Celsius, 75% of the work undertaken by the biomass boilers. The water was then distributed amongst 135 homes and 16 public buildings via thin wall steel pipes and plastic pipes (PEX). INNOVATING TECHNOLOGY Sustainability is woven into the fabric of Urecon’s designs, providing not only environmental benefits but efficiency and eco14 | SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS MAGAZINE
nomic advantages too. “Urecon promotes a product called the Logstor TwinPipe, for example,” says Mr. Vreugde. “It combines supply and return pipes within a single insulated bundle. Diffusion barriers are used to maintain high performance of the insulation throughout the system’s life cycle.” The efficient LOGSTOR TwinPipe is used in district heating systems to reduce CO2 emissions and operating costs by up to 50%. Mr. Vreugde goes on to outline one of Urecon’s most recent innovations. “Most recently we have been really proud to be involved with steam-to-hot-water conver-
sions in a number of universities including the University of British Columbia in Vancouver and Stanford University in California, USA. These universities have a mandate to reduce carbon emissions, to become more sustainable and green. What we have done is convert their old steam distribution systems into modern hot water piping that allow freedom of feedstock fuels including natural gas, biomass, solar or a combination of them all. It is a way of not being locked into any particular type of fuel.” At Stanford University, where the conversion project began in 2013 and is
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URECON HAS A CLEAR PLAN FOR CONTINUING TO OFFER IMPROVED SUSTAINABILITY AND QUALITY OVER THE COMING YEARS.
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expected to be completed in 2015, the distribution will be put through more than 20 miles of Logstor thin-walled steel pipe jacketed with HDPE. Diameters range from 2 inches to 24 inches. A leak detection system will also be fitted into the network. There will be an expected 70% increase in efficiency over the university’s previous water heating system as well as a 50% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions compared to 1990 levels. FLEXIBLE FUTURE Urecon has a clear plan for continuing to offer improved sustainability and quality over the coming years. “We are looking at ways we can produce and supply physically flexible pre-insulated piping that are
non-corrosive,” states Mr. Vreugde. “We want to achieve that with higher operating temperatures, higher pressure limitations, and larger pipe sizes. Currently we promote a plastic product called PEX-Flex that will handle up to 200 Fahrenheit up to 4 inches in diameter.” “Flexible piping is hugely advantageous because rather than having to spend a lot of time digging and laying expensive steel pipes, it simply rolls out and is hooked up at either end. This provides savings not only for remote locations but for busy urban centres as well, where disruption to traffic and city life can be kept to a minimum. There are efforts underway to create a product that can go larger than 4 inches and take significantly higher temperatures. Beyond
our traditional market applications, the new technical boundaries will be appealing to the industrial oil and gas sector.” No doubt this will be yet another challenge that Urecon embraces. c www.urecon.com / www.pexflex.net
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RENEWABLE ENERGY FOR CANADA AND BEYOND
Sustainable Business Magazine speaks to Marie-JosĂŠe Privyk, Director, Communications and Sustainable Development at Innergex Renewable Energy Inc., about how they are promoting and delivering sustainable energy.
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THE TIPELLA CREEK RUN-OF-RIVER HYDROELECTRIC FACILITY, LOCATED IN BRITISH COLUMBIA, HAS AN INSTALLED CAPACITY OF 18 MW. THE TIPELLA CREEK PLANT HAS RECEIVED AN ECOLOGO CERTIFICATION, FOR ITS REDUCED IMPACT ON THE ENVIRONMENT. INNERGEX HAS 14 ECOLOGO CERTIFIED FACILITIES ACROSS CANADA.
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INNERGEX THE 25 MW VIGER-DENONVILLE WIND FARM, LOCATED IN QUÉBEC, WAS DEVELOPED BY INNERGEX IN A 50-50 JOINT VENTURE WITH THE RIVIÈRE-DU-LOUP REGIONAL COUNTY MUNICIPALITY.
OVER TWO AND A HALF DECADES THEY HAVE BUILT A PORTFOLIO OF 33 ASSETS: 26 RUN-OF-RIVER HYDRO FACILITIES, SIX WIND FARMS, AND ONE SOLAR FARM.
Innergex Renewable Energy specialize in sustainable power and this year they are celebrating their 25th anniversary. Over two and a half decades they have built a portfolio of 33 assets: 26 run-of-river hydro facilities, six wind farms, and one solar farm. At present the organization is developing five more assets to grow its offering to the
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provinces of Quebec, Ontario, and British Columbia in Canada. Director, Communications and Sustainable Development Marie-Josée Privyk talks to Sustainable Business Magazine about the company's new assets, strength of their existing stock, commitment to social relations, and hopes for expansion into international markets.
MAKING NEW THE OLD In the early 1990s, Innergex were one of the first companies to take up old run-ofriver hydro facilities and bring them back into full usage. "In the early 1990s, small private producers in Quebec were offered contracts to redevelop the small hydro infrastructure,” explains Ms. Privyk. “Then we expanded to other parts of Canada over the next few years. In the early 2000s the Government of Quebec decided to create a wind energy industry and launched a request for proposals of 1000 megawatts, for which Innergex won several contracts. Later, in 2011, we acquired a solar project in Ontario shortly after construction began and brought that online in 2012." At present there is an installed capacity of 1200 megawatts within Innergex's portfolio but their five new projects will raise this total to approximately 1500 megawatts. Four of these projects are run-of-river hydro facilities located in British Columbia and one is a wind farm located in Quebec,
INAUGURATION CEREMONY AT THE UMBATA FALLS RUN-OF-RIVER HYDROELECTRIC FACILITY, IN ONTARIO. THE 23 MW FACILITY WAS DEVELOPED BY INNERGEX IN A 49-51 JOINT VENTURE WITH THE OJIBWAYS OF THE PIC RIVER FIRST NATION. WORK OPPORTUNITIES WERE OFFERED TO THE FIRST NATION COMMUNITY DURING THE CONSTRUCTION PHASE AND TWO ABORIGINAL OPERATORS WERE HIRED FOR THE FACILITY.
cementing the foothold the company has in its existing markets without compromising the long-term sustainability model it has maintained since its small beginnings. Despite a formidable rate of growth, an intuitive sense of community that sees the company working with its neighborhoods and sharing the benefits of its business has been one of Innergex's proudest achievements. COMMUNITY ACTION Close community relationships have proved to be the bedrock of Innergex's 25 year success and the in-development run-of-river
hydro projects are ideal examples of this. "Over the years we have developed a business model based on social acceptability of our projects," says Ms. Privyk. "With many local communities, whether municipal or First Nations, we have agreements through which our socioeconomic benefits are shared by the local people. These agreements can take many forms but the ultimate sign of acceptability is when a local community becomes a partner in our project." As people familiar with their local environment, community participation has provided a great deal of aid to Innergex
THE 300-ACRE STARDALE SOLAR FARM, LOCATED IN ONTARIO, HAS A TOTAL INSTALLED CAPACITY OF 33.2 MWDC
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EVERY PROJECT IS DEVELOPED WITH THE INTENTION OF REMAINING OPERATIONAL FOR 40 TO 50 YEARS AT LEAST.
during their project development phase. During the environmental assessment process stage the company consults with locals via public meetings or community representatives to understand the potential environmental and social impacts that a new facility or farm might have. From protecting species habitats to respecting areas
of archaeological importance, the environmental assessment process is carried out in conjunction with the appropriate regulatory authorities to work out a plan of restoration or compensation before a project receives its permitting. In this way, the 33 existing facilities have proved resilient and welcomed features.
MORE EQUAL THAN OTHERS On the question of key differences between hydro, wind, and solar assets Ms. Privyk is quick to highlight that each has its own pros and cons and each must be judged on its own merits. Run-of-river hydro facilities, for example, outshine wind and solar with their 50 to 100 year life expectancy compared
building the best since 1973
Jim Dent Construction is an industry leader in heavy civil construction, specializing in hydro-related projects for a variety of public and private clients. DENT services include site preparation, right-of-way clearing, transmission line foundations, substations, installation of new generating systems and run-of-river sites.
Jim Dent Construction - 62575 Airport Road, Hope, BC, Canada, V0X 1L2 • Phone: 604-869-5582 Fax: 604-869-2639 • Sandy Dent: 604-869-6181 • www.jimdentconstruction.com
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THE PORTNEUF FACILITIES CONSIST OF THREE RUN-OFRIVER HYDROELECTRIC POWER GENERATING STATIONS WITH A TOTAL INSTALLED CAPACITY OF 25.9 MW. THE 24 MW CHAUDIÈRE RUN-OF-RIVER HYDROELECTRIC FACILITY LOCATED IN THE PARC DES CHUTES-DE-LA-CHAUDIÈRE, NEAR THE TOWN OF LÉVIS, IN QUÉBEC. DURING THE REFURBISHMENT OF THE FACILITY, INNERGEX CHOSE TO APPROACH THE LOCAL COMMUNITIES THAT WOULD BE DIRECTLY CONCERNED BY THE PROJECT. IN ORDER TO PRESERVE THE BEAUTIFUL FALLS, ESPECIALLY DURING THE SUMMER MONTHS WHEN TOURISM IS AT ITS PEAK, THE PROJECT WAS STRUCTURED AROUND AESTHETIC FLOW REQUIREMENTS. INNERGEX IS ALSO COMMITTED TO THE REVITALIZATION AND ANNUAL MAINTENANCE OF THE SURROUNDING PUBLIC NATURE PARK, A MAJOR TOURIST ATTRACTION FOR THE REGION.
with 20 to 25 years for wind turbines and solar panels. This makes them particularly appealing for a company like Innergex that has its sights set on projects with long-term sustainability. The construction of a new run-of-river hydro facility, however, is limited to maximum capacities of approximately 50 megawatts whereas easily deployed wind turbines can easily create farms of 300 megawatts or more. Solar panels are becoming more and more cost effective and are easily installed, but their large physical footprint requires large tracts of land to achieve significant capacities. Nonetheless renewably resourced energy remains the cleanest, most environmentally friendly means of generating power at present. This is recognized by many First Nations that have welcomed many of Innergex's projects, compared with other types of infrastructure projects. Through the very act of making conscientious decisions regarding the energy sources it chooses to produce electricity, Innergex embodies the sustainability ethics
THE ASHLU CREEK COMPENSATION AREA IS BY FAR INNERGEX’S LARGEST, SPANNING ALMOST 53,000 M2, WITH MANY POOLS AND INTERCONNECTED CHANNELS THAT ARE EQUIVALENT IN TOTAL AREA TO THAT OF 10 FOOTBALL FIELDS.
its business is based on. "Fundamentally, that is the way to create assets that will last a long time," explains Ms. Privyk. "Every project is developed with the intention of remaining operational for 40 to 50 years at least and this is part of the reason we gain such widespread acceptance from local communities. We also promote environmental responsibility to our stakeholders through our annual reports, and we also expect to publish our first sustainable development report later this year."
YOUNG SALMON IN THE HABITAT OF THE 49.9 MW ASHLU CREEK HYDROELECTRIC FACILITY, LOCATED IN BRITISH COLUMBIA. INNERGEX HAS BUILT A NUMBER OF FISH HABITAT AREAS IN BRITISH COLUMBIA.
and will to invest in all three of our sectors. Mexico in particular is a country where the demand for electricity is rapidly growing whilst they are also looking to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. We believe our business model is very sound and as the years proceed, we look forward to leveraging our experience internationally. c
LOOKING BEYOND THE BORDERS There are many exciting prospects for Innergex over the coming years but the most prominent is its desire to expand beyond Canada. "We have reached critical mass in Canada and have reached a size and level of expertise which allow us to turn our attention to other markets,” explains Ms. Privyk. “Most appealing to us are Western Europe, where the wind sector presents strong opportunities, and Latin America, which benefits from having the environment SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS MAGAZINE
WATERLOO INSTITUTE FOR SUSTAINABLE ENERGY
ENERGY RESEARCH Sustainable Business Magazine talks to Mr. Zhewen Chen, Manager of Program Development and Partnerships at the Waterloo Institute for Sustainable Energy (WISE), about their renewable energy initiatives. Written by George Harris. The Waterloo Institute for Sustainable Energy (WISE), which was founded as recently as 2008 by Executive Director Professor Jatin Nathwani, Ontario Research Chair in Public Policy for Sustainable Energy, is the focal point for energy studies at the University of Waterloo. By no means the largest establishment of its kind, WISE may 24 | SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS MAGAZINE
well be one of the most ambitious. "The kind of research we’re looking at is really the notion of affordable energy access for humanity,” explains Mr. Zhewen Chen, the Manager of Program Development and Partnerships at WISE. “Our vision is simple: Clean energy, accessible energy, and affordable energy for all.”
Focusing its efforts on smart grid and microgrid technology, last year WISE was responsible for installing a supply of clean reliable energy to some of Canada's most remote regions, such as the Kasabonika Lake community. "In Canada approximately 200,000 people live in about 300 communities across the country in remote areas,”
KASABONIKA LAKE PROJECT WIND TURBINES.
explains Mr. Chen. “They’re classified by the Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada (AANDC) as off-grid communities since they are not connected to the North American electric grid. They rely on diesel-based generation, which is not very clean, especially when you take into account having to transport diesel into those communities by truck or plane.” Many of these communities belong to Canada’s First Nations and live in the more remote northern regions of Canada. The solution WISE implemented for the Kasabonika Lake community, in a successful partnership with engineering firm Hatch, the utilities company Hydro One, and Wenvor Technologies, involved installSUSTAINABLE BUSINESS MAGAZINE
WATERLOO INSTITUTE FOR SUSTAINABLE ENERGY KASABONIKA LAKE PROJECT DIESEL TANKS.
ing data-logging equipment on existing microgrid system serving the nearby First Nation communities and installing an additional 30 kW wind turbine. The entire project is regulated by a microgrid to understand the consumption profile and ensure optimal efficiency for the isolated communities. The
Kasabonika Lake community’s energy needs were met by airlifting more than 20 million liters of diesel annually. WISE intends to usher in a new era of energy transmission with its promising microgrid technology. “We are changing the industry’s mentality from a very
traditional framework to a new smart modular framework,” explains Mr. Chen proudly. “The traditional way to deliver energy to those communities would be to build transmission lines and infrastructure that costs huge amounts. A more modular designer approach would allow
KASABONIKA LAKE PROJECT AIRPORT.
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the incorporation of local generation resources into a microgrid system which gives people access to reliable and sustainable electricity.” A microgrid is a cluster of electricity-generating machinery that is usually connected to a centralized grid, or macrogrid. A principal benefit of a modular and localized system of electricity generation is its low infrastructure costs in comparison with the cost of constructing huge pylons. It is also much more efficient since less power is lost in transmission, and it is easy to integrate with clean energy generation. As well as delivering real benefits to small domestic communities, WISE also has global ambitions. “A lot of the microgrid research we do here is highly transferable
to other contexts,” says Mr. Chen. “Globally, we’re looking at 1.4 billion people today living on the planet without access to power and 2.5 billion without access to clean energy. By enabling them with the smallest amount of energy resources, say a solar panel coupled with a small battery, you’re not just giving them light, but a means for productivity and a healthier lifestyle because you’re replacing kerosene in the process.” RETURN ON INVESTMENT As a Canadian research institute, WISE can apply for funding from the Canadian government’s well developed infrastructure for supporting scientific research. While grants can be given to specific projects, the
STUDENT POSTER SESSION.
TONY WEIS PUBLIC LECTURE. THE ECOLOGICAL HOOFPRINT MEAT, ENERGY, AND SUSTAINABILITY’.
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WATERLOO INSTITUTE FOR SUSTAINABLE ENERGY
WISE IS LOOKING TO CHANGE THE ENERGY INDUSTRY FOREVER WITH ITS UPCOMING GLOBAL INITIATIVE.
MINISTER OF ENVIRONMENT VISITS SOLAR LAB 2013.
HVEL-HIGH VOLTAGE ENERGY LAB.
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majority of the government’s subvention comes from the Tri Council – a body made up of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC). WISE not only partners with these government agencies but it also receives substantial funding from private sector benefactors. In the last two years alone, WISE has entered into partnerships with over 12 private sector companies, including Toyota Tsusho,
Cisco Systems Canada, and Hydro One. “In working with private sector partners who are often our financial contributors on specific projects that align to their corporate needs, we create tremendous value,” explains Mr. Chen. “On average projects return five times the financial investment that the industry contributed.” THE STRENGTH OF COLLABORATION One thing WISE particularly prides itself on is the level of collaboration that characterizes many of its projects. “Collaboration is essen-
GIGA TO NANO ELECTRONICS CENTRE.
capacity, taking advantage of the geological structure of Southern Ontario to store excess renewable energy in salt caverns, into the transmission and distribution energy grid. If it succeeds, this project has the potential to drastically change energy storage development within Ontario. Collaboration is also the tool WISE is using to champion its proposal of affordable global energy. WISE intends to unveil a Global Change Initiative next year and has entered into a partnership with the highly respected Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) in Germany, focusing on the vision of affordable energy for humanity. The Karlsruhe Institute of Technology is famous for encouraging research into energy technologies, notably energy storage and microgrids.
CULTIVATING LEADERS WISE is looking to change the energy industry forever with its upcoming global initiative, in conjunction with its ambitious plans to research and develop geothermal energy, a sorely underdeveloped energy resource. Despite this global outlook, WISE remains firmly focused on their own students. “What we are cultivating are highly qualified individuals,” says Mr. Chen. “Graduate students, undergraduate students, PhD students, and post-docs all work very closely with their supervisors and alongside industry in these programs. We’re cultivating a group of qualified professionals and talents, who will become future leaders in the energy industry. Ultimately this is the main way WISE is making a difference in the energy industry.” c FUELCELL AND GREEN ENERGY LAB.
tial at WISE,” says Mr. Chen. “By collaboration I don’t just mean a professor working with another professor, I mean a project that’s cross-departmental or cross-disciplinary beyond the faculty level. Projects often even include multi-university stakeholders as well as utility and energy partners.” One such project is tackling the challenge of designing viable energy storage to make renewable energy more feasible. Combining research from 5 different departments, from computer engineering to environmental studies, WISE is seeking to integrate storage SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS MAGAZINE
Q&A MITCH JACKSON
Vice President of Environmental Affairs and Sustainability, FedEx Corporation. 30 | SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS MAGAZINE
Can you tell us about your Global Citizenship strategy? What does Sustainability mean to FedEx? FedEx connects people and possibilities around the world. With regard to sustainability, we strive to connect the world responsibly and resourcefully. Our philosophy for doing so is what I call Practical Sustainability - transformational and strategic stewardship that adds value to the organization’s efforts to act more responsibly. The strategic building blocks we use are performance, transparency, innovation, and leadership. Performance is about execution of our objectives and goals. Transparency is communicating on how we are doing in this regard through reports, blogs, and more. Innovation is finding new, cleaner, better ways to serve our customers through differing operations and new services. Leadership is about finding policy-driven approaches to change what’s possible for business and society at large. It all adds up to EarthSmart® - our commitment to minimize our impact on the environment by integrating innovative sustainable practices into the way we work and the services we offer our customers. How are you working to decrease your environmental footprint? We are working on a myriad of different initiatives to do this, however the easiest way to discuss it is via our goals in this space: • Reduce aircraft emissions intensity 30% from a 2005 baseline by 2020: In 2014, aircraft CO2 emissions intensity was reduced by 1.5%, bringing total reduction in CO2 emissions intensity to 21.4% from 2005 levels. • Obtain 30% of jet fuel from alternative fuels by 2030: Developing a sustainable jet fuel product that can be produced at scale and transported to where it’s needed at a competitive price is a challenge we continue to address. We are actively engaged with government, industry, and environmental organizations in developing viable sustainable alternatives to jet fuel. • Increase FedEx Express vehicle fuel efficiency 30% from a 2005 baseline by 2020: In 2014, fuel efficiency was improved by 2.5%, bringing our cumulative improvement from 2005 levels to 29.5%, just shy of our goal. • Seek LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification on all new U.S. FedEx Express buildings: 10 FedEx Express buildings are LEED-certified, and six more are being reviewed for certification. In addition, two FedEx Ground facilities achieved LEED certification in 2014. • Expand on-site generation and continue to procure renewable energy for facilities: Two new facilities opened in 2014 and include on-site solar energy generation. Together, our 11 solar facilities produced more than 8 million kWh of electricity in 2014. In addition, to give some sense of the breadth and scope of just one of the programs FedEx has underway, I’ll focus on FedEx® Fuel Sense. This initiative comprises of 12 departments who are seeking efficiencies across our aviation operations - our largest source of environmental impact. This initiative has 46 active programs, and saved almost 72 million gallons of fuel in 2014, equal to nearly 700,000 metric tons of CO2 avoided.
How is FedEx supporting economic development? The developed world takes its sophisticated infrastructure for granted. However, it’s a vital and important mechanism for creating global wealth and wellbeing for its citizens. The same potential is true for the developing world, moving possibilities for millions of people there. By linking over 90 percent of the world’s GDP with an efficient and dependable logistics network, FedEx is helping to facilitate the growth of global entrepreneurship through trade. You can find examples of this in the Economic Development section of our 2014 FedEx Global Citizenship Report. How are you working with local communities? FedEx works to align its work with local communities in a way that connects our business priorities with social needs. That takes the form of (1) Disaster readiness, relief and recovery; (2) Pedestrian and road safety; and, (3) Sustainability. Our disaster readiness program resulted in efforts to combat the Ebola outbreak ravaging West Africa, as well as relief to the Philippines after Typhoon Haiyan. All in all, we shipped 6.7 million pounds of charitable shipping in 2014. Our pedestrian and road safety program has allowed us to reach over 10 million students with messages on pedestrian safety in 10 countries in collaboration with Safe Kids Worldwide and our sustainability efforts in concert with EMBARQ, a part of the World Resources Institute, have brought sustainable transportation solutions to Mexico, India, and Brazil, providing best practices in 40 cities there. How are you encouraging innovation? I often say that innovation can be defined as applied inspiration. It is also a core feature of our founding since FedEx essentially created the express industry. With respect to sustainability, FedEx does so primarily through our EarthSmart Innovations program. It intends to inspire products, services, physical assets, and initiatives that go beyond their obvious impact. It seeks to set new standards for stewardship in our industry and deliver clear and tangible benefits for the environment, our customers, our team members, and our business. Some examples include the following: FedEx Solar Facilities, Paperless Processing, Zero-emission All-electric Vehicles, Low-emission Hybrid-electric Vehicles, LEED-certified facilities, Carbon-neutral Envelope Shipping, Paper Recycling Program, and Fuel Sense, which I mentioned above. How are you investing in a more sustainable future? As we say in our 2014 FedEx Global Citizenship Report, with a global vision and prominent presence on six continents, FedEx links over 90 percent of the global GDP, providing efficient trade channels to billions of people. These connections contribute to global social and economic progress. Clearly, there are environmental impacts that result from this progress, but only seeking to address adverse or negative impacts without contributing to social progress and benefit would be simply focusing on risks without capitalizing on opportunities. Think of it this way, using facilities as an example: Should an organization focus on energy efficiency efforts alone, or in combination with new, cleaner sources of energy like wind and solar? Again, as we say, corporate citizenship is often focused on how a company operates, but the social and economic consequences of what a company does are even more important. For us, that means that FedEx is built on the belief that local economic growth requires connectivity with the rest of the world, and we accept that it is our role and responsibility to do this sustainably. c SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS MAGAZINE
AASHE SFSU - CHANT LEADER MICHAEL ZAMBRANO GETS READY TO KICK THINGS OFF.
RAIN GARDENS AROUND THE UNIVERSITY OF DAYTON CAMPUS ARE DESIGNED TO COLLECT, RETAIN AND SLOWER ABSORB WATER RUNOFF FROM SURROUNDING SURFACES OR ACT AS A NATURAL FILTER SO WATER IS CLEAN BY THE TIME IT ENTERS A STORM SEWER.
SAN FRANCISCO STATE UNIVERSITY TO END COAL INVESTMENTS: THE SFSU FOUNDATION HAS AGREED TO NOT INVEST IN COMPANIES “WITH SIGNIFICANT PRODUCTION OR USE OF COAL AND TAR SANDS.” THE FOUNDATION WILL ALSO SEEK TO LIMIT INVESTMENTS IN FOSSIL FUEL COMPANIES.
CAMPUSES A foreword by Meghan Fay Zahniser, AASHE Executive Director
MEGHAN FAY ZAHNISER, AASHE EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR.
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The Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE) supports and encourages the advancement of sustainability at higher education institutions through programs such as the Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System (STARS), professional development offerings, and an annual conference & expo. STARS is a transparent, self-reporting framework for colleges and universities to measure their sustainability performance. This comprehensive assessment tool helps institutions understand exactly how they are performing, as well as identifying areas for improvement related to sustainability in academics, operations, and administrative efforts on campus. With more than 650 institutions registered for STARS, it has transformed the way campuses track and monitor their sustainability progress. We have institu-
tions that participate in STARS annually and are able to see their improvements through an increased score. Institutions, both national and international, work toward a Bronze, Silver, Gold, or Platinum rating, or they may opt to be recognized as a STARS Reporter where they only report data without receiving a rating. In addition, given that transparency is critical to sustainability reporting, all STARS data is made available to the public which easily enables our members to share information and best practices. Professional development opportunities also boost sustainability efforts and are one of the top member offerings and benefits. Members can access webinars for free and receive discounts for workshops, STARS, and conference registrations. Members also have access to the Resource Center. The online Resource Center is a comprehensive
DELTA COLLEGE LIVING WALL.
source of information on sustainability in higher education. It provides administrators, faculty, operations staff, students, and other campus stakeholders with the tools, information, and guidance they need to lead a sustainability transformation on their campus. We are also looking forward to welcoming AASHE members and others in the campus sustainability community to the AASHE 2015 Conference & Expo, themed Transforming Sustainability Education, in Minneapolis, Minnesota, on Oct. 25-28. The annual conference allows everyone the opportunity to share and exchange ideas on the expansion of
sustainability efforts, as well as providing a platform for feedback. Attendees also have an opportunity to hear from internationally recognized sustainability leaders such as last year’s featured keynote speaker Annie Leonard, Greenpeace Executive Director and creator of “The Story of Stuff Project”. Founded in 2005, AASHE celebrates its tenth year throughout 2015, and remains committed to inspiring and catalyzing higher education to lead the global sustainability transformation through the aforementioned efforts and many other exciting celebratory initiatives planned throughout the year. See the AASHE website for information on these
initiatives including live tweet sessions and a video campaign kicking off at the conference in Minneapolis! I’m excited to build on past successes from my six years at AASHE. It is vital that we remain focused on providing support and additional resources to empower higher education institutions to be the foundation for a thriving, equitable, and ecologically healthy world. Sustainable Business Magazine’s continued support highlighting sustainable campuses is pivotal to furthering the campus sustainability community and AASHE’s vision, and we are thrilled to continue the partnership, especially throughout this monumental year for AASHE. c VIRGINIA TECH.
UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS CHICAGO STUDENTS TEACH DIVERSITY WITH GARDENS.
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DR. MOHAMED ATTALLA.
EXCELLENCE Sustainable Business Magazine talks to Dr. Mohamed Attalla, Assistant Vice President and Chief Facilities Officer at McMaster University, about McMasterâ€™s sustainability programs. Written by George Harris. 34 | SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS MAGAZINE
with a minimum Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Silver Certification. “In the design process, when we engage consultants, from the outset we inform them what type of building we are interested in and part of our specs are that it has to be a LEED-certified building,” explains Dr. Mohamed Attalla, Assistant Vice President and Chief Facilities Officer. “We also have our own design standards for certain components, and we recommend that these components be used in the building.” Since the policy’s induction in 2005, McMaster has built 12 buildings that meet at least LEED Silver certification. Five of these actually meet the Gold standard or higher, including an addition to their
much celebrated Nuclear Research Building, in addition to the CANMET building, which has a LEED Platinum designation. The Sustainability Division of Facilities Services at McMaster University has implemented a campus bike share system, involving 6 bike stations and 60 bikes, which provides an active transportation option for the campus community and is one of many joint efforts between McMaster and the City of Hamilton.” The campus is also well served by all major transit operators, the provincial carpooling service, and Community CarShare, the city’s non-profit car-sharing co-operative. McMaster University was named a Smart Commute Workplace for 2014. WASTE RECYCLING AND COMPOSTING OPTIONS.
REFILLABLE WATER BOTTLE STATIONS.
Since its inauguration in 1887, McMaster University has moved, jumping from Toronto to Hamilton in 1930. Ranked 2nd in Ontario and 66th globally in UI’s GreenMetric World University Ranking (2014), and with 30,000 students and 7,500 staff, McMaster is one of the leaders in environmental sustainability in higher education in Ontario. The Energy Management and Sustainability Division of Facilities Services at McMaster leads the university’s sustainability efforts. One of its most effective strategies has been the Sustainable Building Policy. Put into practice in 2005, which only allows a new building or major renovation to be constructed on campus if it complies SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS MAGAZINE
THE OFFICE OF SUSTAINABILITY PROMOTES COURSES WHICH EXPLORE DIFFERENT FACETS OF SUSTAINABILITY FROM A HOLISTIC, INTER-DISCIPLINARY PERSPECTIVE.
In addition to sustainable transportation, McMaster has implemented waste diversion measures to separate recyclables and compostable waste at the source. The program is tracked and the diversion rate information is made available to the community to promote ongoing improvement and education. Since 2009, biannual IT collection events have aimed to collect, reuse, and recycle electronic waste. The university’s efforts have successfully diverted a significant amount of landfill waste. ENERGY MANAGEMENT McMaster University is consistently ranked amongst the most research intensive universities in Canada, particularly in health research and engineering sciences. Science research is highly energy intensive due to the high conditioned air flows required in labs for safety purposes as well as data centers. With more than 80% of the campus carbon emissions attributed to the campus energy consumption, Dr. Mohamed Attalla - the executive in charge of McMaster’s Facility Services, Energy Management and Sustainability Division - led the development of the $22 million capital budget five year Energy Management Plan (EMP) (2013-2018). The Energy Management Plan has been designed 36 | SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS MAGAZINE
to take environmental, social, and economic factors into account and is enforced through rigorous metering and monitoring. Dr. Attalla explains how the McMaster Facility Services Energy Management and Sustainability Division is promoting sustainable initiatives and overseeing the execution of the university’s Energy Management Plan. “The Facility Services Energy Management and Sustainability Division champions sustainability not only in new buildings but in any
other initiatives that are related to greening and reducing any environmental impact of activity on campus. The Energy Management plan is very ambitious and it aims to reduce our energy consumption by 20%. This would be accomplished through the completion of 18 initiatives, a lot of which concentrate on lighting, cogeneration plans, HVAC, and air handling. The provincial government energy body in Ontario, the Ontario Power Authority (OPA), supports certain initiatives
ENERGY RECOVERY WHEEL.
by contributing and subsidizing the costs, so we are working with the OPA on the implementation of this plan. One of the projects is the lighting retrofit, which plans to change all the lighting on campus to LED lighting. We piloted a project at 3 or 4 different locations on campus, monitored the consumption, and looked at the potential energy conservation
and payback. The pilot project provided significant energy savings, so we decided to proceed with the rest of the campus. We are now in the process of having a complete audit of all the lights on campus and very soon we will tender contractors to implement the project.” Other significant projects include the implementation of advanced
demand control ventilation systems in labs along with less energy-consuming equipment, the implementation of a tri-generation heating, cooling, and power generation project to increase campus energy efficiency, and water conservation equipment on high water consumption life sciences research equipment. There has also been a particular
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MCMASTER UNIVERSITY JOE EMBERSON, DIRECTOR, ENERGY MANAGEMENT AND SUSTAINABILITY.
LED LIGHTING OUTDOORS.
SHAHID NAEEM, ENERGY MANAGEMENT AND SUSTAINABILITY ENGINEER.
focus on retro-commissioning older facilities, particularly science facilities. A pioneering electric grid balancing system also provides support to the provincial grid by managing system demand and utilizing McMaster’s cooling plant. The Energy Management Plan builds on efforts McMaster has made over the last decade. Between 2003-2005 the university completed an energy savings performance contract to green McMaster’s older buildings and infrastructure. This initiative is estimated to have saved $1.5 million annually, in addition to reducing CO2 emissions by 11,252 tons in 2005, which is the equivalent of taking over 1300 cars off the road. CAMPUS PARTICIPATION McMaster’s sustainability agenda stands out in large part because of McMaster’s ability
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to engage students in its programs and initiatives. The Campus Energy Dashboard and Benchmarking system provides real time energy updates to the campus via digital displays in high traffic buildings. Different buildings also compete for the lowest energy consumption, which directly engages the staff and students, who respond with enthusiasm. This culture of energy conservation is also reflected in academic work being done at McMaster. “Whether it’s a master’s thesis, or a PhD thesis, or even an undergraduate project, our staff work very closely with students and researchers to provide data, ideas, our current energy savings, our meter readings, and our current consumption for each building at different times and in different areas,” explains Dr. Attalla. “It is through this partnership that the researchers, whether undergraduate or graduate,
create a collaborative environment and create a vehicle for encouragement and collaboration.” In addition, the McMaster Facility Services Energy Management and Sustainability Division hires high performing students in various sustainability areas. Additional student engagement is achieved through an on-campus community and teaching garden, as well as annual events such as Bike to Work days and the annual Campus Sustainability Day, which promote sustainable behaviors and highlight the advantages of an active lifestyle. ACADEMIC SUSTAINABILITY Currently ranked 4th among universities in Canada according to the Times Higher Education World University Rankings, McMaster takes its academic reputation very seriously. It is no surprise that it provides a variety of courses that touch upon sustainability, marrying its strong scholastic standing with its ethic of addressing environmental issues. The Academic Sustainability Programs Office promotes courses which explore different facets of sustainability from a holistic, inter-disciplinary perspective. These courses are open to any student regardless of the faculty they come from. The Interdisciplinary Minor in Sustainability, for example, takes a range of modules from various faculties in order to create a broader and more comprehensive understanding of sustainability. This type of degree presents students with a wealth of courses options, thereby allowing them to tailor their degree to their specific interests while at the same time fostering another fundamental aspect of the McMaster brand of education: Involvement in the community. By fostering the interaction of students from diverse disciplinary backgrounds through this minor, McMaster stimulates innovative and multi-faceted solutions to sustainability problems. This approach is present in
THE GROUNDWORK HAS BEEN LAID FOR MCMASTER TO LEAD SUSTAINABILITY INNOVATION FOR YEARS TO COME.
many other programs and initiatives that the university offers, but particularly in its Sustainability Internship Program, which groups undergraduates with faculty and staff to tackle real-world problems and the Graduate/Undergraduate Collaboration in Experiential Learning (GUCEL) Program. The GUCEL program brings together graduate and undergraduate students
to collaborate on an interdisciplinary project and has been the driving force behind many of McMaster’s student-led initiatives, such as the hugely successful Engage with Waste campaign. A SUSTAINABLE FUTURE “What we’re looking forward to is implementing our Energy Management Plan, as
well as successfully working with the staff, the community, the students and collaborating with the Ontario Power Authority,” says Dr. Attalla. With support from the Ontario Power Authority, combined with the continued drive of its faculty, staff, and students, the groundwork has been laid for McMaster to lead sustainability innovation for years to come. c
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MOHAWK COLLEGE LEARNING EXCHANGE LIVING WALL ( H-WING).
QUALITY, INNOVATION, AND
Alan Griffiths, Manager of the Sustainability Office at Mohawk College, tells Sustainable Business Magazine about how they are embedding the principles of social, financial, and environmental sustainability into all that they do. Mohawk College is continuously improving and enhancing the student experience at all of our campuses. Our line of business is education, and the values and qualities we teach live on outside of the classroom. Community, inclusivity, and a commitment to excellence are only a few of the values that guide our actions and decisions and define our culture. Three strategic priorities 40 | SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS MAGAZINE
shape all of our future ready programs and institutional accountability: Quality, Innovation, and Sustainability. SUSTAINABILITY: A PILLAR OF MOHAWKâ€™S STRATEGIC VISION Mohawkâ€™s vision is creating and supporting prosperous communities and transformed lives, where students are
engaging with the communities in which they learn, live, and serve. In the local and global economies, industries are continuing to focus their time, energy, and resources on achieving sustainability, requiring that employees have the knowledge and skill sets to apply sustainable practices in the organization. Academic programming at Mohawk College is
responsive to this demand, incorporating skills and knowledge that industry demands, including the principles and practices of sustainability. The Mohawk College Sustainability Office was formed in 2008 and continues to build awareness of sustainability on campus and throughout the region. The Sustainability Office is responsible for the introduction and implementation of programs, services, and education to engage students in a culture and lifestyle of sustainability. On top of regular outreach and promotions the Sustainability Office also coordinates with local sustainable organizations, supports region-wide active and alternative transportation initiatives, and helps connect students and staff with community partners. MOHAWK COLLEGE ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT PLAN Mohawk published the first Environmental Management Plan (EMP) in 2011. The EMP became the blueprint and leading policy document for achieving sustainability at the College, setting a target of 20% reduction of 2007 baseline emissions by 2020. Mohawk immediately took ambitious steps towards reducing the College’s environmental footprint in a short period of time. In 2013 Mohawk commissioned Stantec Consulting Inc. to complete a third party greenhouse gas inventory measuring 2012 emissions against the 2007 baseline emissions. The inventory found Mohawk had accomplished a 24% reduction in carbon emissions, eight
years ahead of schedule. Mohawk released an updated Environmental Management Plan (EMP2.0) in 2014, with a new reduction target of 30% by 2020. EMP2.0 reaffirms Mohawk’s commitment to sustainability and reducing the college’s environmental impact. The emphasis of the updated document is stakeholder engagement, behavior change, and developing the Sustainable leaders of tomorrow. This involves a greater focus on the impact of students, staff, and visitors on reduction targets and practices that support sustainability on and off campus. Continuing to foster a culture of sustainability, encouraging participation, and promoting sustainable principles gives students the knowledge and skills to become future leaders in sustainability and active members of their communities, on and off campus.
THE H-WING AT MOHAWK COLLEGE IS LEED® GOLD CERTIFIED, WHERE MATERIALS AND SYSTEMS HELP REDUCE THE BUILDING’S ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT.
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THE MOHAWK COLLEGE SUSTAINABILITY OFFICE WAS FORMED IN 2008 AND CONTINUES TO BUILD AWARENESS OF SUSTAINABILITY ON CAMPUS AND THROUGHOUT THE REGION.
THE DAVID BRALEY ATHLETICS AND RECREATION CENTRE, LEED GOLD CANDIDATE, SOLAR HOT WATER SYSTEM AND ROOF TOP FEATURES FOR MINIMIZING HEAT ISLAND EFFECTS (WHITE ROOFING MATERIAL).
THE LEARNING EXCHANGE ROOF TOP DOUBLES AS A GATHERING PLACE AND GARDEN.
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INSIDE THE LEARNING EXCHANGE LIVING WALL.
THE LEARNING EXCHANGE, LEED GOLD CERTIFIED.
LEED ® DEVELOPMENT AND SUSTAINABLE CAMPUSES Mohawk College recognizes the interconnection between economy, society, and the environment in creating a high quality of life and is committed to creating sustainable campuses with high quality interior and exterior spaces that foster academic excellence and form a strong sense of community. Mohawk College has constructed two buildings to LEED® standards: The Learning Exchange, Gold Certified, and the new David Braley Athletic and Recreation Centre (DBARC),
Gold Candidate. The Sustainability Office has designed two self-guided LEED® tours in the Learning Exchange and DBARC to highlight the sustainable features of both buildings. In 2013, Mohawk converted an underutilized gymnasium into a two-storey facility that now houses the School of Justice and Wellness programming. The adaptive re-use occurred exclusively within the footprint of the existing building to create more classrooms, new lab space, and facilitate the move of programming from Brantford Campus to a centralized location.
THE MOHAWK STUDENTS’ ASSOCIATION PLAZA WAS DESIGNED WITH THE ENVIRONMENT IN MIND – PERMEABLE PAVING, LOW-MAINTENANCE PLANT SPECIES AND RECYCLED GLASS PAVING ARE JUST SOME OF THE SUSTAINABLE FEATURES.
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“THREE STRATEGIC PRIORITIES SHAPE ALL OF OUR FUTURE READY PROGRAMS AND INSTITUTIONAL ACCOUNTABILITY: QUALITY, INNOVATION, AND SUSTAINABILITY.”
ACADEMIC PROGRAMMING IS RESPONSIVE TO INDUSTRY DEMAND FOR EMPLOYEES WELL-TRAINED IN THE PRINCIPLES AND PRACTICES OF SUSTAINABILITY.
STUDENT-FOCUSED SUSTAINABILITY; THE SUSTAINABLE INITIATIVES FUND The Sustainable Initiatives Fund (SIF) supports programs that provide Mohawk students with the skills and knowledge to actively engage in social and academic projects to encourage environmental sustainability. The SIF helps fund new on-campus projects and infrastructure, creates awareness of sustainable prin-
ciples and practices, and supports an enhanced learning and working environment. The SIF allows students to create innovative and practical solutions to real environmental challenges, positioning Mohawk and its students as leaders in sustainability among other top-rated post-secondary institutions. The SIF Committee was formed in 2014 between College staff and the Mohawk Students’
Association, and supports the promotion of sustainability and enhancing the student experience through collaborative and student-led campus initiatives. To date, the Sustainability Initiatives Fund has supported the following: • Diversity Garden – Designed and planted by members of the Sustainability Office and Social Inc (Centre for Social Inclusion)
MOHAWK COLLEGE CAMPUS FARM STAND, A PROJECT OF THE SUSTAINABILITY INITIATIVES FUND.
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ONE OF MANY CAMPUS BIKE PARKING LOCATIONS.
the Diversity Garden is a colourful flowerbed that celebrates Mohawk’s diverse campus community. • Green Orientation – New students attending Welcome Week activities are encouraged to participate in educational games, sign a pledge to reuse water bottles and get to know Sustainability Office programs. • Mohawk College Farm Stand – Through a partnership with the Mustard Seed Coop, the Farm Stand brings local, healthy food options to campus while supporting local farmers and sustainable food systems.
STUDENTS CONNECTING WITH SUSTAINABILITY OFFICE STAFF AT FALL ORIENTATION 2014.
• Fennell Orchard – The Fennell Campus Orchard is a celebration of the agricultural history of the region and is an opportunity to connect students and community members with local food production on campus. The Fennell Orchard has 21 native fruit trees, including apples and pears. • Community Garden – The Community Garden is a place for students and staff to grow food for personal consumption in 50 raised garden beds. This space has created ongoing learning opportunities and provides a hub for local food organizations across the city.
• Bounty Bag Program – In partnership with the Mustard Seed Co-op, the Bounty Bag makes purchasing local produce easy and convenient for students and staff. Mohawk’s commitment to conducting business in ways which positively impact people and the environment is also a commitment to embedding the principles of social, financial, and environmental sustainability into all that we do. Mohawk College is preparing the sustainable leaders of tomorrow by inspiring our students and grads to practice greater sustainability in their workplaces and communities. c
STUDENTS WORKING IN THE CAMPUS COMMUNITY GARDEN PHOTO CREDITED TO BARRY GRAY, BARRYGRAYPHOTOGRAPHY.COM
STUDENTS PLEDGING AT FALL ORIENTATION 2014 TO REDUCE WASTE AND USE CAMPUS WATER REFILL STATIONS ON CAMPUS.
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UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS AT AUSTIN
FOCUSED Sustainable Business Magazine talks to Jim Walker, Director of Sustainability at the University of Texas at Austin, about maximising efficiency and emphasising the use of renewable energy on campus. Written by Liam Pritchett.
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MODELLING CHANGE UT has such a large campus and so many people in attendance (currently over 50,000 students, plus another 20,000 people taking up faculty and staff roles) that when operational changes to improve sustainability are implemented, they often make an immediate and significant difference. Mr. Walker suggests that when an organization such as UT is so committed to structural improvements; thinking about sustainability
in terms of food and education as well as energy, it provokes change elsewhere too. “You’re really modelling the kind of change you want to see happen in the world,” a statement mirrored in the university motto: “What starts here changes the world.” RETROCOMMISSIONING While there is a great deal of new construction going on at UT, a large amount of the sustainability efforts are being directed
The University of Texas at Austin (UT) was founded in 1883 and remains one of the largest and most prestigious universities in America. Teaching a diverse array of subjects and disciplines, while particularly focusing on graduate programs and research, it is apparent that sustainability and energy efficiency are emphasised throughout all of the university’s academia, structure, and operations. The UT website declares that “students, faculty, and staff continue their persistent efforts to preserve and expand our presence in sustainability in the classroom, athletics and residential life, and across campus.” Jim Walker, Director of Sustainability at UT, explains that the university is dedicated to championing environmental issues and is constantly looking to improve in all areas. SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS MAGAZINE
UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS AT AUSTIN
UT IS COMMITTED TO STRUCTURAL IMPROVEMENTS; THINKING ABOUT SUSTAINABILITY IN TERMS OF FOOD AND EDUCATION AS WELL AS ENERGY.
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towards greening existing buildings on campus. Some of these buildings, such as the university’s power plant, were originally constructed as early as the 1930s, while the majority date back to the 1940s and ‘50s. These buildings are examined by the campus’ energy engineers who focus on ways the structure’s energy efficiency can be improved. They typically identify things such as failed steam traps, chilled water valves not working and balancing issues in the building, and if there is digital feedback- opportunities to schedule the HVAC systems during unoccupied times. Based on their findings they collaborate with additional
staff members to maintain the building, bring them to proper operational standards, and then optimize their performance. At the same time, another group of ‘Energy Stewards’ focus on educating students, faculty and staff about how buildings should be occupied to improve performance. For example, they’re explaining why buildings are heated in a specific manner, or at a specific temperature, as well as ways in which individuals can minimize waste. Mr. Walker explains that conservation and waste reduction in older buildings, as well as sustainable new construction, has made a significant difference. “Over the last fifteen years or so our utility department has focused on efficiency such that we’ve reduced our natural gas usage back to 1977 levels while adding about 9,000,000 square feet of building space.” Improving how an existing building’s equipment and systems function together is known as retrocommissioning. The process addresses issues that occurred during construction, or that have developed over time. Retrocommissioning improves a building’s operations and maintenance to enhance SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS MAGAZINE
UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS AT AUSTIN
overall building performance. “We focus a lot on how we supply energy and water efficiently to buildings,” says Mr. Walker. “We place a relentless emphasis on efficiency.” Mr. Walker explains that it is extremely important to ensure that new campus buildings are constructed in the right way. “When we build a new building we do it with long term performance in mind.” Aspects that must be taken into account include materials, energy efficiency, transportation, and recycling. UT’s on-campus power plant helps significantly by providing natural gas-based power that allows UT to be self-sufficient. “The power plant is internationally recognised for its efficiency.” UT’s commitment to sustainability has also been apparent in other areas. Adjust50 | SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS MAGAZINE
ments to their impressive irrigation system saved approximately 100,000,000 gallons of water last year, while 24% of their overall dining hall budget is now spent on locally sourced or sustainably processed food. In addition to this, all food waste is composted, including both front-of-house waste and waste from the kitchens. The UT Athletics department has also recently made composting a priority and now has a zero waste target for their stadium; something almost unheard of for a university stadium of their size. LOOKING FORWARD The ‘living lab’ is an exciting campus wideproject which is currently in the very early stages. “Various colleges at UT Austin
already offer a variety of courses that include sustainability content, including utilizing campus itself as part of the classroom. We also have a wealth of staff who really care about their work and enjoy sharing it with students. We have all the pieces in place for our campus to be a really great example of a learning lab and we’re just getting started putting all those pieces together.” As well as their attempts to operate sustainably, UT is making efforts to include
sustainability in a wide variety of degrees and courses. “Ideally every student who comes to UT, no matter what major they have, at some point during their university career they will have a class that includes sustainability content,” notes Mr. Walker. An online database has recently been added to the university’s website to help prospective students find out what’s already on offer in terms of courses that include a focus on sustainability. “Every year we put out some
award money for faculty who either creates a new course with a sustainability focus or modifies an existing course to have a greater sustainability focus.” The University of Texas at Austin continues to make strides towards a completely sustainable campus. An inter-departmental team mentality and a proactive attitude is allowing the university to improve their operations, facilities, and academic focus on sustainability. c
THE UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS AT AUSTIN CONTINUES TO MAKE STRIDES TOWARDS A COMPLETELY SUSTAINABLE CAMPUS.
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UNIVERSITY OF VERMONT
SEMBA STUDENTS LEARN TEAM-BUILDING SKILLS AT A ROPES COURSE NEAR CAMPUS.
A PROUD HISTORY AND A BRIGHT FUTURE Sustainable Business Magazine talks to William Cats-Baril, Associate Professor for Information and Decision Sciences in the School of Business and former Director of SEMBA, and Gioia Thompson, Director of the Office of Sustainability, about the University of Vermont’s SEMBA program and campus sustainability. Written by George Harris. Nestled in the leafy city of Burlington, the University of Vermont stands as a beacon of environmental innovation. The state of Vermont, traditionally an agriculture and dairy farming state, has done much to preserve its attractive countryside. Burlington boasts about being the first American city to meet its residents’ electricity needs 52 | SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS MAGAZINE
entirely with renewable energy. “Vermont is a state that is very progressive, a state that is extremely environmentally oriented, both by philosophy and economic imperative,” explains William Cats-Baril, Associate Professor for Information and Decision Sciences in the School of Business. It is this philosophy that drives the University of Vermont
(UVM) to be a sustainability and environmental leader in the academic sphere. SEMBA One of the ways the school is leading is through its forward-thinking SEMBA program, an MBA in which every aspect of the degree is related to sustainability.
GUEST SPEAKER JUSTIN BAKULE, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR FROM SHARED VALUE INITIATIVE SHARES HIS UNIQUE BUSINESS PERSPECTIVE.
“We built what we thought was the ideal MBA curriculum focussing on sustainability,” says Dr. Cats-Baril. “This is not as if we have three different MBAs and this is our MBA of sustainability. This is not an MBA that has three or four courses as electives about sustainability. The whole program is based on sustainability. Marketing, finance, accounting, everything is focussing on the triple bottom line.” The University’s status as a ‘Public Ivy’, its nationally ranked, multi-disciplinary School of Environment and Natural Resources, and its well-regarded School of Medicine attest to UVM’s robust academic credentials. The SEMBA program, which involves 23 different
faculties, continues UVM’s tradition of a multi-disciplinary approach to teaching. “We didn’t build it on who can teach what, we built the ideal curriculum and then we went out looking for who is the best person to teach this course,” explains Dr. Cats-Baril. “Half of them come from the business pool. The rest of them come from the Vermont Law School, from Community Development and Applied Economics, or from the Rubenstein School of Natural Resources. We also have a group of adjuncts who are experts in the field. We have a dream team of faculty from four different institutions delivering a totally new curriculum, totally focussed on sustainability.”
JEFFREY HOLLENDER, VERMONT SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS PIONEER, ENTREPRENEUR AND CO-FOUNDER OF SEVENTH GENERATION, CHATS WITH SEMBA STUDENTS AFTER DELIVERING A LECTURE.
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UNIVERSITY OF VERMONT PICTURED FROM LEFT TO RIGHT ARE THREE OF UVM 11 LEEDS CERTIFIED BUILDINGS: THE DUDLEY H. DAVIS CENTER, THE GEORGE D. AIKEN CENTER AND THE JAMES M. JEFFORDS CENTER (TO THE FAR RIGHT).
A diverse pool of expertise helps to provide a wider perspective on complex sustainability issues and delivers a broader education to its students, while encouraging interaction and networking. The structure of the course comprises an intense 9 month classroom component and a 3 month practicum where students have direct contact with a company which they STUDENTS GLEAN VEGETABLES AT THE INTERVALE CENTER TO LEARN ABOUT SUSTAINABLE FOOD SYSTEMS.
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help develop to become more sustainable. For example, in one accounting unit, a student team partnered with a Mexican tomato farm to develop a triple bottom line assessment of the business. The team began by setting up books for financial reporting purposes, but subsequently addressed the problem of assessing environmental and social impacts of the business and established
measures to do so in real time. “Almost like a consulting engagement,” comments Dr. Cats-Baril. “The faculty member teaching the course was teaching twice a week. One class was completely about ‘theory’ and the second session was the Skype session with the Mexican farmers and applying what was taught that week to create that triple bottom line accounting for the firm.” A similar
SINCE 2004 THESE STUDENTS HAVE BEEN ENCOURAGING THEIR PEERS TO ADOPT ENVIRONMENTALLY RESPONSIBLE BEHAVIORS.
structure applies to other modules such as marketing and organizational behaviour. Some of these integrated projects work with companies like Ben & Jerry’s, creating a life cycle analysis of the carbon footprint of making ice cream, or PepsiCo, developing a locally created, locally flavoured, locally supplied snack food. “These are true learning experiences,” vaunts Dr. Cats-Baril. A STUDENT SERVES HERSELF BUTTERNUT SQUASH SOUP FEATURING ALL VERMONT INGREDIENTS.
CAMPUS SUSTAINABILITY UVM’s impressive record for sustainability on campus derives, in part, from progressive strides made in the 1990s when the current Director of the Office of Sustainability, Gioia Thompson, was studying for her Masters in Natural Resources Planning and staffing the newly established UVM Environmental Council. Two decades later, Ms. Thompson
has not lost her enthusiasm for campus sustainability. “Here at UVM we have a culture of concern and action,” she asserts. An effective way of fomenting UVM’s culture of sustainability and environmental responsibility on campus has been to enlist students as Eco-Reps. Since 2004 these students have been encouraging their peers to adopt environmentally responsible
A VIEW OF THE CAMPUS GREEN AND THE WATERMAN BUILDING WITH THE CITY OF BURLINGTON, LAKE CHAMPLAIN AND THE ADIRONDACK MOUNTAINS IN THE BACKGROUND.
STUDENTS IN AN ENVIRONMENTALLY THEMED RESIDENCE HALL BUILD A CANOE WITH LOCALLY SOURCED WOOD.
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UNIVERSITY OF VERMONT
IN 2007 STUDENTS VOTED FOR AN EXTRA $10 PER SEMESTER TO BE ADDED TO THEIR FEES TO CREATE THE CLEAN ENERGY FUND.
behaviors such as recycling properly, using public transportation, carrying their own water bottles, purchasing local products and services, and reducing energy use. The campus sustainability effort that began with student engagement in
the 1990s has been followed by many other examples of student-led action. In 2007 students voted for an extra $10 per semester to be added to their fees to create the Clean Energy Fund. “The students wanted to see more happening,”
explains Ms. Thompson. “They wanted to see funding opportunities for solar panels, research projects, and lecture series about renewable energy.” The fund calls for students, faculty and staff to submit innovative proposals. Previously funded projects
ENVIRONMENTAL CLASSES AT UVM LIKE THIS ONE TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THE LEARNING LABORATORY VERMONT’S ABUNDANT NATURAL RESOURCES PROVIDE.
STUDENTS PUT IN PLACE A SECTION OF THE GREEN ROOF ON UVM’S AIKEN CENTER. THE GREEN ROOF HAS EIGHT EXPERIMENTAL WATERSHEDS TO TEST THE ABSORPTION CAPABILITY OF DIFFERENT COMBINATIONS OF PLANTS AND SOIL.
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MATT BEAM LOOKS UP FROM THE “ECO-MACHINE” HE DESIGNED AND BUILT, WHICH USES NATURAL SYSTEMS TO TREAT ALL THE WASTE WATER IN UVM’S GEORGE D. AIKEN CENTER, HOME OF THE UNIVERSITY’S RUBENSTEIN SCHOOL OF ENVIRONMENT AND NATURAL RESOURCES.
UVM ECO-REPS SORT THROUGH TRASH THEY’VE COLLECTED FROM THE DAVIS CENTER TO DETERMINE WHAT SHOULD HAVE BEEN CYCLED. THE “TRASH-SORTS” ARE DESIGNED TO MOTIVATE STUDENTS, FACULTY AND STAFF TO RECYCLE MORE.
within our campus community, and also with colleagues at other institutions.” SUSTAINABLE EXPANSION A proud achievement of the University of Vermont has been an ambitious expansion of campus without increasing the environmental footprint from energy use. Through careful planning the university has managed to expand by about a third, both in terms of building space and student population, since 2002 without increasing its energy use. Chiefly, this has been the result of two approaches. The first was a drive to upgrade
include solar panels on the heating plant and the equine center, a zero-emissions race car, a comprehensive campus renewable energy feasibility study, and a bike planning project. The university’s Gold accreditation from STARS, AASHE’s Sustainability Tracking Assessment and Rating System, documents the many facets of sustainability implemented throughout the campus. STARS examines elements of a university’s activities in the realms of Academics, Engagement, Operations, and Planning and Administration. “STARS establishes a common language and common understanding of what sustainability means for higher education and how to measure it,” says Ms. Thompson. “The rating system helps us provide the framework for conversation
energy systems in existing buildings and to invest in more efficient, centralized utility systems. The second was a formal policy enacted in 2004 that all new buildings would require a minimum of LEED Silver certification and formal commissioning. These two approaches epitomize the spirit of UVM: Preserving their proud historic buildings while creating highly efficient, technologically advanced facilities for the future. c Photography provided by Sally McCay, Ian Jansen-Lonnquist, Paul O. Boisvert, Andy Duback, Courtney Crowley, and John Turner.
UVM ECO-REPS DISTRIBUTE RE-USABLE “SPORKS” TO STUDENTS TO REDUCE THE USE OF DISPOSABLE PLASTIC FORKS AND SPOONS.
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UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHERN MISSISSIPPI
AND EAGER Sustainable Business Magazine talks to Haley McMinn, Assistant Director of Sustainability at The University of Southern Mississippi, about their increased focus on sustainability. Written by Thomas Massey.
BUILT IN 1912 AS ONE OF THE FIVE ORIGINAL BUILDINGS OF THE UNIVERSITY, COLLEGE HALL WAS RECENTLY REMODELED TO INCLUDE OCCUPANCY SENSORS AND 90% LED LIGHTING FIXTURES.
Haley McMinn, Assistant Director of Sustainability at The University of Southern Mississippi’s (Southern Miss) Office of Sustainability, is the woman charged with running the university’s sustainability related campus initiatives. Since opening their Office of Sustainability in 2008, Southern Miss has been promoting sustainability in all areas of campus life. Ms. McMinn explains that it’s important to educate members of the university community about what sustainability can achieve, and also to make 58 | SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS MAGAZINE
SINCE OPENING THEIR OFFICE OF SUSTAINABILITY IN 2008, SOUTHERN MISS HAS BEEN PROMOTING SUSTAINABILITY IN ALL AREAS OF CAMPUS LIFE.
AFTER LOSING MORE THAN 75 TREES IN A 2013 TORNADO, SOUTHERN MISS HAS WORKED NON-STOP TO RE-ESTABLISH AND MAINTAIN A HEALTHY URBAN FOREST.
sure everyone has access to the various sustainability initiatives. “Our office has quite a large educational arm. A large part of what we do is work on education campaigns to reach out to staff, faculty, and students, however all of our programs are available to the general public as well. We are really trying to reach, and impact , as many people as we can.” An example of this is the Southern Miss Farmers Market. The market allows local farmers, as well as members of the university community, to sell products such as
fruit, vegetables, baked goods, and locally sourced honey. The initiative has proved very successful and is benefitting not just the university community, but also the wider Hattiesburg area. OPERATIONS AND OVERSIGHT In 2008, Southern Miss became signatories of the American College & University Presidents’ Climate Commitment. “Oversight is such an important part of operating sustainably,” explains Ms. McMinn. “Following
the signing of the American College and University Presidents’ Climate Commitment we took the step of publishing a university Climate Action Plan. The plan consists of approximately 175 mitigation strategies, which will help us achieve the goal of becoming carbon neutral by 2050. Our first goal was to have achieved a 25% reduction in our carbon emissions by the end of the fiscal year 2015. We actually reached that goal by the end of the fiscal year 2013, so we’re ahead of schedule.” SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS MAGAZINE
UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHERN MISSISSIPPI
THE OFFICE OF SUSTAINABILITY HAS BEEN RUNNING COMPETITIVE ON-CAMPUS RECYCLING DRIVES ALONGSIDE THE NATIONAL RECYCLEMANIA COMPETITION.
THE SOUTHERN MISS OFFICE OF SUSTAINABILITY OVERSEES ALL RECYCLING EFFORTS ACROSS CAMPUS, PROMOTING EDUCATION AND BEHAVIOR THAT PROMOTES THE TENETS OF SUSTAINABILITY.
CENTURY PARK SOUTH IS A THREE BUILDING, 954-BED RESIDENTIAL FACILITY BEING BUILT TO INCLUDE THE MOST CURRENT ENERGY EFFICIENT TECHNOLOGIES.
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The introduction of state legislation in Mississippi aimed at improving energy efficiency emphasizes the need to minimize negative environmental impacts of operations and activities. “Another aspect of oversight is responding to mandates handed down by the state,” explains Ms. McMinn. “Senate bill 2821 mandates that we reduce our energy consumption by 30% by the end of fiscal year 2015. I’m not sure how other universities are doing in the state, but as of last year we were at 29.5% energy reduction, which equates to approximately $10,000,000 of savings we have been able to make since 2009.” Ms. McMinn also explains that Southern Miss have worked to make sustainability an integral consideration during the construction and renovation of campus buildings. The university has become increasingly involved with the U.S. Green Building Council and their LEED v4. Program. “Our goal is to build to LEED certification standards. The last few years we have built two residence halls: The first was the first LEED gold certified building in the state and the second is being built targeting the gold standard as we speak.”
SEVENTEEN TEAMS FROM VARIOUS CAMPUS DEPARTMENTS PARTICIPATED IN THIS YEAR’S RECYCLETHON, WHICH RESULTED IN THE DIVERSION OF MORE THAN 41,000 POUNDS OF RECYCLABLE MATERIAL FROM THE LANDFILL.
RECYCLEMANIA The success of sustainability-related campus initiatives at Southern Miss can largely be attributed to the hard work of staff, faculty, and students alike. As well as the Farmers Market and the EcoEagle Bike Program, an initiative which offers students
OCCUPANCY SENSORS THAT SHUT OFF LIGHTS WHEN OFFICES AND CLASSROOMS ARE NOT IN USE ARE BEING INSTALLED WHEN POSSIBLE TO REDUCE ENERGY USAGE.
free bikes to help cut down on carbon emissions, the university has focused heavily on recycling. The Office of Sustainability has been running competitive on-campus recycling drives alongside the national Recyclemania competition. Ms. McMinn explains that due to the competitive nature
of American universities, and particularly the historic rivalries that exist between particular institutions, the competitiveness breeds an environment that motivates members of the campus community to learn more about how they can recycle effectively. “A big thing we do is Recy-
EARTH WEEK FESTIVITIES INCLUDED AN EARTH FAIR WITH REPRESENTATIVES FROM BOTH CAMPUS AND COMMUNITY ORGANIZATIONS, AS WELL AS AN ALTERNATIVE CAR SHOW, WHICH ALLOWED DEALERSHIPS TO SHOWCASE ELECTRIC, HYBRID AND NATURAL GAS VEHICLES.
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UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHERN MISSISSIPPI
THE INCREDIBLE PROGRESS THAT SOUTHERN MISS HAS MADE IN SUCH A SHORT TIME IS TESTAMENT TO THEIR COMMITMENT TO SUSTAINABILITY.
clethon, which is a campus competition that runs in conjunction with the national Recyclemania competition. We’re only in our third year of doing it but it has made a big difference. Recyclethon is a huge deal on this campus now. People get so into it. We have offices that create teams of faculty, staff, and students and it becomes this huge educational opportunity. People 62 | SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS MAGAZINE
start to realize just how much of what they use is recyclable.” As well as generally increasing the amount of recycling that happens around campus, Southern Miss have been keen to focus on areas where waste can be a particular problem. An emphasis on recycling on the day of college football games has involved placing more recycling recepta-
cles around the stadium, half time stadium sweeps, tail gate recycling, and thorough clean ups once the Southern Miss Golden Eagle fans have dispersed. “Most of the time there is a lot of recyclable material left amongst the trash that gets left in the stands,” says Ms. McMinn. “The Southern Miss custodial department is our biggest supporter and our biggest partner. The staff
THE UNIVERSITY HAS IMPLEMENTED A LIGHTING UPGRADE THAT HAS RESULTED IN A CAMPUS-WIDE REDUCTION IN ELECTRICITY DEMAND.
contributing ever more to local initiatives as they learn about how to live sustainably. The incredible progress that Southern Miss has made in such a short time is testament to their commitment to sustainability. This commitment is something that Haley McMinn is keen to see continue and
increase as Southern Miss looks to the future. “We just need to continue with what we have been doing. I think we are going to see more large scale projects take place on campus as a percentage of our $10,000,000 energy savings will be reinvested in sustainable projects at the university.” c
SECURITY LIGHTING UPGRADES ACROSS CAMPUS REPLACED 250-WATT BULBS WITH 96-WATT LED BULBS.
does just the best job. They are here, 5:00 a.m. the day after game day, scouring the stadium for recyclable materials.” GATHERING MOMENTUM Sustainability efforts at The University of Southern Mississippi are gathering momentum. Members of the campus community, as well as the greater Hattiesburg area, are SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS MAGAZINE
CANSIA GAME CHANGER AWARDS GALA 2015
“THOSE WHO STAND ABOVE AND RISE TO THE CHALLENGES OF OUR INDUSTRY SIMPLY MUST BE CELEBRATED.”
PHOTO CREDIT: GREG PAUPST.
Sustainable Business Magazine takes a close look at this year’s Canadian Solar Industries Association (CanSIA) Game Changer Awards Gala, an awards ceremony focusing on the accomplishments of the men and women in the Canadian solar energy industry. Written by Michael Anjos. With approximately three hundred members of the solar energy industry in attendance, the Game Changer Awards Gala was a sold out event. The Gala was held on the 26th of March 2015 and was hosted by the Canadian Solar Industries 64 | SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS MAGAZINE
Association (CanSIA), a non-profit national trade association that works on behalf of its many members to facilitate and promote the sustainable growth of solar energy across Canada. CanSIA has been helping to produce a vibrant and robust
Canadian solar industry since 1992, when the Canadian Solar Industries Association (CSIA) and the Canadian Photovoltaic Industries Association (CPIA) merged together to form the organization in its current form.
PHOTO CREDIT: GREG PAUPST.
RECOGNIZING INDIVIDUAL CONTRIBUTION The first segment of the awards gala focused on the accomplishments of individuals within the industry, as opposed to the collective contributions made by entire corporations. The first of these awards was the Solar Industry Leader Award which was presented to Brian Bentz, President and CEO of PowerStream Inc., for the impact his leadership has had on the growth and development of the solar industry in Canada, and the example he has set to others in the field.
This was followed by the award for Emerging Solar Leader, an award for students and graduates aged 18 – 30 who have demonstrated an aptitude for leadership in the industry and enthusiasm for promoting the adoption of renewable solar energy, as demonstrated by Jonathan Frank, Business Development Manager at SunEdison, who claimed this year’s award. Jen Aitchison, Partner at Jones Brown Inc., was chosen for the President’s Solar Award in recognition of her volunteer efforts to promote renewable energy and
PHOTO CREDIT: GREG PAUPST.
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CANSIA GAME CHANGER AWARDS GALA 2015
PHOTO CREDIT: GREG PAUPST.
environmental sustainability. Unlike most of the awards at the Gala, this award is not decided by nominations, but is instead chosen by the President. Finally, the Women of Distinction Award is a joint endeavor between CanSIA and Women in Renewable Energy (WiRE) to establish a new award highlighting the contributions made by women in the Canadian solar industry. This inaugural award was accepted by Michelle Chislett, Vice President and Country Manager at SunEdison. INDUSTRY INNOVATORS As well as recognizing contributions from individuals within the industry, the Game 66 | SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS MAGAZINE
Changer Awards Gala also works to highlight the efforts of corporations to improve Canadaâ€™s environmental sustainability; this can include companies working outside of the solar energy industry. The Solar Adopter Award acknowledges the impact made by corporations from outside the solar supply-chain who promote sustainable practices for themselves, their suppliers, and their customers. This year the award went to Baka Communications Inc., an independent Bell Mobility dealer in Canada. Itâ€™s worth noting that not all the awards in the corporate awards segment are aimed at corporations, the Community/First Nations' Solar Project Award, for instance,
is an award that recognizes the efforts of communities and First Nation groups in setting up solar based energy projects with the aim of improving both the local community and the environment at large. This acknowledgement of independent dedication to environmental sustainability went to the Lutsel K'e Dene First Nation, a designated authority in the North Slave Region of the Northwest Territories of Canada. Economic viability is vital for nation-wide adoption of solar energy in Canada. For solar energy to become widespread, financial innovation and commercial backing is necessary. This is why CanSIA recognizes efforts made in this area with two separate
The Solar Developer Award, an award centered on the quality of a company’s development process, with a heavy focus on meaningful stakeholder engagement, strong project management, predicted output, and project returns, was picked up by SunEdison, while the award for Energy Management went to Panasonic Eco Solutions Canada Inc. in recognition of their successful efforts to integrate solar into a holistic energy management environment. The final two awards of the night were awarded to the Institutional, Commercial or Industrial (ICI) solar thermal projects which through high visibility, meaningful stakeholder engagement, or innovative features, helped the solar thermal and solar PV industries become mainstream. The Solar Thermal Project of the Year Award went to the Town of Canmore, while the Solar PV Project of the Year Award was presented to Edmonton’s Mosaic Centre for Conscious Community and Commerce.
awards. The first focuses on the creative ways in which solar based energy projects have been funded. The award is called the Project Finance Innovation Award and was won by Grasshopper Solar, a solar panel installation company working out of Ontario. The second award is the Solar Service Excellence Award. This award honors the commitment to excellent service to the solar sector demonstrated by a member of the engineering, construction, legal, accounting, banking, or financial services industry. This year’s award was collected by SunRise Power, previous winner of the Game Changers 2013 Solar Innovator of the Year Award.
THE FUTURE OF SOLAR The 2015 Game Changer Awards Gala was the latest in a line of successful CanSIA awards ceremonies celebrating excellence in the Canadian solar industry. The association can now look ahead to future events such as their annual Solar Ontario conference in May, an event which focuses on the latest policies, market trends, and technology affecting the solar energy industry, and their 7th annual Summer Solstice networking event in June. This is to say nothing of next year’s Game Changer Awards ceremony, which will undoubtedly prove to be another wildly successful celebration of innovation and dedication to the widespread adoption of solar energy as a mainstream Canadian power source. As CanSIA proudly declare on the Game Changer Awards website, “Those who stand above and rise to the challenges of our industry simply must be celebrated.” c
PHOTO CREDIT: GREG PAUPST.
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MAY 2015 SUSTAINABLE
B U S I N E S S
4th - 7th
2015 Alternative Clean Transportation “ACT” Expo Dallas, TX, USA www.actexpo.com
North America’s largest clean fleet show caters to all weight classes and alternative fuel types and provides a one-stop shop for fleets to learn how to reduce costs and emissions.
10th - 13th
ICSDEC 2015 Chicago, IL, USA www.icsdec.com
The International Conference on Sustainable Design, Engineering and Construction (ICSDEC 2015) offers a unique opportunity for academics, industry practitioners, and entrepreneurs to share their latest research, ideas, and products relating to sustainability and resilience.
14th - 15th
Canadian Hydropower Association’s 2015 Forum on Hydropower Ottawa, ON, Canada www.hydroforum.ca
Learn how the hydropower industry is fostering aboriginal relationships and delivering environmental improvements while addressing the need for skilled labour. Also discover how hydro developers are communicating the industry’s challenges and successes.
19th - 20th
Low Carbon Energy Investor Forum 2015 San Francisco, CA, USA
Leading global investors, fund managers, and energy industry executives discuss current and future investment opportunities available in the asset classes of infrastructure, private equity, and venture capital as they relate to cleaner energy.
Sustainable Purchasing Leadership Council 2015 Summit Seattle, WA, USA
SPLC’s annual summit provides an opportunity to learn best practices, share knowledge, build valuable relationships, and influence the development of SPLC’s programs for guiding and benchmarking leadership in institutional sustainable purchasing.
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For more information please contact us at: email@example.com
25th - 26th
Sustainable Brands 2015 San Diego, CA, USA
The largest gathering of global sustainability and brand professionals who have focused attention on understanding and leveraging the role of brands in shaping our future.
7th - 10th
The 5th International Conference on Algal Biomass, Biofuels & Bioproducts San Diego, CA, USA www.algalbbb.com
The conference provides attending delegates with direct interaction with scientific and technical leaders in the field. Emphasis will be placed on the latest unpublished technical and scientific results.
15th - 17th
9th Québec Wind Energy Conference
The Quebec Wind Energy Conference is a not-to-be-missed annual gathering attended by over 250 participants from diverse backgrounds. The event focuses on innovation and wind industry issues and this year’s theme is ‘Driven by Wind!’.
1st - 4th
Carleton-sur-mer, QC, Canada www.eolien.ca/colloque/en/home2015.html
28th - July 1st
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IDEA Annual Conference & Trade Show Boston, MA, USA www.districtenergy.org
The International District Energy Association’s 106th Annual Conference and Trade Show will be held in Boston, Massachusetts. This years theme is ‘Inspiring the Next Generation’.
Online Diploma on Corporate Sustainability Foundation Course Approved by IEMA
An approved online course for all professionals, entrepreneurs, and graduates that want to have a recognized qualification. What you will get from the diploma on Corporate Responsibility?
Why this course is unique?
• One of the Best Sellers in Sustainability from the Global Sustainability Expert, Nikos Avlonas “Practical Sustainability Strategies” published by Wiley in an e-book for free. • Training material and practical updated knowledge on Corporate Sustainability. • Quizzes for justify learnings in every module. • Sustainability reports related to your sector.
• You can do it in 30 days, save money and time from traveling and accommodation. • One of the Best Sellers on Sustainability is part of the course material. • Course co-designed by CSE and one of the global leaders in Sustainability, Nikos Avlonas who is the book writer and recognized as a thought leader by Trust Across America.
NEW YORK, USA (JUNE 18-19)
Advanced Certified Sustainability (CSR) Practitioner Training Topics discussed include: • Current Global and Local Legislation for CSR and GHG emissions, Sustainability (CSR) • Strategy and Related Global Standards & Guidelines (UN Global Compact, GRI G4, CDP, SROI) • The importance of Sustainability in Supply Chain and Carbon Footprint reduction • External Assurance and how to communicate and gain credibility in your report and many more trending topics.
Image source: www.newyorkbyrail.com
Don’t miss out on the opportunity to become the next certified CSR Practitioner!
For more information visit http://www.cse-net.org/article/127/upcoming-trainings or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org Victoria Karkouli, Marketing Coordinator • T: 3122146464 • 70 W Madison Str.,Suite 1400, Chicago, IL 60602, USA
SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS MAGAZINE
ADVERTISERS INDEX A ATA Architects Inc.
Chartwells CIBC Mellon
Inside Front Back Cover
K Kirk Mechanical Limited
B BASF P15
D Dyplast Products
M McCallum Sather Architects Inc.
C Centre for Sustainability and Excellence
J Jim Dent Construction
T The Water Expo
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