Monday, September 12, 2011

Report from The Green Economy Action Roadshow

The Green Economy Action Roadshow took place on September 9 and 10, 2011, at Moraine Valley Community College, in Palos Hills, Illinois. This green event gave participants the opportunity to meet with businesses, public agencies and experts involved in the Green Economy. Presented by The Delta Institute and Mindful Metropolis, the Green Economy Action Roadshow is a two-day event designed to connect, transform and empower green business, government and lifestyles. The event is focused on helping people to find partners and other resources to help grow with the Green Economy.

During the event participants met stakeholders and learned about what communities, municipalities and businesses are and can be doing in the Green Economy. Participants also heard about emerging opportunities in the Green Economy and they had access to information and resources as well as developing relationships and building local green supply chains

The first day of the conference participants learned how to engage the green Economy to create business opportunities they also learned about supply chains, carbon, financing, positioning and marketing. There were networking opportunities and opportunities to review ideas with industry experts.

On Friday September 9th, there was a session titled "Sustainability and the Supply Chain," presented by Ryan Anderson. This session looked at how businesses up and down the supply chain are reducing energy use and carbon emissions and meet other sustainability performance requirements in order to save money and remain competitive.

Another session was entitled "Green Certifications: What Do They Mean, Who Needs Them?" This session was presented by Abby Corso and Doug Widener, Executive Director, U.S. Geen Building Council- Illinois Chapter. There are hundreds of environmental certifications available, and many businesses wonder which ones, if any, to adopt. What should buyers be looking for and how do they decide? When does it make sense to certify, and which certifications hold the most weight?

In a session titled "Energy Efficiency and Your Operation" presenters Kevin Dick and Meena Beyers showed how even a modest investment in energy efficiency can produce a substantial payback and found out about incentives that make it affordable for a limited time.

At the session "Talking Dollars and Sense about Sustainability," presenters Abby Corso and Jon Levey, reviews the challenges of finding the resources to invest in sustainability. This session explored the many sources of funding for sustainability initiatives, from loans, to grants, to tax incentives and other creative methods to support implementation.

On the second day of the event there was a green consumer exhibition. This included consumer workshops and demonstrations on green purchasing, energy efficiency/home weatherization, deconstruction/reuse, sustainable/ local food, alternative transportation, and more. There were also opportunities to meet with experts on the above topics.

On Saturday September 10th the session "Energy: The Next Generation" reviewed the winners and the losers in the future energy marketplace and the role of wind, solar, geothermal and other energy alternatives. Presenters:

The workshop, "From Costly to Cozy: Saving Money and Energy at Home" by presenters: Vanessa Roanhorse and Cheryl Pomeroy, reviewed tax credits and subsidies as they relate to home weatherization their homes. This session explained how weatherization can improve comfort and reduce the cost of home-ownership, and a healthier home.

The workshop "Electronics and the Waste Stream" reviewed e-waste as one of the fastest growing categories of pollution. The workshop explained how to safely dispose of electronic devices, including how they may be upgraded or refurbished for reuse or donation.

The final workshop was titled, "Real Green Careers and How to Train for Them," it was presented by Kindy Kruller and Eda Schrimple. This workshop reviewed how the green economy is generating real jobs in many different industries, including clean energy, waste and water management, green building and other emerging areas. The workshop also explored where to find the training to prepare for a green career.

© 2011, Richard Matthews. All rights reserved

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