NBIS | Network for Business Innovation and Sustainability » NewsNBIS. Network for business innovation and sustainability.


News

Loading...

Welcome to NBIS

We provide regional leadership, professional development programs and a collaborative cross-sector community to advance sustainability through the power of business.

What we offer:

Expertise

Deepen your capacity to lead and implement sustainability initiatives. Learn more about NBIS’ track record and leadership.

Education

Access the latest tools and strategies, from the tried-and-true to the most innovative approaches. Learn more about our programs and events

Partnerships

Form valuable connections across industries and sectors. Learn more about our broad member community.

Volunteer Position: By-Product Synergy and Zero Waste Program Support

By-Product Synergy banner

Description:

NBIS’ signature By-Product Synergy Northwest program brings businesses and communities together to develop opportunities for reducing solid waste and fostering economic development through the diversion of materials to local reuse. By closing material loops, we seek to facilitate the transition to a zero-waste circular economy.

This summer NBIS was hired by the City of Denver to assist with the development and launch of a similar, Colorado-based waste-to-resources program. To support this work, we are seeking professional or student volunteers to assist our Executive Director with planning a number of community educational events, establishing two materials working groups, and promoting the use of our online Materials Innovation Exchange.

 

Responsibilities (proposed):

  • Provide outreach and logistical support in identifying local, cross-sector stakeholders and scheduling meetings;
  • Conduct material flow analyses for two priority waste streams—organics and glass—and research waste reduction practices and reuse alternatives;
  • Assist in managing event logistics, such as setting up event registration sites, acquiring food and beverages, tracking budgets, etc;
  • Perform outreach to prospective event speakers, venue hosts and corporate sponsors;
  • Develop engaging promotional materials and conduct promotional outreach through NBIS’ communication channels, social media and community partners;
  • Build awareness and use of the Materials Innovation Exchange by performing outreach to businesses for materials postings, helping to facilitate trades and sales, and writing and publicizing case studies.

 

Qualifications:

  • Excellent and engaging written and communication skills;
  • Independent worker capable of taking initiative and maintaining flexibility;
  • Passion for mission and goals of NBIS and ability to absorb and integrate these into work;
  • (Desired) Work experience in environmental management or industrial/manufacturing sector AND/OR experience with professional event planning and marketing;
  • Prospective volunteers may be based in either Washington or Colorado.

 

Time Commitment and Compensation:

Volunteers interested in this role are requested to make a minimum commitment of 8 hours a week.

This position is uncompensated, though all NBIS volunteers are rewarded through the mentorship, training and connections provided. Volunteers benefit from our reputation and network as we engage a wide community of business, public-sector and non-profit professionals. Working alongside our Executive Directors, Board members and other volunteers, you will gain valuable work experience, contributing concretely to NBIS’ strength as an impact-driven organization.

NOTE: internship credit is available for current students.

 

How to Apply:

Please send a short cover letterresume and a relevant writing sample to Lexie Carr at lexiec[at]nbis.org.

Volunteer Position: Event Planning Support

Milgard presentation

Description:

NBIS is known for producing high-quality educational and networking events that involve a combination of both visionary and practical concepts, strategies, tools, conversations and collaborations. Through our Eco-Hour showcases and socials, Breakthrough Sustainability Seminars, Sustainability Champions Roundtable meetings, and By-Product Synergy workshops, we engage and equip a broad range of industries and stakeholders to become sustainable business leaders.

To this end, NBIS is seeking professional or student volunteers who can provide high-quality event planning support. In particular, we are looking for individuals who can participate in and contribute to team brainstorms and discussions and who possesses strong savviness in the area of marketing.

 

Responsibilities (proposed):

  • Research leading-edge thinking, best practices, tools, and case studies in a range of sustainable business topics and contribute to the development of event agendas and content;
  • Assist in managing event logistics, such as setting up event registration sites, acquiring food and beverages, tracking budgets, etc;
  • Perform outreach to prospective speakers, venue hosts and corporate sponsors;
  • Develop engaging promotional materials and conduct promotional outreach through NBIS’ communication channels, social media and community partners.

 

Qualifications:

  • Excellent verbal and written communications skills, emphasizing promotional communications;
  • Familiarity with leading-edge thought and practices in sustainable business field;
  • Independent worker capable of taking initiative and maintaining flexibility;
  • Passion for mission and goals of NBIS and ability to absorb and integrate these into work;
  • (Desired) Experience with professional event planning and marketing.

 

Time Commitment and Compensation:

Volunteers interested in this role are requested to make a minimum commitment of 4 hours a week.

This position is uncompensated, though all NBIS volunteers are rewarded through the mentorship, training and connections provided. Volunteers benefit from our reputation and network as we engage a wide community of business, public-sector and non-profit professionals. Working alongside our Executive Directors, Board members and other volunteers, you will gain valuable work experience, contributing concretely to NBIS’ strength as an impact-driven organization.

NOTE: internship credit is available for current students.

 

How to Apply:

Please send a short cover letterresume and a relevant writing sample to Lexie Carr at lexiec[at]nbis.org.

 

Volunteer Position: Grant Research and Donation Management Support

Seminar long

Description:

NBIS has a vision—a vision of a world in which businesses have embraced their full potential to generate prosperity while contributing to thriving communities and ecosystems, on which they also depend. For the last 13 years, NBIS has dedicated itself to sharing this vision with hundreds of companies and community partners and providing them with the resources and collaboration opportunities they need to create transformative impact.

However, like other non-profit organizations, NBIS relies on the critical support of individual and organizational contributions to maintain and build upon our work. To this end, NBIS is seeking professional or student volunteers who can provide high-quality support in the area of grant research and donation management. In particular, we are looking for individuals who can participate in and contribute to team brainstorms and discussions and help us implement several project-based initiatives to improve our development strategy and management process.

 

Responsibilities (proposed):

  • Research and record grant opportunities for NBIS program and operational support;
  • Analyze current workflow processes related to donor acquisition and relationship management;
  • Develop and improve donor-related processes and materials, such as standard communication templates and segmentation practices;
  • Support integration of updated donor- and grant-related processes and materials into NBIS’ new Salesforce CRM platform (currently in development).

 

Qualifications:

  • Excellent and engaging written and communication skills;
  • Familiarity with leading-edge thought and practices in sustainability and environmental fields;
  • Independent worker capable of taking initiative and maintaining flexibility;
  • Passion for mission and goals of NBIS and ability to absorb and integrate these into work;
  • (Desired) Experience in any of the following: fundraising & development; donor relations; grant writing & management.

 

Time Commitment and Compensation:

Volunteers interested in this role are requested to make a minimum commitment of 4 hours a week.

This position is uncompensated, though all NBIS volunteers are rewarded through the mentorship, training and connections provided. Volunteers benefit from our reputation and network as we engage a wide community of business, public-sector and non-profit professionals. Working alongside our Executive Directors, Board members and other volunteers, you will gain valuable work experience, contributing concretely to NBIS’ strength as an impact-driven organization.

NOTE: internship credit is available for current students.

 

How to Apply:

Please send a short cover letterresume and a relevant writing sample to Lexie Carr at lexiec[at]nbis.org.

Join our campaign to raise $20,000 by May 3rd!

h_GiveBIG-2016

btn_donate

For over thirteen years, the NBIS community has demonstrated what we can accomplish together. We’ve empowered business owners, professionals, and aspiring change-makers with innovative strategies, practical tools and cross-sector collaborations to leverage the capacity of business to make a difference, locally and globally.

BPS foundry meeting 1There has been outstanding progress from the business community worldwide and here in the Pacific Northwest. All over, companies are measuring the environmental impact of their operations and products and identifying opportunities for sustainable innovation. They are implementing fair labor policies to improve working conditions and equitable development for people domestically and abroad. They are engaging in pre-competitive collaboration to leverage momentum from their industries as a whole, and engaging in advocacy for progressive environmental policies, as demonstrated in Paris during COP21.

But as forward-looking businesses know, in order to meet the challenges of climate change, resource scarcity and related social and economic disruption, we need to do more.

Breakthrough Sustainability

NBIS’ new Breakthrough Sustainability programs help the business community take the next step.

Tacoma RoundtableBy offering educational seminars and tools, peer learning roundtables, networking opportunities, facilitated partnerships and expert consultation, we are enabling businesses to set bolder goals that fully account for the scientific urgency of today’s challenges, discover innovations that deliver enhanced value propositions while reducing direct and indirect costs, and engage in broader collaboration that convenes stakeholders from the private and public sectors around shared value initiatives for better coordination and scaled impact.

But we need your help.

Giving to NBIS

This year, NBIS’ goal is to raise $20,000 during the Seattle Foundation’s GiveBIG campaign. The funds we raise during GiveBIG, along with increased memberships and sponsorships, will be critical in enabling us to:

  • Launch new “Breakthrough Sustainability” seminars presenting leading-edge thinking, innovative strategies and examples of companies putting them into practice
  • Publish a new white paper and other educational resources and case studies
  • Host more Eco-Hours showcasing the sustainability efforts of local companies
  • Grow current initiatives to convene stakeholders and build capacity for regional leadership

With urgency from the challenges facing today’s world, and excitement about what we know we can accomplish together, we invite you to partner with us in building a more sustainable, equitable and prosperous world.

How to Give

This year, the Seattle Foundation is making it even easier to give. Instead of waiting until May 3rd, you can pre-schedule your gift today! Simply visit NBIS’ profile on the GiveBIG portal, and schedule your gift online any time between April 18th and May 3rd.
btn_donate

We thank you very much for your support!

GiveBigLogo_colorMore about GiveBIG

GiveBIG is a unique, one-day, online charitable giving event encouraging residents of King County to give locally. Through GiveBIG, King County residents are asked to give to local nonprofits of their choosing through The Seattle Foundation’s online Giving Center. Contributions are partially matched by a “stretch pool” provided by The Seattle Foundation and GiveBIG sponsors.

Help us spread the word about GiveBIG (and NBIS’ campaign) to colleagues, family and friends through your social networks and tag #GIVEBIG in your posts!

“After COP21” Seminar Inspires and Calls Washington Businesses to Action

By Julia Goldstein, Freelance Commercial Writer

COP21, the 21st Council of the Parties that convened in Paris in December 2015 to address climate change, was historic for several reasons.

  1. Delegates from 195 countries pledged support of the first universal climate change agreement. High-level support from the U.S., after notable absence at previous COP meetings, sent an important signal to the global community.
  2. Businesses from many different sectors – including real estate, finance, manufacturing, and healthcare – traveled to Paris to show their support, suggesting recognition that climate change represents a threat to their long-term financial success and a willingness to be part of the solution.
  3. The “Compact of Mayors” included representatives from over 400 cities around the world, sending the message that local governments are supportive of and engaged in addressing the risks of climate change.
  4. The non-governmental sectors were also strongly represented adding to the diversity of voices and augmenting the pressure on governmental decision-makers to enact a significant agreement to address issues of climate change and its impacts.

On February 25th, NBIS invited panelists who had attended COP21, as well as other local advocates, to discuss the summit’s results and business strategies moving forward. Attendees at the Seattle meeting represented a broad spectrum of industries and nonprofit organizations, as well as local governments.

The “After COP21” event began with a Report from Paris panel, in which KC Golden, Senior Policy Advisor with Climate Solutions, provided an historical viewpoint. Golden has attended previous COPs and applauds the efforts of the U.S. to finally step up to the table. He boldly stated, “The U.S. Senate has been holding up the whole world for 25 years,” delaying climate change efforts.

The COP21 attendees focused on the issue of leadership – from the U.S., from Washington State, and from local governments and businesses. “This is not an issue we can ignore,” said former King County Council member Larry Phillips. He noted that King County has chosen to be a leader and recently updated its climate change plan.

The county has adopted the goal of reducing its greenhouse gas emissions by at least 80% by 2050, and the city of Seattle is working toward the goal of being carbon neutral by 2050. Cooperation from cities throughout King County is necessary to improve the chance of achieving this goal. To that end, mayors of 13 King County cities are working together to develop strategies that will help the entire region reduce carbon emissions and create a sustainable economy despite explosive growth. As one example, Metro Transit is making changes, such as replacing aging vehicles with electric buses, that will reduce greenhouse gas emissions throughout the Puget Sound region.

Sarah Severn, an industry consultant and advisor to Washington Business for Climate Action, said COP21 experienced “a complete shift and a sea change” in the global approach to climate change because of the significant business presence at the summit. Richard Eidlin, Co-Founder of the American Sustainable Business Council, spoke about the growing community of progressive businesses who support carbon tax policies and the power they hold to disrupt entrenched assumptions that addressing climate change is bad for business.

The Business Strategy Seminar panel that followed the Paris report emphasized that while government support is necessary for combatting climate change it is not sufficient without the participation of business. Brenna Davis, Director of Sustainability at Virginia Mason, emphasized the achievements of its hospitals in reducing energy consumption and waste. “Planet health is patient health,” she said, in reference to the effect of air pollution, increases in infectious diseases, and natural disasters such as hurricanes on community health. Resilience of hospital facilities in the face of climate disasters is also a significant challenge.

Brett Phillips, Director of Sustainability at Unico Properties, said “Opposition from the business community will quickly be drowned out” as major players make advances in reducing emissions while maintaining profitability. Google, for example, has pledged to make its facilities completely solar-powered by 2025.

Severn urged Washington’s businesses not to miss the opportunity in front of them, making the point that businesses in countries with cap and trade agreements will be future industry leaders and will be better situated to attract capital due to their innovativeness and advanced risk management strategies.

Panelists discussed the role of leveraging business’ buying power and collaborating with their suppliers to broaden their impact both within industrial factories in the U.S. and abroad. For example, because of Pacific Market International (PMI)’s proactive approach to working with its factories in China, one of its factories reported a 54% drop in carbon footprint, based on emissions per 10,000 units of product produced. The company is currently installing solar panels on the roof of one factory and benefitting from local incentives to offset costs.

Demonstrating the Circular Economy in action, Unico has partnered with Cedar Grove Composting, which has facilities in Seattle and Woodinville, to compost restroom paper towels in some commercial buildings and in turn buy Cedar Grove compost for landscaping at these same properties.

For some companies, even though multiple technologies exist today to address greenhouse gas emissions, the price of implementing them still poses a barrier. The Seattle 2030 District, a private/public partnership, presents solutions for overcoming these barriers by, among other efforts, providing a platform for group buying power.

Local governments and businesses are making progress toward addressing climate change, but they need to share their success stories to spread the circle of influence. As Severn said, “Legislators need business voices to step up and tell them to get their act together.”

A first step that businesses can take to build this voice is to sign the Washington Business Climate Declaration and to learn more about the related work of Washington Business for Climate Action, Climate Solutions, and the American Sustainable Business Council. An equally critical step is for companies to focus on accelerating implementation of sustainability initiatives and on building collaboration opportunities. Companies seeking to do so are encouraged to join NBIS’ member network of sustainable business leaders, attend its educational and networking events and participate in its peer roundtables.

For those who missed the After COP21 seminar and want to learn more, a video recording of the entire event will be posted on the NBIS website.