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The Scoop

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Verbatim: Fort Wayne expands ‘Bright Green’ program

Statement issued Monday:

Fort Wayne businesses are beginning a new chapter – a greener chapter – as the Green City Business Program moves in a new direction, which was announced at a press conference from Fort Wayne Metals at 11 a.m. today.

“This is about building stronger businesses, exploring new economies and protecting our valuable resources for future generations,” said Mayor Tom Henry.

Changing Times in Global Marketplace

To help meet the challenges of sustainable practices needed in the global market, the City of Fort Wayne began the Green City Business program in 2009. The program resulted in more than 90 businesses trained in sustainable methods. Today, several of those trained businesses officially formed the Northeast Indiana Sustainable Business Council, NISBC.

Through the support of Mayor Tom Henry, the group is taking the Green City Business program into a new phase, one that will reach across Northeast Indiana, and even beyond. The now regional program is called Bright Green Business.

"This business group is leading efforts to make our region competitive in the global marketplace. It’s essential that we support their efforts,” said Mayor Henry. “It’s about creating well-paying sustainable jobs, and ultimately reducing costs for businesses as taxpayers,” Mayor Henry said, while adding that the city is also doing its part by incorporating more sustainable practices.

Peer- to-Peer Tailored Sustainability Training

NISBC is a business-to-business network that focuses on sustainable issues in manufacturing, facility management, high performance buildings, and even faith-based organizations.

NISBC’s goal is to help companies improve resource-efficiency in their operations and capitalize on new market opportunities.

This program offers training, certification and education to a regional audience.

The Bright Green Business program, through the NISBC, offers various levels of education. The program offers beginning prescriptive solutions ranging from reducing paper use or energy use to more advanced solutions including closed-loop materials cycles, sustainable product design and new technologies.

Through the network, businesses will also have opportunities to share ideas and surplus materials by means of peer-to-peer networking groups. Members are encouraged to advance over time, but are not required to.

The program will have an annual recertification process.

Business Support Grows Regionally

With continued commitment of the private sector and the City, the NISBC will create a combination of economic development and environmental sustainable opportunities that will assist area business in competing in the global marketplace. It’s already succeeding as 22 businesses from the community of Elkhart, The Sustainability Coalition, have joined NISBC in an effort to achieve even greater success in Sustainability. The advantages of this collaboration are already increasing efficiency and reducing costs.

Founding members of the Northeast Indiana Sustainable Business Council include, A. Hattersly and Sons, Fort Wayne Metals, Hagerman Group, Indiana Tech, Lincoln Financial, Parkview, Rothberg Logan and Warsco, The YMCA of Greater Fort Wayne, Transformations Inc., and Insight Strategic Concepts, Inc. These organizations have committed time, money and countless other resources to this project.

“I hope that all businesses in the area will move forward with this program. It’s critical to their bottom line and the success of our region. What we do today creates a stable foundation for future generations,” said Mayor Henry.

Businesses interested in more information on the Bright Green Business program and the Northeast Indiana Sustainable Business Council should contact Kerri Przemielewski by email at kerri@nisbc.org or by phone at 260-452-4396.

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