It should go without saying that most area small businesses don’t have the wallets to “go green” on a whim. Simply changing the light bulbs is one thing, but installing solar roofs, localizing product lines, composting food waste and using alternative means of transportation are quite another.
That’s why Webster University and the Louisville-based Sustainable Business Networks are trying to help connect the dots, because reinventing the wheel is, well, unnecessary. They’re holding a conference Monday to help Louisville businesses and nonprofits interested in going green connect with other businesses already green or, in most cases, employing one or two green elements that can be swapped and shared.
The hope, organizer David Silverman said, is to foster interconnectedness among local business, to create what he calls a “sustainable ecology” of services all geared toward environmental stewardship in the business community.
“We’re pulling together folks from a variety of businesses and sectors essentially to say, hey, here is the green business sector, the local business sector, and that in itself counts, not just alternative energy or solar or whatever,” Silverman said.
Panelists include Gary Heine of Heine Brothers Coffee, which sells only fair trade and organic coffee and manages a large-scale composting operation; Mary Clark of Rainbow Blossom; James Linton of Expressions of You coffeehouse; Jim Shields of Commonwealth Computer Recycling; Emma Kuhl of the Green Building Council; and a representative of the local business association Keep Louisville Weird, which Silverman hopes can help lead a charge to make Louisville green.
Things get started at 11:45 a.m. Monday and will also include consumer education about how to buy green. Call 896-1835 to reserve a spot (the conference is free) or visit www.sustainablelouisville.net for more info. —Stephen George
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