Sustainability101 Blog

21 Nov 2018

Effective January 1, 2019 businesses, nonprofits and agencies can no longer sell or use any expanded polystyrene (EPS) foam items, such as single-service items like cups, bowls, plates, takeout containers, and trays or loose fill packaging, aka “packing peanuts”.  See exceptions to…  Continue Reading...

27 Sep 2018

Is it time for your business to take carbon footprint accounting and reporting seriously? Many small and medium-sized businesses have yet to calculate their impacts and risks. If you know your businesses’ carbon footprint, chances are you work for a Fortune…  Continue Reading...

19 Sep 2018

Are you in compliance? New York City businesses are required by law to separate their organic waste. Hotels and other businesses in the hospitality industry are most likely to be affected. In NYC, we’ve reported that inspections are up and that…  Continue Reading...

12 Sep 2018

In April 2018, it was announced that over 100 projects had been certified under the TRUE Zero Waste rating system by the GBCI, the same credentialing body that administers LEED. These projects reported up to $6.5 million in savings and…  Continue Reading...

1 Aug 2018

Dallas’ new Multifamily Recycling Ordinance mandates recycling for apartment complexes  with 8 or more units by Jan. 2020. Over 90% of the city’s apartment complexes have at least 50 units. This means that the majority of Dallas  apartment building owners and…  Continue Reading...

1 Aug 2018

On July 26, 2018, the Metro Council, the regional governing body for Portland, voted to put a new commercial organics ordinance in place. Establishments that generate 1,000 pounds or more of organics per week must comply by March 2020 Generators…  Continue Reading...

16 Jul 2018

China Ban Summary:  A brief history: The China ban began in 2013 as the “Green Fence” policy, which stopped the flow of low quality recyclables at the Chinese border. This was followed in 2016 by their “National Sword” campaign, which continued…  Continue Reading...

27 Jun 2018

NYC Benchmarking updates: LL84 (2009) deadline approaching Earlier this year, we reported that due to a glitch in data provided by utilities, New York City pushed back the deadline for LL84 (2009) benchmarking data filing for 2017 from May 1 to December…  Continue Reading...

27 Jun 2018

Q: What is the estimated temperature difference between a standard and cool roof? Is it: a) 10 degrees F b) 30degrees F c) 50 degrees F WATCH the 18-sec VIDEO answer from Great Forest CEO Ross Guberman Q: If all…  Continue Reading...

27 Jun 2018

Congratulations to Great Forest President Richard Fuller on being awarded the prestigious  Order of Australia Medal for his service to conservation and the environment. It is a well-deserved recognition for his work with Pure Earth, the nonprofit he founded, the…  Continue Reading...

20 Jun 2018

July 2018 ENERGY STAR will be re-calculating almost all commercial building scores this summer, which will impact your properties’ standing.  All the changes in source data will result in lower scores generally across the US. ALL scores will adjust as of August…  Continue Reading...

25 May 2018

Hotel inspections are up in New York City. Violations are being issued for non-compliance. That is what we are hearing and seeing, following the expansion of regulations covering recycling and organics in the city. In some cases, such as with “persistent violators,” ballooning fines…  Continue Reading...

25 May 2018

Late last year, we received an email from one of our hotel clients that began: “FYI. The DSNY were here today.” Since the expansion of regulations covering commercial recycling and organics, the DSNY has been stepping up checks on hotels…  Continue Reading...

25 May 2018

“Businesses that respond appropriately can lead the way before they are forced to comply with bans and regulations. This is not only good for the environment, it is also good for business.” As reported in the New York Times, the…  Continue Reading...

23 May 2018

Q: Can I recycle plastic bags? A: This is a question we get asked very often.  From the bags you get with your shopping to the plastic bags, wrap and film that encase many of the items you buy. It is…  Continue Reading...

27 Apr 2018

While New York mulls a ban on single-use plastic bags, San Francisco just took another step forward.  Now in the West Coast city, which already has a bag ban in place, it is possible to recycle plastic bags and other clean,…  Continue Reading...

20 Mar 2018

Diversion initiatives such as recycling and composting mandates are popping up across the country as more and more local governments start to realize the value of zero waste. This is just the beginning. Once cities begin to ramp up their zero…  Continue Reading...

27 Feb 2018

Assess the efficiency of your waste and recycling program with just one look? Yes, it is possible. You can get an idea of what is happening by just glancing around you. Is your waste and recycling program optimized? Is it running…  Continue Reading...

22 Feb 2018

The future of office waste management is here, and it is simpler than you think. This white paper shows how you can optimize your waste and recycling program, and achieve multiple benefits, with one simple change — switching to a centralized…  Continue Reading...

18 Jan 2018

The Environmental Defense Fund’s (EDF) Climate Corps is a terrific program that places trained fellows on staff at businesses over the summer to help jump start clean energy projects. Great Forest worked with EDF fellows on two projects last year with…  Continue Reading...

10 Jan 2018

As we begin 2018, let’s look back on some highlights that made the news last year to see how it will affect your business this year.  Let’s continue doing great things together! 1) TRUE Zero Waste  In September 2017, the…  Continue Reading...

20 Dec 2017

Did you know a portion of Great Forest’s profits support cleanup work in some of the world’s worst polluted places?  We do this through the nonprofit Pure Earth, founded by Great Forest President Richard Fuller. And this year we joined…  Continue Reading...

20 Dec 2017

Did you know Americans throw out 25% more waste during the holidays? Think of all the packaging, gift wrap, food and more that end up in our waste bins. The Ohio EPA has some great infographics and tips on how to…  Continue Reading...

29 Nov 2017

Microgrants for food waste reduction DSNY’s Foundation for New York’s Strongest has launched a Microgrant program to help NYC businesses take action to address food waste. Grants are worth up to $15,000 in funding and technical support. Applications are due Jan. 8, 2018. Grants…  Continue Reading...

8 Nov 2017

How do you increase recycling and lower costs? By making recycling simple and convenient… at least that is the idea behind single-stream recycling’s popularity.  But the reality is more complicated. The number of communities and cities using single-stream recycling has reportedly increased from 20 to…  Continue Reading...

8 Nov 2017

First published Nov. 2017.   After a year of collaboration among architects and New York waste professionals (including Great Forest), AIANY/Center for Architecture has launched their Zero Waste Design Guidelines to encourage building design that facilitates recycling and waste diversion.…  Continue Reading...

8 Nov 2017

Education and learning is a big part of what we do at Great Forest. This is part of the formula for success at every business we work with. Recently, David Troust, Great Forest’s V.P. of business development, was part of…  Continue Reading...

30 Oct 2017

If you live and work in this world, this open letter is addressed to YOU.  The open letter–It is time to put pollution on the map–is an urgent plea from Richard Fuller, President of the nonprofit Pure Earth (and Great Forest), and Dr. Philip Landrigran,…  Continue Reading...

30 Oct 2017

Great Forest President Richard Fuller, in his capacity as President of the nonprofit Pure Earth, joined former EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy, former President of Mexico Carlos Salinas, and other leaders and experts on October 23 for the launch of The Lancet Commission…  Continue Reading...

27 Sep 2017

It is one of NYC’s most talked-about new developments with over 750,000 sq. ft of mixed-use commercial/industrial space. Following a waste audit investigation, Great Forest identified key problems with the waste and recycling program at one of its buildings. This flaw was preventing the…  Continue Reading...

27 Sep 2017

  Sept., 2017. Last month, Washington, D.C. became the first city in the world to receive a LEED for Cities Platinum leadership certification, the highest award bestowed upon cities by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC). D.C. has 120 LEED-certified…  Continue Reading...

24 Sep 2017

Going zero waste is a very achievable goal for businesses, despite misconceptions. And with the cost of waste removal rising over the past decade, moving  towards zero waste is increasingly becoming the only long term strategy for effective waste management.  One study…  Continue Reading...

24 Sep 2017

What Is A Zero Waste Business? A lack of clarity about what zero waste really means may be keeping some businesses from reaping the benefits of going zero waste. Is zero waste the same thing as “zero waste to landfill”?…  Continue Reading...

16 Aug 2017

We’re glad to announce the return of the HANYC Sustainability Awards with a new venue and date. This year, winners of the fourth annual HANYC Sustainability Awards will be announced and celebrated on Monday, April 23, 2018 at the Second Annual…  Continue Reading...

16 Aug 2017

Using comprehensive waste audits, Great Forest recently helped a global consumer products brand uncover a breakdown in their waste and recycling program that kept its operation from running at optimum level. Our investigation also revealed a sizable revenue stream they…  Continue Reading...

9 Aug 2017

What is in your trash? A Great Forest study based on 100 commercial waste audits revealed that 77% of what is usually thrown out as trash is NOT trash at all but recyclable materials.  Continue Reading...

4 Aug 2017

REBNY (Real Estate Board of New York) President John Banks recently reached out to the industry about New York City’s updated commercial waste and recycling laws, which began enforcement on August 1, 2017. As the city with the biggest concentration…  Continue Reading...

19 Jul 2017

Attention all NYC businesses. The warning period is over. Commercial waste and recycling law enforcement is underway. Are you ready? What should you do to be in compliance and avoid fines? Read our  Q&A On New Waste And Recycling Rules – What…  Continue Reading...

12 Jul 2017

Did you take part in Daylight Hour 2017? This year, Great Forest joined clients and more than 820 offices around the world, turning off the lights in about 100 million square feet of office space, saving enough energy to power 9,400…  Continue Reading...

21 Jun 2017

Great Forest attended the Waste Expo in New Orleans in May to discuss trends with industry experts and get a peek into new innovations in the field. The event drew over 12,000 participants and 620 exhibitors. Here is our quick…  Continue Reading...

21 Jun 2017

This could be the summer of reckoning. Americans just learned that the U.S. is turning its back on the Paris Agreement. With that at the back of our minds, Great Forest team members from across the country gathered recently in Pennsylvania to…  Continue Reading...

13 Jun 2017

NYC hotels are being fined.  Now help is on its way. Join us for the upcoming HANYC Waste Management Seminar on June 29, organized by the Hotel Association of NYC with support from Great Forest. The event was organized quickly…  Continue Reading...

12 Jun 2017

We are thrilled to receive the Daylight Hour 2017 “Gear Head” award for best monitoring and analysis, as documented in our case study, which is also featured at the Building Energy Exchange. Thanks to the creative folks behind the annual Daylight…  Continue Reading...

5 May 2017

The music will go on, at least for two baby grand pianos past their prime. The instruments came from the Grand Ballroom of the Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco. Rather than disposing of the old pianos, the hotel worked with Great…  Continue Reading...

5 May 2017

Great Forest will be in New Orleans for the WasteExpo, a key annual gathering of waste industry experts.  If you are attending, look for us.  We will be meeting with vendors and talking to industry insiders to keep you in the…  Continue Reading...

4 May 2017

Read the press release See the case study for details After a successful pilot, Great Forest launched an innovative program in the Mid-Atlantic region to take waste management to the next level. Now we are proud to reveal the results. Working with…  Continue Reading...

5 Apr 2017

Great Forest founder Richard Fuller’s nonprofit Pure Earth has partnered with supermodel Molly Bair and over 20 leading jewelry designers to curate a special collection of jewelry crafted using recycled, Fairtrade, or mercury-free gold for auction.   “Consumers have probably…  Continue Reading...

5 Apr 2017

This  year, Earth Hour fell on a weekend! Nevertheless, we heard from clients around the country who went dark for at least an hour.  The action is a great reminder, as we approach Earth Day, that we all need to renew…  Continue Reading...

3 Apr 2017

Accurate metrics is key to a successful waste and recycling program.  It helps you evaluate the effectiveness of your efforts, and determine if changes are needed. The numbers also inform your overall sustainability reporting and affect your goals. But what…  Continue Reading...

3 Apr 2017

With regulations targeting organics on the rise nationwide, a new online resource backed by the USDA, EPA, and other partners, aims to gather relevant material together in one place to make it easier for businesses and organizations looking for information and…  Continue Reading...

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