On Wednesday, June 29th, Net Impact Sacramento's Professional Chapter gathered at the Hot Italian in Midtown to discuss their sustainability initiatives and partnership with the Green Restaurants Alliance Sacramento(GRAS). The meeting kicked off with a brief discussion of Net Impact’s mission and a quick round of introductions.
Shortly thereafter, one of the Hot Italian’s Cofounders, Andrea Lepore joined us for a 30 minute round-table discussion that centered around the restaurant’s history and how sustainability came to be one of their core values. Members were educated on what it takes to start a successful restaurant while pursuing LEED certification. It also became apparent that the reasons for doing so need to be genuine for them to be sustainable. From installing bike racks outside their facility, to forming innovative partnerships with other local groups (GRAS), or simply pioneering a smaller and less material intensive pizza box, The Hot Italian has truly gone above and beyond in demonstrating their commitment to sustainable business. Members were also able to get a brief a glimpse into some of Andreas plans for the future.
Also present was GRAS founder David Baker. During the roundtable, Andrea and David talked about how they met and how the composting program began. David plays an integral role in helping The Hot Italian divert their food-waste/organics from landfill via a GRAS managed composter located outside the restaurant. The unit is odor free and has the capacity to handle not only the Hot Italian’s food-waste, but also food waste from other local restaurants. David’s vision for GRAS was born during his tenure at Sellands Family Restaurants in East Sacramento. It has since grown to encompass numerous businesses around the Sacramento area. After the tour was completed, members returned to the restaurant and carried on with conversations that had taken place earlier in the evening.
Our chapter is excited to continue offering unique opportunities like this for our members to learn, while sharing best practices from some of the regions most forward thinking organizations. Our next event is going to take place at the end of August, so stay tuned! We will post information on facebook and meetup along with our website. If you have questions about how to get involved or simply want to learn more, please don’t hesitate to reach out ---> email@example.com
Net Impact Sacramento
The following is a guest article by Jon LeSage, editor and publisher of Green Auto Market. He’s passionate about – obsessed! – with this burgeoning global industry that has huge geopolitical, environmental, energy, and economic issues hovering around it. More info on the topic can be found here ---> http://greenautomarket.com/
Tesla Motors had its third Model S fire in six weeks on Wednesday, Nov. 6, near Smyrna, Tenn. It's been a stunning blow to the upstart luxury, high-performance electric carmaker as the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has issued a recall of the Model for inspections; the crisis has illustrated the difficulties of bringing a new technology to market and of succeeding in the auto industry.
It’s still too early to gauge whether these fire incidents are anywhere near the troubles Fisker Automotive has experienced. The driver of the third Model S fire has been defending Tesla, and the incidents’ stats are much better than the overall vehicle marketplace on the safety front. Tesla is being carefully watched by observers to see how the automaker handles the safety, reliability, and public perception challenges.
The Tennessee Highway Patrol said that the 2013 Model S ran over a tow hitch on Interstate 24 that hit the undercarriage of the vehicle, causing an electric fire. The driver, Dr. Juris Shibayama, was impressed with how it all turned out and plans to buy another one of Tesla’s electric vehicles. “I am thankful to God that I was totally uninjured in any way from this impact. Had I not been in a Tesla, that object could have punched through the floor and caused me serious harm,” Shibayama wrote in a letter that was sent out in an email by Tesla.
The first of the three fires took place on October 1 in Kent, Wash, near Seattle. The Model S is said to have run over a piece of road debris described as a “curved section that fell off a semi-trailer.” Tesla said that it punched a three-inch hole through the quarter-inch-thick armor plate protecting the pack and had a force of 25 tons. The Model S alerted the driver, and he pulled over and safely exited the car. The second fire took place on October 18 in Mérida, a city in Mexico’s Yucatán region. A drunk driver jumped a curb in the Model S, took out part of a concrete wall and hit a tree. This driver was also satisfied with the safety of the car and wants to have his replacement Model S delivered promptly.
Tesla did receive a top NHTSA safety rating for the Model S this year, and accolades also came in from Consumer Reports and car review publications. Thousands of cars crash and burn every year in the US – fires in Tesla’s electric cars are much less common than in those powered by gasoline and diesel; but timing does play a huge part in the stock price of a company and perceived value of a product. There have been over 19,000 units sold so far for the Model S; while the three fires probably don’t set up a ratio that should raise red flags over the electric car’s safety, having these incidents happen so close together does create quite a perceptual challenge for the automaker.
Tesla Motors is now under a spotlight similar to what the Chevrolet Volt and Fisker Karma and its A123 lithium ion battery pack have been through. Li-ion batteries are commonplace in smartphones and laptops, but are still fairly new to cars. While Toyota and Daimler are impressed enough with Tesla’s battery-powered electric motor to place them in their own EVs, the new technology is quite vulnerable to safety and reliability issues.
Investors have also been quite enamored with Tesla CEO Elon Musk and Tesla shares, which have peaked and plummeted this year. In May, Tesla stock (TSLA) was at about $76 per share; it reached a peak of $193.37 in late September and closed on Friday, Nov. 22, at $121.38. Musk has become something of a media icon this year, leading Tesla along with the SpaceX commercial space travel company and the Hyperloop 800 mile-per-hour train concept. So far, Musk and Tesla executives have been very shrewd about how they’ve responded to the crashes, but the company is at a pivotal juncture for its future.
Jon LeSage is a member of Net Impact’s Los Angeles chapter. He’s the editor and publisher of the weekly Green Auto Market and serves as Automotive Editor, Green Initiatives at Automotive Digest.
The founder of Tom’s Shoes was sure to have an interesting story; that much was certain. However, I just wasn’t expecting to laugh as much as I did. Mr. Mycoskie really put together a great storyline and made you feel like you were right there with him from the beginning.
Tom’s is best known for its “One for One” business model which delivers a pair of new shoes to a child in need for every pair purchased. Essentially they are blending their “for profit” motives with a charitable twist.
This model is beginning to gather strength and has been adopted by several other leaders, including; Sleep With a Purpose founded by Josh Helland and Soap Box Soap founded by David Sminick. I was able to share a few words with Josh at the 2012 conference in Baltimore while David and I caught up in San Jose last week. It should come as no surprise that both gentlemen were also very genuine and forthcoming in sharing stories about their business ventures.
All three of these companies are finding ways to spread the wealth, while still maintaining profitability. This is by no means the only indicator of a socially responsible company, but it certainly helps.
The remainder of this post will focus on Tom’s story, but stay tuned for a blog on David and Josh in the future. I will now attempt to summarize one of the most memorable and humorous moments from his presentation.
Tom and three dedicated interns have manufactured their very first 250 pairs of shoes. Word soon got out and Tom's Shoes was featured in the LA Times, which resulted in the entire inventory selling out almost immediately.
While working tirelessly in a run-down garage in South America, Tom's cell phone rings and the recipient on the other end is adamant about placing a fairly large order.
It just so happens that this interested party is Nordstroms and they are demanding 2200 pairs of shoes ASAP. Tom attempts to explain how the inventory is already sold out and the order can’t be fulfilled in the timeframe specified.
Shortly thereafter, the Norstrom buyer loses his patience, “Listen buddy, do you know who this is? CUT someone else’s order and get us our shoes! Or else put me on with your corporate sales manager!
Tom’s three other employees, who also happened to be newly-hired interns, were sitting across from him listening to the whole thing. With a huge grin on her face, one intern motions for him to toss over the cell phone. After role-playing as the “Corporate Sales Manager of Tom’s Shoes”, the savvy intern brings peace to the situation and it’s fair to say the rest is history.
1. This company is pretty great and you should buy a pair of Tom's Shoes.
2. Making the audience laugh makes for a much more entertaining and engaging presentation.
3. Don’t &#$@% around with Nordstroms.
Please comment below if you’ve got any “One for One” ideas of your own.
It was 6:00 in the evening and I’d just finished trekking the last leg of my journey from Baltimore International Airport to the hotel where I’d be spending the next couple days. A 15-minute walk from public transit landed me at the entrance to my hotel where I wasted no time getting checked in.
While waiting for the elevator, a middle-aged man hustled through the doors just as they were about to close. He had a brown paper bag under his arm and looked as if he’d also been battling the humid Baltimore air. After seeing me glance at the bag with a curious expression, he pulled out a salad and said he’d just run out to grab some dinner before calling it a night. Then, with a friendly smile on his face, he asked me if I was here for the conference.
I told him I was and explained how I became involved before asking if he was also here for the conference. To my surprise, he casually said that he started Net Impact nearly 20 years ago. It took me a second to register what he’d said, so I re-iterated his words, “you started Net Impact?!?”
He laughed, introduced himself as Mark and continued to tell me how it all started. Meeting Mr. Albion on the elevator was an unexpected surprise and I knew it was an indication of what to expect over the next few days.
After getting settled in my room, I decided to do a little more research on the discussion that took place in the elevator minutes earlier and here’s what I found…https://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=554442261117
After watching this video, I sat in deep thought for a moment and was glad to be in the presence of so many people who shared this philosophy.
We could all afford to learn a thing or two from this insightful clip. If you appreciated the video, please share it with your friends/family.
Hopefully, this is enough to draw you out of hibernation for Net Impact’s conference, which is conveniently held in San Jose next October (at-least for us California folks). If not, I hope you enjoyed it anyways.
The following creation is the first of its kind and breathes new meaning into the common phrase; “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle”.
Recycling is a global phenomenon; nearly 80% of retailers and grocers are recycling their cardboard. However, that still leaves 20% unaccounted for and thus opportunity for improvement.
What if I told you that making the extra effort to recycle your cardboard box was more than just “a good thing to do”. What if I told you that simple act would generate an “ear to ear” grin on some youngsters face when he discovers a shiny new bike under the tree on Christmas morning. Well… hopefully you would say, “wow! I had no idea.”
Enter the cardboard bike, courtesy of Izhar Gafni, creator of the Alfa bicycle. Cardboard is made from wood pulp and was invented back in the 1800’s as a means of shipping valuable objects. However, Izhar has taken this simple raw material and transformed it into something much greater.
Let’s explore a few of the reasons why this invention is one that can benefit society in numerous ways as we move forward into the 21st century.
Economical – At $20 a pop, this is extremely feasible for most folks considering the cost of an alternative. This is roughly the price of a new t-shirt or a couple of deli sandwiches. The low price-point can help expedite its dissemination into the marketplace on a larger scale and spur the growth of emission free transportation.
Eco-Conscious – It’s also supporting and encouraging a lifestyle that is sustainable over the long-term not only for the rider, but also the earth itself. It’s turning a low value recycled material into a high value consumer good. This forces us to re-evaluate the typical life-cycle of scrap materials and ultimately realize their potential value.
Sturdy – After four years of tinkering and experimentation, Izhar was finally able to solve a complex equation that would allow him to exclude any metal/plastic reinforced fittings on the bike. In addition to being made-to-ride with 100% cardboard, the bike is also fireproof and waterproof.
Attractive – The bike has a sleek and streamlined look that is on par with most bikes you’d find at the bike shop. In fact, it looks more like something you’d find on the velodrome (racing track).
Healthy – Biking is a healthy cardiovascular activity that promotes longevity in humans and this creation supports that effort.
We’ve all heard about how great it is to recycle, in fact it is far superior to the alternative of shipping off to a landfill where it will be buried and forgotten. However, people often overlook the fact that reusing or up-cycling is a much more desirable solution.
When Izhar’s bike hits the shelf I will be one of his first customers.
I’ll plan to check back once I log some miles on this sleek mass of paper pulp.
Stay tuned for Alfa Part II.
Invites you to join us for a Mixer at the Blue Cue in downtown Sacramento
as we launch our first event of the 2013!
Monday July 29th
6:30 – 7:30 PM
1004 28th St.
Sacramento, CA 95816
Who are we? What are our goals? Where do we come from? What do we do? What’s Net Impact? What’s a professional chapter?
We will let you know on July 29th. However, those of you who just can’t wait are encouraged to check out our site … http://www.netimpactsacramento.org
Who should come?
Anyone interested in making a positive social and environmental impact in the Greater Sacramento Area.
We are excited to depart on this incredible journey and encourage you to join us as we forge our way to a brighter future.
SEE YOU THERE!!
Quote of the month
Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.
~Ralph Waldo Emerson