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Saturday, November 18, 2017

Sustainable Business Forum Supporting the Triple Bottom Line

The mission of the Southwest Michigan Sustainable Business Forum is to promote business practices which demonstrate environmental stewardship, economic vitality, and social responsibility.

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Sustainable Business Forum Suggested Reading Materials

Suggested Reading Materials

Cannibals With Forks, The Triple Bottom Line of the 21st Century Business, by John Elkington
Polish poet Stanislaw Lec asked, "Is it progress if a cannibal uses a fork?" Elkington applies the question to twenty-first-century capitalism and asks are we making progress even if we continue producing goods and services with less impact on the global ecosystem. He offers indispensable reading for astute CEOs preparing to navigate the new agenda of sustainable business practice.

Natural Capitalism: Creating the Next Industrial Revolution, by Paul Hawken, Amory B. Lovins, and L. Hunter Lovins
In Natural Capitalism, three of the foremost strategists on business sustainability show how leading-edge companies are practicing "a new type of industrialism" that is more efficient and profitable while saving the environment and creating jobs. Paul Hawken and Amory and Hunter Lovins write that in the next century, cars will get 200 miles per gallon, manufacturers will practice radical resource efficiencies, and the world's standard of living will jump without increased damage to natural resources. They offer four strategies to begin the next industrial revolution.

Biomimicry: Innovation Inspired by Nature, by Janine M. Benyus
Using a sophisticated interview style with some of the leading practitioners in sustainability, Benyus offers a pro-development approach to the great potential profitability of copying some of nature's time-tested, non-polluting room-temperature manufacturing and computing technologies. She asks what can we learn about design and engineering of products and services by observing the genius of 3.8 billion years of evolutionary knowledge that allows successful species to run on current solar power, using local resources to achieve amazing technological feats?

Cradle to Cradle: Remaking the Way We Make Things, by William McDonough and Michael Braungart
William McDonough and Michael are the type of visionary thinkers who continually challenge conventional wisdom. Many of the ideas in their new book "Cradle to Cradle: remaking the Way We Make Things" are trying to point us in a new direction that embraces a whole lineage of designers such as R. Buckminster Fuller, the inventor of the geodesic dome and the originator of the term, "spaceship earth. Braungart and McDonough are not just speaking to environmental concerns, but the authors advocate designing products so that after their useful lives are over, their components provide either biological nutrients for new products or circulate in a closed loop as technical nutrients, as they say in the book "Waste = Food."
Examples of the principles they advocate in the book are surfacing in organizations as diverse as Ford Motor Company, Herman Miller Inc., Pendleton and the city of Chicago among many others. From buildings that have a net positive energy balance, to roof tops that look like the rolling country side from a birds eye view their designs are helping restore the abundance of nature in ways that improve our quality of life. The authors also walk the talk with the material specification of their book. It is made of a polymer that is waterproof, and can be "upcycled", as an industrial nutrient and made into a high quality polymer. Anyone who truly cares about the future we leave for "all the children of all the species" should read Cradle to Cradle.

Mid-Course Correction: Toward a Sustainable Enterprise: The Interface Model, by Ray Anderson
Mid-Course Correction is a business book about the environment that is written from the personal perspective of a CEO. Ray Anderson, Founder, Chairman and CEO of one of the world's largest interior furnishings companies, Atlanta-based Interface, Inc recounts his awakening to the importance of environmental issues and outlines the steps his petroleum-dependent company is taking in its quest to become a sustainable enterprise. His vision is that Interface will become the first major manufacturer that will never have to take another drop of oil from the Earth to produce and deliver its products. Anderson provides a passionate, thoughtful, personal story that is told from the heart.

Ecology of Commerce: A Declaration of Sustainability, by Paul Hawken
Paul Hawken, the entrepreneur that led the Smith & Hawken gardening supplies empire, is no ordinary capitalist. Drawing such varied visionaries as Baba Ram Dass, Vaclav Havel, Peter Drucker and WalMart for his inspiration, Hawken is one of the original advocates to suggest that businesses are our best hope to reform our economic system to become more environmentally sustainable. He calls for the developed nations to reduce their consumption of energy and resources by 80 percent in the next 50 years.

Financing Change: The Financial Community, Eco-Efficiency, and Sustainable Development, by Stephen Schmidheiny, Frederico J.L. Zorraquin, World Business Council On Sustainable Development
Prominent international industrialist Stephan Schmidheiny, is the co-author of the influential book, Changing Course: A Global Business Perspective on Development and the Environment, and one of the founders of the World Business Council on Sustainable Development. In this book he joins Argentinean business leader Federico J. L. Zorraquín and the other 123 members of the Council in taking a close look at whether the workings of financial markets (stocks, bonds, banks, and insurance companies) do, or should, support sustainable development.

In Earth's Company: Business, Environment, and the Challenge of Sustainability, by Carl Frankel
Carl Frankel asks, "How deep is the corporate commitment to the environment? And what changes in corporate strategy and policy are necessary in the journey to sustainability?" He offers clear and straight forward insight as he gathers the pieces of the puzzle together into a single, comprehensive book that is easy to read and understand the most important sustainability concepts for business leaders.

The Natural Step for Business: Wealth, Ecology and the Evolutionary Corporation, by Brian Nattrass & Mary Altomare
The Natural Step is a framework for sustainability developed by Karl-Henrik Robe'rt, a Swedish oncologist concerned about the health effects of environmental pollution on his patients. He founded an international movement called The Natural Step that outlines the four irreducible scientific principles that define sustainability. The Natural Step for Business offers practical examples of how companies have successfully integrated these principles into their strategic plans and on the shop floor.

Capitalism at the Crossroads : The Unlimited Business Opportunities in Solving the World's Most Difficult Problems
(Hardcover) by Stuart L. Hart

In Capitalism at the Crossroads, Hart shows companies how to identify sustainable products that can drive new growth as they also help solve today's most crucial social problems. Drawing on his experience consulting with top companies and NGOs worldwide, Hart shows how to integrate new technology to deliver profitable solutions that reduce poverty and protect the environment at the same time. Along the way, you'll learn how to become truly indigenous to all your markets-and avoid the pitfalls of traditional "greening" and "sustainability" strategies.

This book transcends yesterday's stale debates about globalization, pointing the way toward a capitalism that's more inclusive, more welcome, and far more successful. But great ideas aren't enough. Hart presents on-the-ground techniques for transforming them into reality, helping leaders re-ignite innovation, growth, and profitability in their own businesses, starting today.
Green to Gold, by Andrew Winston
This best-selling book that shows what works-- and what doesn't -- when companies go green.


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