Local Collaboration for the Win!
By Mark Peterson It was with great trepidation I listened to the presentation at our last Solid Waste Advisory Committee meeting. The discussion centered around the ramifications of what may come to pass as we looked at the impending closure of a longtime recycling business, NW Recycling. Their representative shared they were calling it quits […]
Waste – Creatively Speaking
By Mark Peterson As we head into what appears to be another tumultuous year for so many aspects of business and our daily lives, the world of solid waste will be no different and won’t be spared the inevitable disruptions we will all face. Lately, I have been reading about the waste trends we may […]
Still Here, Still Resilient
This is where I feel triumphant through the good deeds of our volunteers and exemplary performance of my coworkers. In a time of need where everything seems to be just that much harder, we have found a way to be successful beyond my wildest expectations.
Compost – YIMBY Please!
There is no shortage in the news and in environmental articles around the world that the recycling systems are facing significant challenges. Our recyclers have been working hard to find solutions to the ever-growing amount of feedstock and declining market prices. Thankfully, reducing your organic waste first and then composting what you do have left over is an extremely effective strategy for reducing your overall waste footprint.
By Mark Peterson There is no doubt that bringing back Brad Smith, the speedy Aussie left back, will add even more firepower to the Sounders attack! He was a big piece of the Sounders run on their way to hoisting the 2019 MLS Cup trophy and he will make the team even more dangerous – […]
Compassionate, Collaborative Action
I have been working hard to retrain my brain to accept what is, celebrate what should be celebrated and remain steadfast in my hope. Thankfully, the work that has been my profession over the past two and a half years provides me daily examples of people being good humans, doing what they can to take care of themselves, their families, their friends and their communities large and small.
Food to Bank On
Feeding the Community for 16 Years By Alex Smith January 2020 If you’ve been paying attention for the past 20 years or so, you may have noticed a trend in how people view food. Professional chefs and food critics are increasingly becoming mainstream celebrities, recipe sites and food blogs abound, and you may even have […]
Foxes in the Hen House
By Mark Peterson It is no secret that we are being overrun by the ever increasing amount of plastic that deluges us every day. Just about everything we use in our modern society has some sort of plastic component to it. Even our glass bottle with a metal lid has the plastic tamper proof shrink […]
Ashes to Ashes
In our culture we often shy away from conversations around death and generally don’t talk about it at all, let alone the impacts related to how we end up at our final resting place. In a traditional burial many resources are utilized including reinforced concrete, embalming fluids, steel and hardwoods for caskets and cremation requires fossil fuels. Green burial is part of an ecological restoration and the process and body become a vehicle for restoring a natural ecosystem.
Late to the Party
These and other like-minded businesses found a way to stay true to their values and find success and profit in spite of market forces perpetuated by the very same Business Round Table who now has had a change of heart. How long this change of heart will last, I’m not sure anyone really knows. Shareholders are already starting to revolt.
Pride in Learning
This in turn reinvigorates me in all aspects of the Toward Zero Waste work we do at Sustainable Connections including the stinky and slightly gross waste audits.
Make Your Shot Count!
By Mark Peterson It’s no secret that I get a lot of joy out of the game of soccer. There are so many facets to the “beautiful game” that keep me enthralled as a referee, a soccer parent, and fan. I love the fluidity of the game that flows with relatively few stops in play […]
By Mark Peterson “Wow.” Yes, that is what I said to myself as I have started to reflect a bit more intently on the occurrences of 2018. The turn of the seasons and the holidays ahead provide me an annual opportunity to take stock of the past 12 months and be thankful and enjoy the […]
Making a Meal of It
This past month I had the distinct pleasure of working with multiple groups and stellar individuals to support a community meal, while showcasing the recovered foods and highlighting the businesses supporting the Food Recovery Initiative. Together, around a table at the Van Zandt Community Center, a plan was hatched to test the feasibility of feeding 100 people with recovered foods.
All Scrambled Up!
Honestly, my attitude about leftovers and what to do with them, especially as the third straight day of chili rolled around, hasn’t always been positive. I imagine those stuck in a room with me during this leftover stretch felt the same – hehe.
To help prevent my brain exploding from one more seemingly insurmountable global problem, I am instead reverting to my project management training and thinking in terms of a SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats) analysis. In the middle of the SWOT acronym is Opportunity, and in the case of wasted food, there is tons of opportunity–literally.
Dynamic Duo: Ed and Janet of Boundary Bay Brewery
Janet and Ed of Boundary Bay Brewery are definitely a dynamic duo. They are tireless promoters of what it takes to have a true community, believing – and proving – that mentoring and collaborating creates a culture that’s good for business. They match affable natures with incredibly generous donations of time, product, and space – […]
Commitment to Community: Whatcom Educational Credit Union (WECU)
WECU is not only a leader in banking services, they also strive to support education, health and community concerns through nonprofit donations and volunteerism. They offer many financial education opportunities, free of charge, to promote the financial literacy of residents. In 2013 alone, WECU’s Social Responsibility Committee oversaw the donation of 112 thousand dollars directly […]
Innovative Business Model: Terra Organic and Natural Foods
Terra Organic and Natural Foods meticulous sourcing of products for their store is undeniable. Their enthusiastic support of local food and farming businesses includes taking staff out to visit farms. They boast Whatcom County’s only all-organic produce department. And we have all been made more aware of Genetically Modified foods through the nationally-recognized labeling campaign […]
Committed Collaborator: Caprice Teske of the Bellingham Farmer’s Market
The Bellingham Farmers Market is an amazing gathering place for our community and it is led by a committed collaborator, Caprice. The Market’s dedication to serving its customers and meeting the needs of its vendors is unparalleled. Chef in the Market, the Bellingham Chef’s Collaborative and the Farm to School program build vital bridges between […]
Committed to the community’s health: Faber Construction
Faber Construction was founded by Rick and Debbie Faber in 1987. While originally specializing in agricultural buildings, they have since expanded both in project volume and scope of work. They are now a full service construction company working in both the public and private sectors. Faber is committed to the health of the communities they […]
A Seriously Sustainable Team: Chrysalis Inn and Spa
The Chrysalis was one of the original participants in the Community Energy Challenge back in 2011. Since then they have done a series of measures to save energy in their building. Including installing; high efficiency boilers, water heaters, lighting sensors, and replacing existing lighting with LED bulbs. More recently they have done analysis on saving […]