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Sustainability: Not just for the environmentally conscious elite

In a city still buzzing about the new President-elect and the Tuesday night rally that took place just down the street at Grant Park, attendees of the Sustain08 Plastics Business Summit (www.sustain08.com) in Chicago are looking toward a greener future. The resounding message is that sustainability is no longer a choice solely for the environmentally conscious elite, but that it will soon be a requirement for all parts of the manufacturing supply chain.

) in Chicago are looking toward a greener future. The resounding message is that sustainability is no longer a choice solely for the environmentally conscious elite, but that it will soon be a requirement for all parts of the manufacturing supply chain. And those companies looking to be ahead of the projected upcoming mandates will be much better off in the long run. Every speaker shared not only his expertise on how his company has moved towards sustainability, but also his personal reasons for such a shift to help preserve our planet for future generations. And most speakers also mentioned that it should be a priority “because it’s the right thing to do,” and that it can also be very profitable to your business.

The conference started with Andrew Winston, coauthor of bestseller “Green to Gold,” who brought new relevance to the very old quote, “If not us, then who? If not now, then when?” In addition to the information that will soon be posted on the Sustain08 website, we’ll be covering the expert advice given by the speakers at plasticstoday.com, including perspectives from sustainability consultants, green designers, packaging professionals, and experts from every part of the supply chain. Since sustainability will become an increasingly important topic to members of the plastics industry and its customers, look for coverage throughout the year in Injection Molding Magazine and Modern Plastics Worldwide.

I caught up with Bill Carteaux, president of Sustain 08 sponsor Society of the Plastics Industry (www.plasticsindustry.org), and his outlook on the election results was favorable. With a core of a dozen moderate Democrats in the Senate and a belief that the new President-elect will help to get both sides to work together, things are looking up for future manufacturing legislation. The SPI has been speaking with Obama advisors for the past six weeks and has plans to attend inaugural events, so the concerns of the plastics industry will be heard.

To hear about the future of plastics straight from Carteaux, the SPI will be hosting a webinar on the state of the U.S. plastics industry next Tuesday, Nov. 18 at 11:00 a.m. EST, followed by a Q&A with Carteaux and Neil Pratt, SPI’s senior director of international trade. Contact Barry Eisenberg, SPI’s director of marketing and communications to register at (202) 974-5210 or [email protected]. If you’re unable to listen to the Web conference, we’ll keep you posted at plasticstoday.com.—[email protected]

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