Monday, April 28, 2014

Interview with Kids for Climate Action- Kate

This week, we spoke with Kate from Kids for Climate Action! This is our interview with her.

Tell us about your company
It is called Kids for Climate Action
-It is a youth organization that promotes sustainability
-An outreach to youth through politics, lobbying, etc.

An example of this is the 2013 provincial election campaign, where Kids for Climate Action promoted sustainability
-Tried to make climate change a bigger issue with political parties
-Getting more youth to vote
-They are currently working to bring awareness to the coal exports that are coming into British Columbia

When did this organization start?
-Started by Sophie Harrison in 2010 at the Copenhagen, conference summit
-Founded to engage youth
-This has escalated to where it is today in modern day
-There are 500 people following on Facebook, more on Twitter
-Thousands on the email list

Advice to join this non-profit
-Follow on Facebook and Twitter
-Volunteer opportunities get posted on there
-More of a high school group
-Not many college students but they can be advisers

What does sustainability mean to you?
-Grade 9- took an environmental studies course
-Wanted to make a further impact than just changing light bulbs

Do you see future in sustainability?
-Yes! Youth are becoming more empathetic
-Youth are really starting to care

Special thanks to Kate for taking part in this interview!

Friday, April 18, 2014

Interview with Hemlock Printers- Richard

We recently spoke with Richard from Hemlock Printers. This is our interview with him.

Tell us about your company
-          We are based in Burnaby and have been operating for 46 years
-          Our location is primarily in the Lower Mainland but we do have offices in Victoria
-          We also have locations along the Western United States (San Francisco, Seattle, etc) that account for a third of our sales
-          All businesses are in commercial printing
-          Founded by Richard’s father in 1968. It is a family business

What are some popular sustainable products and services that your company has?
-Within the last 8 years, there have been more sustainable products
-Started in sustainable/recycled papers
-Over time, grown our paper industry. 10% to 100% post-consumer content
-Paper side is big with sustainability
-Last 5 years, did carbon footprinting
-Did a full life cycle
-Got clients more involved with sustainability

What is your competition like?
-Lots of competition
-Lots of options for clients makes it difficult
-Environmental conscience provides an additional take and potential advantage to the company
-Have a good service model
-Adapted technology to get a step over the competition

What does sustainability mean to you?
-Looking at the reality of our lives on this planet
-Need to ensure health on life on earth
-Bring new products, services and stay innovative for sustainability
-Corporations and businesses should step up in the sustainability department
-Sustainability is also important for innovation going forward
-Very important for youth to get involved

What is some advice for youth who are looking to go into a similar field?
-Think independently and learn to apply your skills
-Be very open and honest with people
-Enjoy what they do
-Set short and long term goals for oneself

How does one go about working at Hemlock?
-Hemlock does have interns/new employees
-Generally come from Ryerson or BCIT
-Students can look for internships online or on job boards at school
-More of a specialization than a general degree.

Thanks to Richard for taking part in this interview!

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Interview with Green Chair Recycling- Liliana and Nikki

We recently spoke with Liliana and Nikki of Green Chair Recycling. This is our interview with them.

Tell us a bit about your company?
-We are a for profit social enterprise
- We do recycling for such things as community events
-We also do consulting
-We take recycling to facilities and provide the events with a full report, and recycling after event.
-We have 100 different stations at these events and volunteers at each one

-We focus on four different aspects of waste management
1) Weigh all materials
2) Get feedback
3) send a report
4) waste audit
-We do this to give companies feedback on how much they use and recycle at events.

So you have volunteers? Tell us more about them?
-There is a community of volunteers at this company
-Teach volunteers, it’s spread through word-of-mouth
-All ethnicities are allowed to volunteer and all people who speak various languages are allowed as well.

So you said you are a for-profit social enterprise? Where do most of your profits come from?
-Most money is made from consulting of family businesses, other businesses, and municipalities industries
-This is mostly an educational support on recycling and more of a focus on residents in society
-There are outreach programs as well for free. This is to give back to the community (colleges, universities, conferences, etc) on how to achieve sustainability.

When did you guys start?
-In 2009

Is there any competition?
-No direct competition
-Do hire on contract

How do I get into a similar field?
-be passionate
-get community involved
-bring change, use sustainability
-don’t only worry about money

How do I join?
-volunteering, website, internships
-show drive and passion
-”stand out” from the crowd
-passion more important than education

What does sustainability mean to you?
Nikki:  Living in a way so future generations will enjoy same luxuries as today
Liliana- All about community (doing the right thing)

Is the green economy growing? 
-ones who participate, will get noticed
-need overall balance in life

Closing comments
-this industry needs to be seen to believed
-need to experience it
-do the right thing for you and be passionate in whatever you do!

Thanks to Liliana and Nikki for taking part in this interview!