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Conference blends green with business

by Archives March 11, 2008

This year’s sustainable business conference (SBC) is offering entrepreneurs a chance to be on the forefront of green trends in business practices.
The conference will be held this Friday at the Hall Building and coordinator Lauren Scott said this year’s ideas will go beyond the conference. “It’s a great way to combine business leaders and students and show what work is being done and the strategies that are being used to work around issues caused by making a business more sustainable to the environment. We want to offer students a resource that will go year round,” she said.
The theme this year is “Food for Thought.”
“You can look at the environment aspects in the food industry,” said Scott, “and it’s going green, genetically modified, and buying local.”
Rob Clarke, the executive director of the Non Governmental Organization Transfair Canada, will be a speaker. His company assigns a “Fair Trade Certification” to products he can prove have been ethically produced. For example, companies who have provided their employees with adequate salaries, improved working conditions and other options, receive certification.
Other topics include the genetic engineering of crops known as “Genetically Modified Organisms” (GMO). GMO’s hold the potential to improve crop yield.
What is different this year is that there are plans to expand the SBC to create a longer-term project. Scott said there have been talks with the dean of the John Molson School of Business to start implementing changes at the academic levels. “Any mention of green initiatives are mentioned in the last paragraph,” she said.

SBC job resource

The SBC will soon officially be recognized as the John Molson Sustainable Business Group, a committee under the Commerce and Administration Students Association (CASA) and the Commerce Graduate Students Association (CGSA) umbrellas.
With affiliation to CASA, the committee could potentially use the help of the career Management Services (CMS), offering JMSB students a new “green job” bank and internships in companies that have integrated sustainability aspects.
“What helps them the most is they get access to more of our resources,” said Josh Redler, VP human resources at CASA.
The SBC will take place in the D.B. Clarke Theatre in the Hall Building. CTV’s green reporter Cindy Sherwin will be the master of ceremony. Registration takes place at 7:30 a.m.

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