Monday, March 26, 2012

The 2012 Proxy Preview from has been published.
We see shareholders increasing their pressure on public companies to report not only their own sustainable actions (carbon, water, diversity, etc) , but that of their supply chain as well. The ball is rolling, and the time to prepare for supplier sustainability surveys is now. A wisely-paced, well thought out plan to sustainability will put you in the driver's seat. Plus, sustainably-focused companies economically outperform those who are not through competitive advantage, profitability, and increased brand awareness. There simply are no excuses to wait any longer.
Janet Harrison

34% of shareholder proposals filed were for actions surrounding Environment/Sustainability.
27% of primary filers were from Socially Responsible Investors (SRI’s).
27% of primary filers were from Pension Funds.

The top leading mentions within specific sustainability requests were:
• Vendor Standards
• GhG Goals/Disclosure
Some good take-aways:

• Proposals that ask companies to issue broad sustainability reports that cover a range of issues advocates otherwise bring up on their own have become standard fare in proxy season. They tend to get high levels of support.

• Consistent with Peter Drucker’s belief that “what gets measured gets managed,” the goal is to push sustainability reporting—which is becoming standard practice among major publicly-traded corporations—into the global supply chain.
• A proposal remains pending at Dell and Motorola Solutions. It asks them to use “a phased, tiered approach” to take the necessary steps to help move the Company’s supplier(s) to begin publishing annual, independently verifiable, sustainability reports. Since October, Apple and HP have also agreed to substantially adopt the proposal. Proposal is expected to be filed at more companies in the future.

• Microsoft will publicly post suppliers’ reports on its website, although suppliers can opt out of this disclosure.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Join EcoAsset Solutions as we present 'Building the Business Case for Sustainability', March 22, The Tampa Club, 11:30am-1pm.

Recognizing the importance of sustainability as a business practice, organizations are compelled by internal and external forces to take action. Whether responding to a sustainable supply chain survey or acting on the recommendations of their Green Team, many firms struggle with identifying appropriate initiatives and measuring the true impact of their efforts. Learn how organizations are realizing true financial, social and environmental returns, while fostering employee engagement through the achievement of their sustainability performance goals. $16 members, $20 guests

To register: call 813 229 6028 or email

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Implementing a Climate Action Plan Recommendation

We are all well aware of the increasing gas prices (27 consecutive days of increased pricing). After starting my hour long commute with a stop at the gas station only to rush into traffic with everyone else that is making the journey to downtown Tampa. I begin to look at all of the vehicles around me and 99% of us are all driving solo. I have been making this commute for over a year, and I recognize many of the same vehicles and their bumper stickers.
I have looked into commuting options before, and found one option that seemed more like a journey than a commute to work, it consisted of me riding my bicycle to the bus stop and then taking two different buses to finally end up ½ a mile from my office 2 hours later. A total of 4 hours a day commuting was not feasible option for me.  
However during my commute today I remembered a Climate Action Plan recommendation that EcoAsset’s made to a municipality to increase participation in their existing rideshare program that had a very low participation rate.  The rideshare program is a way to connect you with others that live and work close to you and have the same work schedule, which would be an ideal carpool situation. Rideshare is a great way to reduce the number of vehicles on the road and greenhouse gas emissions.
Today I found out that the Tampa Bay area also has a rideshare program, TBARTA. I signed up today and hope you do too. Maybe next week there will be one less car sitting in the rush hour gridlock.

Monday, February 27, 2012

PACE Presentation to Space Coast Energy Symposium

Last week I presented at the Space Coast Energy Symposium over in Cocoa, FL.  Their group put on an excellent event and I enjoyed my panel on PACE and energy finance.  I wanted to give a quick recap on what I discussed.

EcoAsset Solutions formed a new company in Florida called Ygrene Energy Fund Florida which is headquartered in Tampa.  Our company provides a turnkey third party administration service for local governments in Florida that want to design, implement, finance and administer a PACE (Property Assessed Clean Energy) program in their commmunity.

PACE is an important financing tool for critical property improvements with significant financial benefit .  Our solution makes PACE affordable and convenient and it's ready to go and fully funded on Day 1.  That's the Ygrene difference.

If your community is interested in a Ygrene PACE program, one general action step you can take is to convene your local property owners (commercial and/or residential), contractors, and government staff and officials and engage them in a dialgoue about PACE that Ygrene facilitates in what we call a PACE workshop.

Ultimately, the benefit is simple.  First, FAMILIES that benefit from the JOBS that are created are the clear winners with PACE.  In addition to that, there are enormous environmental benefits, energy savings benefits and the local government will generate new revenues from taxes on product and service sales as well as other revenue.

Finally, if you'd like to learn more about the Miami Green Corridor PACE program that we are launching, please post a comment that I can respond to.  You can also visit

If you'd like to know what the best practices are for launching PACE in Florida and you need to have a plan of action on what to do next, please post a comment or contact me directly at

All the best,


Friday, February 17, 2012

Countdown to the 2012 Sustainable Business Awards

After a year of planning, my co-chair, Herb Goetschius, and I have reached the one week countdown to the 2012 Sustainable Business Awards on February 24th.  Since 2008, Earth Charter US has teamed up with MBA students at The University of Tampa College of Business to honor the most sustainably-focused corporations operating in the Tampa Bay area.  They range in size from global corporations to firms with just a few employees, but their approach to sustainability- as a business practice- is their guiding principle and common foundation.

This year we will have a few special guests, including City of Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn , City of Tampa Green Officer, Thom Snelling, and our emcee, Terry Tomalin, Outdoor/Fitness Editor of The Tampa Bay Times.

When I first met with Terry about the luncheon, he gave me an interesting perspective on sustainability in our area: If you don’t participate in activities based in our natural resources (fishing, swimming, etc) you can’t appreciate the fragility of those resources. He is an avid paddle boarder and founder of the Tampa Bay Frogman, an annual swim across Tampa Bay held in January benefitting the Navy SEAL Foundation.  While swimming and paddling in our surrounding waters, Terry sees first-hand the effects of litter and pollutants in our water.  As economically focused as I personally tend to be, I am glad to have Terry’s perspective and hope this leads to some cross bay paddles with our area business leaders - just not in January!

Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter (@ecoassets, @janet_harrison) and check out Terry’s new book, Everyday Adventures, A Florida Outdoors Guide.  

Janet Harrison