IEE has been working with an exciting new group of large businesses and city governments – the East Bay Environmental Network (EBEN). EBEN is a forum where East Bay businesses can get support from utility providers, local governments and each other to become more productive and sustainable.
As awareness about the negative environmental impacts of the energy and waste-producing activities of large organizations grows, many of these organizations – businesses, universities and nonprofits – are increasingly working to mitigate these impacts through sustainability initiatives. Often, this involves a steep learning curve for organizations to learn how to cost-effectively reduce their greenhouse gas emissions and poses a challenge for the busy managers tasked with implementing the sustainability initiatives.
EBEN is engaged in an innovative approach to help organizations through this process: establish a peer-to-peer network that encourages and facilitates the sharing of best practices, with additional support and resources made readily available through the participation of utilities and local governments in the network. Current EBEN participants include the Cities of Berkeley, Oakland, and Emeryville, Pacific Gas & Electric, East Bay Municipal Utilities District, Waste Management, Bayer, Clif Bar, BART, StopWaste.org and UC Berkeley.
As an EBEN partner, IEE has launched the new EBEN website, and is helping to provide a knowledge infrastructure and other support to this important endeavor.