One thing I can change: Make your business truly zero-waste

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One thing I can change: Make your business truly zero-waste

About the speaker
  • Stephanie Barger
    Stephanie Barger
    Director, Market Transformation & Development, USGBC TRUE Certification for Zero Waste at U.S. Green Building Council
    As Director of Market Transformation & Development for TRUE certification, Stephanie Barger is responsible for the growth and development of the TRUE program. TRUE was acquired by GBCI in 2016 and was previously known as U.S. Zero Waste Business Council, which Barger formed in January 2012 and developed the zero waste certification. She overseas growth of TRUE in western US, Latin America, Asia and Canada. She received her Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from San Diego State University. In her spare time, Barger raises guide dog puppies for the blind and advocates for humane treatment of all creatures great and small. She lives in Penryn, California. Barger has been dedicated to meeting the growing need for educational resources, peer-to-peer networking and third-party certification for businesses across the nation related to waste reduction and zero waste. She brings over 25 years of experience in environmental stewardship, employee training, management consulting and business development. Prior to forming the U.S. Zero Waste Business Council, Barger spent 15 years leading Earth Resource Foundation (ERF), a dynamic high school environmental leadership program. ERF’s campaigns included curbing plastic pollution through zero waste, promoting native plant restoration, advocating for smoke-free beaches and improving watershed management. In 2009, ERF was awarded a Federal Stimulus Grant (the California Green Jobs Program in Orange County) to provide training for at-risk youth in zero waste and career development. Stephanie also co-wrote a $5 million Department of Labor grant which not only became a professional development program but launch a community college certificate program.

Key takeaways

Educating and empowering your employees to engage in the zero waste conversation is key.

Zero waste is as much about the journey as the destination. Companies should aim for zero, even if they can't get there immediately.

By eliminating disposable items, businesses can start saving money without extensive financial outlays.