We need to develop a personal stake in our world. With Hi, the Human Index we explore how. When resources and capital become defined in a way that is meaningful to the community, business will thrive off innovation and waste-less production. We now have a responsibility to form a Personal Economy.
The sustainability industry is one of the fastest growing in the world according to research firm Forrester. It's projected to grow by 83% per year topping over $403B in revenue by 2013. New regulations internationally, a new UN Waste framework, and a growing awareness of our impact on the resources we need to thrive as a species is starting to change the way companies think about corporate social responsibility.
We saw the challenge to imagine a new Capitalism for the Long-view; we saw an opportunity to demonstrate how we intend to promote the greater well-being of our planet while helping companies sustain growth and profit. If you’re one of those who want to skip reading and experience this story with more of your senses than just your eyes, we've created a mini-documentary for you.
If you're just looking for some levity, skip to the "Lighter side" link and enjoy.
For the rest of you, please continue reading. This is for you. To experience the concept in it's entirety visit www.doevolve.com/cultivating-evolution.
Environmental Health Concepts, Inc. was officially born in August 2011. We’re a sustainability company headquartered in Kenosha, WI with national and international service capabilities. As a young start-up company we’re taking a tiered approach to implementation ourselves. For example, you'll learn about Hi, The Human Index in this submission; we’re actually letting you in on a part of our business plan we hadn’t planned to share for a few weeks yet. The team decided however that the MIX community and this contest was worth pulling some extra hours to provide at least an early peek.
On our site, you have an opportunity to sign-up for a public beta testing of Hi. Collaborate with us! We only have 100 spots left. If you like what you see, please sign-up on the mailing list to help us shape the future of our Human Index. For additional information on the company, please see the links provided.
We’re in a world resource crisis. If civilization continues to define a resource in a market that does not balance a resource's cost with the toll on: basic human decency, human survival, and evolution; our species will carry the consequences. We see them today: loss of biodiversity, areas without access to clean waters, people without access to healthy food. We experience it in business as lack of inspired labor. This is only the beginning if we do not change our approach.
A little personal history from the CEO of Environmental Health Concepts, Inc.
At one point in my former professional career, I’d had the task of helping the Fortune 500 Environmental Health & Safety departments approve the waste treatment and disposal facilities they used ("approved TSDF's"). Here’s something that’s critical to understand about American philosophies on waste management vs. the United Nations and larger world-view approach. To the letter of the law in the country (and trust me there are more agencies in the United States writing regulations on the environment than there are actual states to write them) we approach waste management with a “cradle-to-grave” attitude.
Translation? We don’t care much about what waste is going to be produced in your process. Unless, you're the one who's holding it when it goes into the hole it will be sitting in, degrading for the next 100 or 1000 or 10,000 years from now. Long and very complicated story cut short: I’ve visited a lot of landfills and regulated waste facilities. Exactly how many, I never kept count but it has to be over 100 in 10 years. Here’s what I’ll never forget. The feeling of standing in the middle of millions upon millions of cubic feet of trash. It stretched as far as the eye could see in either direction. If you can try to close your eyes and share this experience.
First know this. These were beautiful experiences other than the soul searing impact of the waste process. The landfills are in "out there" locations. You know, the kind where when you fly in at 2 a.m. and it takes you two hours to drive to because a certain unnamed home airport throws the entire air logistic system out of wack. HINT & LITTLE KNOWN FACT: although Kenosha is technically a city in the state of Wisconsin, it is commonly referred to in almanacs as a suburb of Chicago.
These are the most peaceful places in the world, even if life moves a little slower than one gets used to these days. Maybe that's the magic of those places. Having obsessively kept up with every new environmental report in the industry, I just walked through those places thinking this. 86% of landfills in the United States leak. They are one of the largest contributors to ground water contamination and the remedial costs to that of a community far exceed the $18Million + clean-up costs we pay for as tax-payers. Let that settle for a second. Now understand that every landfill in the world will eventually leak. I'm a pretty visually motivated person. My trigger? I know no other way to describe it other than to say I felt my soul scream on every silent tour. What's more valuable than oil, gold, or really any other commodity you can think of? Water. Recently an associate and his father mentioned that it would take less than 5 days for a man to kill for it. I didn't bother to snoops that one. Yeah...I might. That's if I wasn't dead first.
It wasn’t just seeing those landfills and the waste process that was difficult. The fact that when you put it all together. All of it. The issues we experience every day at the office, at home, the never-ending news cycles of doom & gloom, the unstable markets, the insane attempt to upkeep the balance of work and family, the loss of habitat, and species. Phew. It just seems to keep speeding up. No one seems to know where to.
How did we get here? Well, so far we're what you would call a pretty lean company. Welcome to Environmental Health Concepts, Inc. Israel Alpizar met then Jennifer Elfering in 2009. He answered an ad for the then single-corporate career mom of one- for a room to rent. The ad was over a page long and was sent with a message. Come live here and help me find new ways to evolve. Some of the concepts we've turned into reality started even then. But it wasn't until June of 2011 that David Conrad and Jennifer Elfering, the founders of Environmental Health Concepts, Inc. took the leap and tied the knot. By August of 2011, these three evaluated their strengths, their goals, and their inspirations. That seeded the innovation behind Environmental Health Concepts, Inc.
The inner desire to provide leadership can be a great common denominator with to engage.
"The drive to provide leadership inspires me to take ownership. I have a say in how things go. I know I'll be heard." Israel Alpizar, 26 years old, Chief Creative Officer at Environmental Health Concepts, Inc.
How does Israel, the guy behind the design define success? "Well, I guess one of the reasons I work is to attain financial security. But beyone that? Success has to be something bigger than us. We have a potential to really stick, with a number of people." "When I think about Hi, It's about simplifying the economics, the decision making process, forming a deeper connection."
As for implementation and when we're done? Collaboration, innovation, and evolution have no limits. Let's be inspired from the outside in.
There is a personal and professional side to all we do. We want children to know their parents do important work. We want our employees leading in their communities and families. We trust our employees’ commitment to the project, to the client, and we trust their ability to manage their own time responsibly. We see the results when we provide an area of freedom. Is it a mind space, a physical space, an enigmatic place? Maybe we'll never know. But someone will. Our team is committed to sharing across projects. Applied with multi-department decision making ability, it fosters an environment within which employees are naturally trained for future positions in the company. We track the strengths of individuals to balance a team. Inspire innovation by asking our teammates to add their unique experience to the pool of innovation. It works, as long as we provide the time for them to experience their freedom. Then we charge forward with more solutions today than yesterday.