Life Cycle Thinking

GEMI fall meeting focuses on life cycle innovation and product sustainability

Members discuss emerging science and policy issues, product life cycle sustainability and driving business growth through life-cycle thinking

Washington, DC – The Global Environmental Management Initiative (GEMI), the global leader in developing insights, networking and creating collaborative sustainability solutions for business, gathered at member P&G’s Mason Business Center in Cincinnati, Ohio, on October 28-29 for GEMI’s fall meeting. Themed “Life Cycle Thinking and Product Design Strategies,” the program focused on how leading businesses are advancing life cycle innovation and integrating sustainability approaches and goals.

“Our group of environmental, health and sustainability professionals concentrates on helping others create sustainability strategies and win leadership support in their organizations. This meeting was an opportunity for us to dive deep on sustainability within the product life cycle, particularly green chemistry, toxicology, life cycle assessment and policy factors,” said Dan Daggett, executive director, Sustainability, Sealed Air, and vice chair, GEMI. “We had direct access to some of the best minds in sustainable engineering and design, which enabled constructive discussion about the business value of life-cycle thinking in product development.”

The meeting included several experts in life-cycle thinking, including guest speakers from Aligned Incentives, American Chemistry Council, BASF, Environmental Defense Fund, GE Aviation, Johnson & Johnson, the Ohio State University, Pure Strategies, thinkstep and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Together with GEMI speakers, the meeting addressed green chemistry, engineering and design; advancing product sustainability programs; emerging issues in science and policy; enhancing sustainability across the product life cycle; insights from case studies in green engineering and sustainable design; the business value of life cycle thinking; and collaborative business solutions to life cycle challenges.

“After we heard from guest speakers and asked questions, we were able to share life cycle issues from our organizations, discuss common approaches, identify gaps and determine opportunities to collaborate to advance sustainable business solutions,” said Stan Mierzejewski, senior manager, Sustainability, Tennant, and chair, Tools Work Group, GEMI. “Harnessing the insights from that conversation, we’re in the process of defining the core focus issues for our next GEMI Quick Guide, which we hope to release in early 2016.”

GEMI’s Quick Guide series features practices to address real-time issues and sustainability concepts, supported with mini case studies from member companies. All Quick Guides are available to the public: http://gemi.org/solutions/solutions-quick-guides/.

The next GEMI meeting will be March 2016. Non-member companies considering membership may request attendance at one meeting on a complimentary basis. For more information about GEMI, membership benefits and upcoming meetings, visit www.gemi.org or email GEMI’s Executive Director, Steve Hellem: shellem@navista.net.

About GEMI

GEMI is the global leader in developing insights, networking, and creating collaborative sustainability solutions for business. For 25 years, GEMI has captured the vision and experience of global corporate environmental, health and safety (EHS) and sustainability leaders from diverse business sectors through the development of a wide range of publicly-available, solutions-based tools designed to help companies improve the environment, their operations and add business value.

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Monica MacKay: 262-563-5665

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