Midwest Gets Sustainability Boost with First GRI Conference

Midwest Gets Sustainability Boost with First GRI Conference

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Wednesday, May 23, 2012 - 2:30pm

CONTENT: Press Release

(3BL Media) May 23, 2012 - The US heartland will get a sustainability boost this month, as the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) holds its first conference in St Louis, Missouri on 22-23 May 2012. Midwestern companies are rallying to make sustainability part of their organizational strategy and operations, and the GRI conference shows how the international movement towards sustainability and transparency in business has taken hold in the region.

With the theme Making Sustainability Count: Tracking Progress, Driving Opportunity, the conference will provide companies in the region with practical solutions, helping them track their sustainability performance and progress towards a sustainable economy.

GRI provides a comprehensive sustainability reporting framework that is widely used around the world. The GRI Guidelines help companies report their economic, environmental and social performance.

GRI has a regional Focal Point in New York, which is organizing this first US conference, with the support of St. Louis University (Emerson Ethics Center & Center for Sustainability) and the St. Louis Regional Chamber and Growth Association.

“We are excited for the St. Louis region to host this conference and for our area companies to share best practices on how sustainability can lead to business growth”, says Eric Schneider, Senior Director of Energy and Environment for the St. Louis Regional Chamber and Growth Association.

"I am thrilled that GRI, Saint Louis University (Center for Ethics and Sustainability) and RCGA have come together to raise awareness on the importance of Sustainability; this will be a great platform to generate more ideas and initaitives to faciliatate sustainability efforts in our region, says Dr Nitish Singh of the Center for Ethics & Sustainability of St Louis University.

With Master Classes and experience sharing, this event will help equip delegates with the practical knowledge needed to advance sustainability reporting in their organization, the midwest, and the USA.

Herman Mulder, Chairman of the Global Reporting Initiative, will talk about the future of reporting, kick-starting the Conference on 23 May. More than 200 delegates and speakers will gather to share stories and experiences, explore trends in reporting, and gain new expertise.

Mike Wallace, Director of GRI’s Focal Point USA, explained the importance of the conference. “This is the first time such an international collection of sustainability professionals has come together in the Midwest to explore sustainability at a regional level. We are still facing difficult financial times, and integrating long-term sustainability concepts into core business strategy can give companies and the economy a much needed boost in performance.

“This is an exciting opportunity to come together and introduce thought leaders from across industry and the global economy and work together to learn and integrate new sustainable strategies,” added Wallace.

Speakers from financial markets, including the New York Stock Exchange, BlackRock, Prudential, and Bloomberg, will come together with practitioners, including Dell, Clorox, and Mosaic), to give delegates an insight into the importance and practicalities of sustainability reporting. Students from St Louis University will also be able to attend free Master Classes on sustainability topics.

Media are invited to attend the event. For more details and to register, contact Marjella Alma, alma@globalreporting.org.


About the Global Reporting Initiative
The Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) produces a comprehensive Sustainability Reporting Framework that is widely used around the world, to enable greater organizational transparency. The Framework, including the Reporting Guidelines, sets out the Principles and Indicators organizations can use to report their economic, environmental, and social performance. GRI is committed to continuously improving and increasing the use of the Guidelines, which are freely available to the public.

GRI, a multi-stakeholder foundation, was set up in the US in 1997 by CERES and the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP). In 2002, GRI moved its central office to Amsterdam, where the Secretariat is currently located. GRI has regional ‘Focal Points’ in Australia, Brazil, China, India and the USA, and a worldwide network of 30,000 people.

Website: www.globalreporting.org