MENOMONEE FALLS, WIS. — Nearly 200 executives, including architects, engineers and business and community leaders, attended the 2nd Annual Green Manufacturing Summit, presented by Bradley Corp. in partnership with Wisconsin’s Focus on Energy and the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel at Schlitz Audubon Nature Center in Milwaukee.
“For 88 years, Bradley has designed and manufactured water and energy conserving plumbing technologies and fixtures that have helped green our customer’s facilities,” said Mike Sipek, chief operating officer of Bradley Corp. “Our long-standing green philosophy continues to drive us to further explore innovative sustainable strategies with fellow industry leaders – especially at a time when companies are looking for new ways to adapt to – and prosper in – a leaner and greener economy.”
A common theme of the Summit focused on the operational savings from reducing use of energy, water and other natural resources, offsetting the initial investment of becoming green. “Green is not just environmental sustainability,” said Jon Dommisse, director of New Product Development and Marketing at Bradley Corp. “Green is business sustainability too.”
In her keynote address, Kim Marotta, vice president of Corporate Social Responsibility at MillerCoors, presented sustainable strategies implemented by the brewing company. This case study set the stage for the day’s discussion by examining MillerCoors’ water, energy and carbon footprint reductions throughout its supply chain, along with other environmental sustainability efforts.
A panel at the meeting focused on ways companies can reduce their corporate water footprint and employ other water usage and efficiency strategies. The panelists included Ann Beier, director of the City of Milwaukee’s Office of Environmental Sustainability; William Holahan, professor and chair of the economics department at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee; Richard Meeusen, chairman and CEO of Badger Meter Inc.; Mike Sipek of Bradley Corp.; and Kim Marotta of MillerCoors.
The panelists discussed how businesses have a huge stake in the region’s and world’s water problems and outlined new water initiatives in the Milwaukee-area, such as a local consortium of business leaders working to expand the region’s economy by developing the field of water technology. Speakers also outlined specific examples of how they have addressed water conservation in their companies.
Breakout sessions covered key topics in the realm of green manufacturing, such as practical tips on making an energy assessment and cutting energy costs. The day concluded with a tour of the Gold LEED certified Schlitz Audubon Nature Center, which educated participants on the facility’s photovoltaic solar power system, low-flow plumbing fixtures, geothermal heating system and other green building features.