I just got back from exhibiting and speaking at Earth Day Texas, April 24th through 26th in Dallas. Touted as the biggest Earth Day event on the planet, it didn’t disappoint. It was a combination green festival, county fair (it was, after all, held at the Texas Fair Grounds), and networking conference with a wide variety of activities for both exhibitors and attendees. The mission of Earth Day Texas is to provide a forum for businesses, non-profits, academic institutions, and government agencies to network and engage the public in environmental topics.
Several Green Seal clients were represented and our booth in the Automobile Building sat right between Renewal by Andersen and ServiceMaster Eagle Maintenance Co. Distributor Jan-Pak was close by, represented Clorox, Diversey, and Georgia Pacific, and Harvard University – Division of Continuing Education, a cleaning service client, had a booth in Centennial Hall.
Spending time with clients and hearing about their passion for sustainability is always great. Mona More from Renewal by Andersen quickly displayed our Green Seal signage on the doors and windows in their booth. And I had the pleasure of interviewing Jesus Cortez from ServiceMaster Eagle Maintenance and hearing his views on green cleaning. He’s especially concerned about school children and their exposure to dangerous chemicals in the cleaning process.
Earth Day Texas tends to be a Dallas-focused event, but many national and international companies and non-profits attended and spoke. I attended a panel discussion involving a really diverse group including Greenpeace, AMD, International Rivers Network, and Patagonia. The speakers highlighted the need for collaboration between business and environmental groups and emphasized why conservation is an important cause on both sides of the aisle.
Arthur Weissman, Green Seal’s President and CEO, was a guest at the Future 500 conference before the Earth Day event. The conference brought together a diverse group of leaders from industry and non-profit groups to discuss how we can all collaborate to create a more sustainable world. They didn’t quite solve the problem, but they made a good start and agreed to meet again soon.
The message at our booth and at my presentation was that green starts at home but doesn’t stay there. I encouraged people to demand that the places they go (the office, school, coffee shop…) be as green as their homes. Lots of government organization and university exhibitors grabbed info to take back to their facilities folks. And the families walking the aisles were happy to know that they can green their daycare centers and schools.
It was great to be back in the Midwest, as I was reminded when the show closed down early TWICE because of the threat of tornados. But it’s not really an Earth Day event unless Mother Nature gets involved, is it?