GreenBuzz: Who are the leading companies in natural capital?

Taking Care of Business
By Joel Makower, Chairman & Executive Editor

Today is the deadline for submitting nominations to VERGE Accelerate, our pitch competition for start-ups and early-stage entrepreneurs working at the convergence of technology and sustainability. Up to 20 selected companies will present on stage next month at VERGE SF before 800 or so attendees and thousands more watching the livestream (as well as our panel of investors). Both online and in-person groups will vote for the winners. Submit your nominations here — but please hurry!

Strike Up the Brand: Things are shaping up nicely for this Wednesday’s webcast, on The Impact of Sustainability on Your College or University Brand. It features two leading schools — Arizona State University and Notre Dame — who’ll be duking it out on the football field early next month. This week, they’ll be more collaborative, sharing their expertise and insights into how sustainability is becoming a competitive advantage for them. The webcast is free; register here.

We have two other great webcasts coming up this month. See listings on the right-hand column.

Also This Week: We offer a terrific package of stories from World Water Week, which took place last week in Stockholm. Leading it off is a firsthand report from Deloitte’s Will Sarni, one of the leading thinkers on corporate water strategy, who offers some nuggets on what he saw and heard … I highly recommendMicrosoft sustainability leader Rob Bernard’s post on how the software giant is working with academics toward the goal of determining how to conserve the greatest number of plant species possible by protecting small landmasses. Pretty interesting stuff. … and I preview an exciting new project we’re undertaking with Trucost, our partner for the annual State of Green Business report. For the 2014 edition, we’ll be launching a Natural Capital Leaders Index, naming the companies that are doing the best to decouple environmental impact from growth. Stay tuned.

First up

Who are the leaders in natural capital?
By Joel Makower

For all the talk about “natural capital” in business there’s been no way of knowing who is showing the way. We’re about to find out.…Read More

To map and protect: Microsoft’s bid to save at-risk plant life
By Rob Bernard

The tech giant’s chief environmental strategist provides a peek at a project to identify the world’s most biodiverse regions.…Read More

Can sustainable business and economic development work together?
By Ron Schultz

Here’s how to bridge the gap between economic development agencies and sustainability innovators.…Read More

Complimentary GreenBiz Webcast

Sustain Your Campus. Sustain Your Brand: The Impact of Sustainability on Your College or University Brand
Sponsored by Waste Management

Much like the private sector, colleges and universities are viewing sustainability as a competitive differentiation in a crowded marketplace. Universities are establishing sustainable initiatives such as energy and water conservation, materials management and recycling and green procurement practices. Join us for a free, one-hour webcast exploring these universities’ experiences and insights. Register Here.

By the Numbers

5 ways green marketing can outsmart human nature
By Lauren Turner

Even if we’re hard-wired to degrade the planet, smart marketing can make the masses see the light.…Read More

3 ways Walmart can improve its labor and human rights auditing
By Tom Gosselin

If you had access to 1 percent of Walmart’s dividends, how would you protect labor and human rights?…Read More

Complimentary GreenBiz Webcast

Are You Ready for the EH&S Challenges of 2014?
Sponsored by Enviance

Join us for a candid conversation focusing on compelling case studies from in-house EH&S professionals who are driving changes within their organizations. Get an inside perspective on how to ensure that EH&S decision making is made on best-available data to support future resource allocation; better relationships with regulators, suppliers, consumers, employees; and better environmental outcomes. Register Here.

World Water Week

World Water Week finds power in partnerships
By Will Sarni

The world’s water heavyweights met in Stockholm to address looming threats to quality and quantity. Here are highlights.…Read More

How cloud technology can bring clean drinking water to India
By Kristine Wong

Sensors and solar-powered ATMs are key features in an expanding network of stations enabling easy access to water.…Read More

Worried about water, Colorado businesses urge 25 percent cut
By Theo Spencer

A report from Environmental Entrepreneurs rings a warning about future shortages.…Read More

Satellites reveal path to better water management 
By Andrew Maddocks

In many parts of the world, people have had no idea how much water is being withdrawn from aquifers — until now.…Read More

Complimentary GreenBiz Webcast

Building Analytics: Getting the Most from Your Data
Sponsored by Johnson Controls

Dashboards can tell us what’s happening right now, or what already has happened. The next-generation technology will go beyond that to predict the future. Tools like fault detection and diagnostics, continuous commissioning and predictive maintenance will enable us to gain a deeper view of energy use, and create more opportunities for optimizations. Join us for a lively discussion on advanced building efficiency applications. Register Here.

Video from Convergence Paris

Microsoft: How to build the smartest campus in the world
By Darrell Smith

Microsoft’s director of facilities, Darrell Smith, explains how the company leveraged Big Data to transform energy usage at its Puget Sound campus.…Read More

White Papers

·  How Product Life Cycle Assessment empowers Chief Sustainability Officers

·  Six growing trends in corporate sustainability