Public and private organizations across Wake County have come together to support and advance sustainability in the region. The coalition called the Business Sustainability Roundtable (BSR), is convened by the Raleigh Chamber and made up of leading companies and public institutions with significant commitments on sustainability.
Wake County Economic Development, a program of the Raleigh Chamber, NC State University’s Office of Partnerships, and FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies, a world leading contract development manufacturing organization (CDMO) for biologics, vaccines, and advanced therapies, are jointly leading the initiative. Additional founding members include Credit Suisse, Duke Energy, John Deere, SAS, and Wake County Government.
With continued economic momentum across Wake County and the Research Triangle region, the initial key areas of focus for the BSR will be helping the community to grow responsibly and sustainably into the future. The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals will serve as guidelines for the coalition’s efforts.
“By bringing together industry, government, and academia, Wake County and the Research Triangle region will be uniquely positioned as a global innovator in sustainability,” said Raleigh Chamber President & CEO Adrienne Cole. “We look forward to working collaboratively to create solutions that improve the quality of life for our communities while strengthening economic growth and job creation.”
Bringing together the public and private sectors is crucial to the success of this initiative. NC State is a hub for research and innovation in the Triangle across disciplines and industries.
“NC State is recognized as a global leader in sustainability across its operations, academics, and research,” said Mark Schmidt, NC State’s associate vice chancellor for partnerships. “The university is preparing future leaders and bringing to market new solutions in areas from carbon capture to advanced manufacturing, among other innovations. The BSR creates a platform for NC State to apply this expertise alongside industry and government for real-world impact.”
FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies’ tremendous investment in Wake County in 2021 served as one of the drivers for this regional conversation. The company’s commitment to design and build the largest end-to-end cell culture CDMO facility in North America with specific sustainability targets from construction to operation will build on the area’s progressive environmental practices, such as its advanced water reclamation systems.
“With a design targeting 100% clean-energy utilization, the advanced biomanufacturing site we are building will deliver medicines to patients as well as contribute to a clean energy economy in the region,” said Kenneth Bilenberg, Holly Springs site head, FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies. “We look forward to working with our local partners to set an example for other manufacturing companies in the region to identify and mitigate their impacts on the environment through reducing emissions, improving water conservation, planning for biodiversity preservation, and supporting environmental stewardship education.”
The BSR’s vision will be shared during the Raleigh Chamber’s Sustainability Conference on March 29 at the Raleigh Convention Center. The conference will highlight corporate efforts across areas such as Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG), climate change, clean energy adoption and conservation, as well as other related topics. The event will also launch broader conversations around community and corporate sustainability strategies. Michael S. Regan, Administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, will be the keynote speaker. Regan will address how the environment is a priority for all levels of government, and he will share how growing environmental protection is shaping economic development across the United States.
Looking ahead, the BSR will serve as a forum for companies to learn and share best practices in corporate environmental sustainability, help define priority areas for communities to support economic growth, and develop a strategy for the region to be recognized as a leader in environmental sustainability. The coalition will not only include global leading companies but also smaller businesses, to fully represent the region’s economy and establish competitive goals as sustainability becomes a critical driver for all organizations.
For more information, please contact Albert Alwang at email@example.com.
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