August 2019 Policy Update

As we look toward the critically consequential 2020 elections, our focus at this Summit is to promote reforms that will make our capitalist economy work better for people, the planet, and responsible businesses.

“Our country is suffering many kinds of damage, with worse to come, unless we restore and expand capitalism’s promise of opportunity, reward for hard work, and support for positive innovations,” says ASBC board chair/CEO Jeffrey Hollender. “ASBC members are demonstrating better business approaches in their own firms — and they’re also calling on policymakers to support better business with intelligent legislation.”

A Sustainability Awards Reception, networking luncheon, roundtables and other events offer opportunities to network with other like-minded business leaders nationwide. Presentations and panel discussions by provocative speakers at the Summit include: Former Deputy Secretary of Labor Chris Lu; Former SEIU President Andy Stern; Economic Policy Institute President Thea Lee, past member of the U.S.-China Economic & Security Review Commission; Evan McMullen, Independent presidential candidate in 2016 and former chief policy director for the House Republican Conference; Bipartisan Policy Center Fellow Adrienne Schweer, past chief of protocol at the U.S. Dept. of Defense; Tax reform advocate and NRS President Bill Parks; Green New Deal architect/New Consensus Executive Director Demond Drummer; and Nancy Jacobson, founder of the bipartisan group No Labels.

ASBC members are entitled to registration discounts and all attendees who register before September 18 save significantly with Super-Early Bird prices. Promotional Partners save an additional 15%; contact If you have questions, please email

“A more vibrant, just, sustainable market economy is not only possible, it’s essential,” Hollender concludes. “Check out the full Summit Agenda and convene with us to start making it happen.”

What’s New

ASBC’s New Working Group Starts Crafting Sustainable Packaging Campaign

Legislatures may be in summer recess, but ASBC’s newly formed Sustainable Packaging Working Group is hard at work. At its first official meeting, it began to formulate its guiding principles; important for waging a consistent campaign at the federal level and state levels nationwide. ASBC has already attended California legislative hearings to support the CA Circular Economy and Plastic Pollution Reduction Act (SB 54 and AB 1080), and we’ll continue to advocate for California’s passage of these two bills. We’re also keeping an eye on several Congressional initiatives:

  • Representatives Haley Stevens (MI-11) and Kim Schrier (WA-8)’s Plastics Task Force
  • Representatives Stevens (MI-11) and Schrier (WA-8)’s Amendment on National Recycling Strategy
  • Senator Tom Udall (NM) and Representative Alan Lowenthal (CA-47, Long Beach)’s announcement of their intention to introduce legislation that address plastic waste.

As we move forward with our campaign, we’ll continue to find, support, and create state and federal legislation that curtails plastic waste and builds an economy that is circular and sustainable. If you know about any related initiatives, email Karina Kays and let ASBC know!

Help Secure Vital Investments in Clean Water

ASBC’s Clean Water is Good for Business campaign is moving forward on Capitol Hill. We are bringing the business voice to negotiations on several bills that invest in water infrastructure, creating jobs and improving water quality for millions. In the Senate, we are making the business case for increased grant funding to address harmful algae blooms that cost the American tourism industry an estimated $1 billion every year.

Click to Tweet: America’s deteriorating infrastructure fails to ensure safe drinking water and clean waterways, threatening public health and costing our economy billions. Add your voice urging Congress to invest in water infrastructure:

Advocate for Safer Cosmetics in CA

Meeting with elected officials is one of the most effective ways to secure their support for — or ease their opposition to — any issue. Responsible business leaders will be attending the August 15 advocacy day in Sacramento, CA, to support of the Cosmetic Fragrance and Flavor Ingredient Right to Know Act (SB574) as it approaches final votes in the California Legislature. Policymakers listen to business, so please express your support: Sign onto our letter here!

Click to Tweet: Responsible companies already fully disclose their cosmetic and personal care product ingredients, so accurate labeling laws like SB 574 will help level the playing field and expand markets for safer ingredients. Show your business support: sign on at

Lobby with Californians Against Waste

ASBC has closely followed and supported the California Circular Economy and Plastic Pollution Reduction Act (SB54/AB1080) (see story above). Now, we invite you to join us on August 21 at a lobby day in Sacramento, hosted by Californians Against Waste. Please contact with any questions, and RSVP here if you plan to participate.

Can’t make it but want to show your support? Contact your local legislators and let them know you support the work outlined in SB54 and AB1080! 

ASBC Staff News


Oppel Speaks at Our Natural Interest: Thomas Oppel, executive vice president of ASBC, believes that “successful advocacy is a team sport” and that many different sustainability groups can benefit from the support of responsible business. On behalf of ASBC, Oppel recently spoke at a breakfast of a new coalition, Our Natural Interest, outlining the business case for sustainable policies. “It’s helpful for advocates and legislators to learn why responsible businesses support sustainability measures,” Oppel says, “as that view has often been left out of decisions.” Our Natural Interest works to build support for investing in conserving our land, water, wildlife and other natural resources. Visit

Click to Tweet: Investing in nature just makes good business sense. It’s critical to family farms and ranches, thousands of local recreation and tourism businesses, all their communities, and Americans’ overall health and welfare.

ASBC Member News

W.S. Badger Co-CEO Rebecca Hamilton Named to National Women’s Business Council

W.S. Badger, maker of Badger Balm and other award-winning, people-and planet-friendly body care products, is proud to announce the three-year appointment of Co-CEO Rebecca Hamilton to the National Women’s Business Council (NWBC). This nonpartisan federal advisory committee providing advice and policy recommendations to the President, Congress, and the Small Business Administration on challenges facing women business owners. Read full press release.

Welcome New Silver Member: Hula

Hula provides an array of workspaces for today’s innovative micro- and small businesses. It offers open co-working “hot seats” and dedicated desks as well as small office spaces ranging from 100 to 10,000 square feet. Situated along the shores of Lake Champlain. Hula’s 14-acre campus offers an idyllic setting to recruit top talent, maximize productivity, access growth capital, and foster a healthy, active company culture.

Welcome New Bronze Member: CSR Group LLC

CSR Group LLC provides tools and solutions for a holistic approach to responsible business. From supply chain responsibility and stakeholder engagement, to reporting and communications, or the development of focused strategic programs and management systems, it helps clients of all sizes evolve into forces for positive social and environmental change in all the communities in which they operate.

National Stewardship Action Council Webinars

Want to learn more about battery recycling, household hazardous waste reuse, or pharmaceutical and sharps producer responsibility? To learn from the experts, sign up for our informational webinars on 7/24, 9/5, and 10/24. $125 each, free for NSAC partners, (or buy an individual partnership for $125 and receive one free webinar through June 2020, and other benefits.) Can’t make that day and time? We record every webinar so you can watch it at your convenience. For more information email

Soli Clean Seeks ASBC Member Input in Short Survey

Soli, the customer rewards program that fights climate change, has been chosen to participate in the national CleanTech Open Accelerator Competition which helps start-ups target first markets, attract investment and build customer traction. To help us prepare, we’re asking fellow ASBC members to help with a quick, five-question survey. The survey consists of just five main questions, with some sub-questions depending on main responses. All responses are confidential, and results will only be used in the aggregate.

Upcoming Events

Register Now: ASBC Sustainable Business & Advocacy Summit: “Making Capitalism Work for All”
Washington, D.C. | December 10 – 11
Join ASBC members and other mission-based businesses from around the country for two intensive, inspiring days of learning, networking and advocacy. Hear from over a dozen provocative, high-profile speakers from across the political spectrum, share best practices in panels and roundtables, applaud our Sustainability Award winners and carry ASBC’s sustainable business views on policy to Capitol Hill, as we meet with members of Congress from both parties. Check out our exciting Agenda and Register before Sept. 18 for Super-Early Discounts!

Zero Waste East
Newark, NJ| September 24 – 25
This forum enables policy makers and companies of all sizes to share best practices in moving from a linear economy to a circular economy while generating higher economic returns. Hear ASBC’s David Levine and Thomas Oppel assess various opportunities for renewable energy, and check out the full list of Zero Waste East speakers and topics.

Boston GreenFest
Boston, MA | August 16 – 18
Boston GreenFest is an inspiring, energizing, and free three-day festival in a new venue on the Rose Kennedy Greenway and Long Wharf. Under this year’s theme, Connecting Land and Sea, attendees will learn how to be better stewards of our environment, share ideas and celebrate the green way of doing things! Thomas Oppel, ASBC executive vice president, will speak at the opening breakfast on ASBC’s mission.

The Responsible Business Summit West 2019
San Diego, CA | October 9 – 10
The Responsible Business Summit West brings together more than 250 CEOs, sustainability leaders, investors, government representatives and NGOs to provide the blueprint for innovations and understand what technology will drive the change that sustainability will shape.

Regenerative Earth Summit
Boulder, CO | October 29 – 30
Join At The Epicenter for the third annual Regenerative Earth Summit (RES19)that convenes global leaders from business, agriculture, academia and civic sectors who recognize we can accelerate systemic change in land to market systems that benefit people and planet. Recognizing earth as the source, not a resource, it is crucial that businesses become stakeholders in climate action through their purchasing power and supply source decisions.