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The Horinko Group's Newsletter: Sustainabulletin

October 2013 — In this month's bulletin...

leafTHG to Convene Fifth Annual Executive Summit on November 7

EPA’S Tom Murray Presents on the E3 Initiative at THG’S Environmental Speaker Series

Water Sustainability and Market Processes

The Horinko Group's April 2012 Salon



Description: THG 2012 Summit

THG 2012 Summit—The Next Generation
of Environmental Compliance & Enforcement

As our nation's waste management and cleanup programs mature, we anticipate a transformation of the regulatory landscape.  This year’s THG Summit entitled, Transforming America’s Contaminated Lands — A Vision for Our Nation’s Waste Program, will convene thought leaders in the fields of environmental cleanup, land revitalization, and sustainable materials management.  Participants will examine how EPA and those interested in its policies can sharpen the focus on opportunities to “do more with less” through public–private collaboration to advance environmentally responsible stewardship.

To download a PDF of the agenda, visit

For additional information and sponsorship inquiries, please contact Sean McGinnis at


Description: EPA' Tom Murray

EPA's Tom Murray Presents at THG's ESS Luncheon

The Horinko Group’s Environmental Speaker Series Luncheon on September 20, 2013 featured U.S. EPA’s Tom Murray, Chief of the Prevention Analysis Branch in the Pollution Prevention Division of the Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics.  Mr. Murray presented on and engaged the room in thoughtful discussion around a growing framework, which he and his staff were instrumental in creating, known as E3—Economy Energy, and Environment

E3 is a coordinated federal and local technical assistance initiative helping communities, manufacturers, and manufacturing supply chains adapt and thrive in today's green economy.  E3 efforts engage government agencies at the federal, state, and local levels, NGOs, banks, foundations, business owners and other investment partners, community partners, and sustainability– focused organizations to help manufacturers identify inefficiencies in plant operations, reduce energy consumption, minimize their carbon footprint, prevent pollution, increase productivity, and drive innovation. 

To read the full headline, visit


Description: ELI.png

(ELI) A new study from the Environmental Law Institute finds that the federal government provided approximately $25.425 billion in financial support for coal production, transport, use, or waste disposal during the period 2002-2010. The majority of these dollars — $16.214 billion — are attributable to tax benefits. Of these tax benefits, the single largest category was the nonconventional fuels tax credit, providing $12.22 billion to coal. This credit is no longer available to producers of most coal–derived fuels and is set to sunset for all nonconventional fuels from coal by 2014, decreasing total coal support by 47 percent.

Coal is the most significant source of energy in the United States and has been for years. Like most other energy sources, coal has received support from the federal government. The ELI report quantifies the amount the federal government spent to support coal during the period from 2002 to 2010. This report also identifies and, where possible, quantifies spending that benefited, but did not specifically target, coal.

This report focuses on federal government support for coal through direct spending and its equivalent in foregone revenue collection. This spending includes any action by the U.S. government that results in a cost to government and an identified benefit to coal production, transport, use, or waste disposal.

To read the full press release, visit

To access the study details, visit


Description: A tuboat pushes barges on the Mississippi River. Photo credit: Tom Gill, Flickr

Source: WRI Insights

(Tien Shiao and Paul Reig, WRI Insights) Water risks such as floods, scarcity and pollution are increasingly chipping into corporate bottom lines. The financial sector is taking notice–and taking action.

Calvert Investments asked Hanes Brands to evaluate its losses from cotton-supply shortages due to the 2011 US drought, determining that the company lost $5.2 billion. Trillium Asset Management is now asking companies in its portfolio to factor water risk into their financial projections. And Moody’s Investor Service released warnings about risk to credit ratings in the mining industry, as companies spend more on infrastructure in response to growing water risks.

More and more investors are clamoring for sustainability reports and disclosure initiatives to identify corporate water risks, but the process of actually evaluating water supply risks is challenging. Definitions and interpretations of several key concepts have proven to be difficult to define and track in a consistent way. This hurdle was discussed earlier this month at Stockholm Water Week’s UN Global Compact CEO Water Mandate meeting – and soon, there may be a solution.

To read the full article, visit


CA Green Chem; Source:


( Starting Oct. 1, California's Safer Consumer Products law (also called the Green Chemistry Initiative) goes into effect, with the goal of making hundreds of commonplace consumer items safer — from shampoos and cosmetics to cleaning supplies and food packaging

Using the muscle of the biggest consumer market in the U.S., California wants to reduce toxic chemicals in consumer products, create new business opportunities in green chemistry and reduce the burden on individuals and businesses in having to struggle to identify what's in the products they buy for their families and customers.

To read the full article, visit


Draft Scientific Study; Source: U.S. EPA

Source: U.S. EPA

(Amena Saiyid, Bloomberg BNA) Federal regulators may be able to assert Clean Water Act jurisdiction over more waters and wetlands than are now protected on the basis of a draft scientific study that links all streams and certain wetlands with larger, downstream navigable waters, attorneys and policy analysts say.

The Environmental Protection Agency's draft study finds that all tributary streams, including perennial and the previously unprotected intermittent and ephemeral streams, are physically, chemically and biologically connected to downstream rivers.

The study, released September 17, also finds that wetlands and open waters in flood plains of rivers and riparian areas also are connected in the same way as streams are to downstream rivers.

To read the EPA study, visit

To read the full Bloomberg BNA article, visit


On–Demand Webcast — Investing In Water: The Rationale Beyond The Talking Points

Hoffmann Webinar

This month’s Featured Column contributor Steve Hoffmann, Founder of WaterTech Capital and Acclaimed Author of Planet Water: Investing in the World’s Most Valuable Resource, examines how market processes can be utilized to facilitate solutions to complex water resource sustainability issues.

Earlier this year, THG in partnership with WaterTech Capital, released a webcast entitled, Investing in Water: The Rationale Beyond the Talking Points, which reviews the current state of water investing and the fundamental investment drivers going forward. Having designed water sector indices utilized by the leading water ETFs, Mr. Hoffmann examines the widely–stated rationale for investing in water, the frameworks that have developed to accommodate water investment strategies, and the inherent disconnects that have emerged. Mr. Hoffmann's discussion of water market drivers goes beyond the traditional talking points associated with a 'thematic' investment and presents a renewed case for strategically investing in water.

To view the free trailer or purchase the on–demand webcast, visit

ELI Policy Forum: U.S. Agriculture and the Global Environment
October 22, 2013 | Washington, DC | RSVP

ELI Policy Forum

The Environmental Law Institute’s Miriam Hamilton Keare Policy Forum will feature a panel of experts discussing the environmental and human effects of modern agriculture, with a specific focus on the costs and benefits of the Farm Bill now being considered by Congress.  The international implications of these domestic policies will then be considered, including the complex interactions between agricultural policy, environmental impacts, and harvest and famine on a global scale.  The networking event and panel discussion is free and open to the public.

For additional information, visit

National Nonpoint Source Monitoring Conference & Workshops
October 28-30, 2013 | Cleveland, OH | Registration

2013 Nonpoint Source Monitoring ConferenceThe 2013 Nonpoint Source Monitoring Conference is focused this year on working together to protect and restore water resources.  The conference provides a forum for sharing information and communicating ways to track and control NPS pollution.  This year marks the 21st gathering of the conference and sessions will examine holistic and inclusive approaches to assessing and solving problems in watersheds impacted by NPS pollution including integration of resources and skills between the public and private sectors.

For additional information, visit

Water, Food, Energy & Innovation for a Sustainable World
November 3-6, 2013 | Tampa, FL | Registration

Water, Food, Energy & Innovation for a Sustainable WorldThe American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, and Soil Science Society of America along with various international agronomy organizations will be hosting over 4,000 scientists, professionals, educators, and students for the 2013 International Annual Meetings “Water, Food, Energy & Innovation for a Sustainable World”.

For additional information, visit

The Social Cost of Carbon: Implications for Modernizing Our Electricity System
November 5, 2013 | Washington, DC | Registration

Johns Hopkins UnivLaurie T. Johnson, Ph.D., Chief Economist, Climate and Clean Air Program at the Natural Resources Defense Council will be presenting about the monetized value of the marginal benefit of reducing one metric ton of CO2, or the “social cost of carbon”.  The talk will cover research that looks at the social cost benefit analysis of various energy sources.

For additional information, visit

SETAC North America 34th Annual Meeting
November 17-21, 2013 | Nashville, TN | Registration

SETAC NA 34th Annual MeetingThe Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry’s 34th Annual Meeting includes five days of training and events with more than 2,300 scientists, assessors, regulators, and managers.  Topics include aquatic toxicology and ecology, ecological risk assessment, environmental or analytical chemistry, terrestrial or wildlife toxicology and ecology, risk management, and remediation.  This year’s focus will be harmonizing science across disciplines.

For additional information, visit



By: The Water Resources Action Project

J Street Conferene

The Water Resources Action Project is pleased to unveil its revamped website featuring updated news, information on its ongoing projects, images, biographies of our newest board and team members, a comprehensive introduction to the basics of rain harvesting system technologies, and many other additions and improvements.

On the “How it Works” page, users can now find a detailed PowerPoint presentation on rainwater harvesting technologies including rain barrels and cistern systems, describing why they are practical, their components, the catchment and conveyance system, and a cost benefit breakdown for each.  Picture galleries have also been added to the page illustrating each type of system.

To read the remainder of In the Spotlight, visit


Water Sustainability and Market Processes (EXCERPT)


Excerpt from: Water Sustainability and Market Processes

By: Steve Hoffmann, Founder and Managing Director, WaterTech Capital LLC and Senior Advisor, Water Sector Sustainability & Investment, The Horinko Group

The notion of sustainable water use, before an attempt to measure it as a process or define it as a goal, involves the normative determination of the cultural value of water sustainability.   Human institutions are shaped by our core values, whatever they may be, and that is why a sustainability ethic must permeate global belief systems.  As the social value of water sustainability is elevated to a social norm, water institutions will begin to change.  The strength of this core belief will determine the extent to which policy can effectively utilize market processes in the pursuit of sustainability.

There exists, however, an ethical disconnect between the institutionalized governance of a natural resource, which arguably constitutes the planet’s most valuable biogeochemical cycle, and the supply and demand fundamentals of water as a necessarily economic commodity.  It is becoming increasingly clear that water scarcity results as much from an inefficient institutional structure as from the physical limitations imposed by the dynamics of availability.