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Eliminating Waste Makes Good Business Sense

“Is it possible for a network of more than 240 factories across 67 countries to completely eliminate landfill waste? And even if it is, would it be practical or indeed financially viable? Unilever has just proven that not only is it possible, but that it also makes sound business sense.

Sending zero non-hazardous waste to landfill has resulted in more than €200m (£131.2m) of cost avoidance and created hundreds of jobs. In Egypt, for example, disabled employees are earning extra income by recycling waste material from production lines.

The approach is to first reduce waste at source then reuse, recover or recycle what’s left. That means reconsidering everything consumed in a factory from reusing packing materials from supplier deliveries to recycling food waste from staff cafeterias.

And the waste is being used in some pretty innovative ways. In Cote D’Ivoire, it’s turned into low cost building materials. In China, it’s used to…”



Originally posted by The Guardian. Full article at

Digital Jobs Help Grow Hollywood’s Economy

“A surge in digital entertainment jobs from new online shows on Amazon, YouTube and other new-media outlets has helped drive employment in Hollywood to the highest level in a decade.

Some 8,000 new jobs were added to the motion picture and sound recording sector in Los Angeles County last year, according to state jobs data. The 6.5% growth from the previous year was three times higher than all private-sector jobs in the county.

There have been signs that the California economy has been on the mend for some time. But the dramatic recovery of the entertainment sector is particularly crucial to L.A. because it pumps billions of dollars into the region’s economy.

It’s an unexpected comeback story for an industry hard hit by a stream of layoffs at major studios and an unwelcome trend of filming being lured out of state by generous tax credits and rebates.

“We have a prolonged recovery from the recession, then we have a digital media surge that is taking place here in Southern California and an increase in commercial activity as firms are increasing their advertising expenditures,” said Robert Kleinhenz, chief economist with Los Angeles County Economic Development Corp. “It’s encouraging that we have been able to see these gains in employment elsewhere that have been backfilling the jobs that are lost.”

Although California does not break out job figures for digital media, Kleinhenz and other economists believe that the rebound has been partly fueled by a crop of new online shows from YouTube, Amazon Studios, Yahoo and other Internet companies.

These new digital venues are rapidly reshaping how…”


Originally posted by The Los Angeles Times. Full article at

Operations at West Coast Ports Resume Despite Warning of Gridlock

“Labor negotiations resumed Monday at West Coast ports, including the Port of Oakland, following a weekend shutdown of vessel cargo operations.

By mid-Monday, there were 14 container ships anchored in San Francisco Bay and outside the Golden Gate awaiting a marine berth at one of the port’s five terminals.

The partial shutdown of port operations at 29 West Coast ports was called by the Pacific Maritime Association, which represents shippers and terminal operators in increasingly bitter negotiations with the International Longshore and Warehouse Union.

Negotiations are now in their ninth month, with a work slowdown and equipment shortage crippling operations up and down the coast. The slowdown has dismayed importers and exporters.

The association warned last week that the ports are facing “gridlock” because of a longshore workers slowdown. The union has countered that the logjam is due to a number factors beyond its control.

Federal intervention would be likely if the association halted all operations at the port because of gridlock, according to a Port of Oakland update.

The port, which leases space to terminal operators, warned that a coast-wide strike or a shutdown by employers would idle tens of thousands of workers and slam manufacturers, farmers and small business owners. It said more than 70,000 people depend on the port for their…”



Originally posted by San Jose Mercury News. Full article at



“Business leaders testified in Washington D.C. on Wednesday to discuss whether employers should legally be forced to use the federal employment verification system known as E-Verify.

By comparing employee information to federal data, E-Verify seeks to prevent employers from hiring illegal immigrants. Now lawmakers and business leaders have gathered to discuss whether the House should pass the Legal Workforce Actwhich would require all employers to use the system.

The Legal Workforce Act isn’t the first time lawmakers have tried to make E-Verify mandatory for all businesses. Since the system was established in 1997 as the Basic Pilot Program, it has been expanded on the state and federal level on numerous occasions. Some states have passed legislation making it mandatory for certain businesses while other states require all employers to use it.

Randel Johnson, the senior vice president of labor, immigration and employee benefits at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, notes that though his organization has opposed prior expansions of E-Verify, recent improvements have made them reconsider their position.

“During the period 2006 to 2009 we testified five times and on each occasion, the Chamber, while supporting broad reforms to our legal immigration system, expressed opposition to the mandatory expansion of E-Verify without extensive improvements to the workability and reliability of what we saw as a burdensome system,” Johnson detailed in his statement before the House Judiciary Committee.

“However, in light of improvements in E-Verify, its use by federal contractors, and the focus on a more reliable employment verification system as a necessity, as well as a logical prerequisite to further immigration reform, the U.S. Chamber reassessed its position,” Johnson concluded.

Speaking on behalf of the National Council of Farmer Cooperatives and the Agriculture Workforce Coalition, Chuck Conner argued that expanding the verification system would have a proudly negative impact on American farmers and businesses.

“While the AWC recognizes the need for interior enforcement, a mechanism such as mandatory E-verify would have a devastating impact on our industry in the absence of a legislative solution for agriculture’s labor needs,” Connernoted in his statement to the committee.

“Immigration enforcement without a program flexible enough to address the labor needs of fruit, vegetable, dairy and nursery farms, and ranches, will result in many U.S. farmers and their farm employees losing their livelihoods and an overall decrease in U.S. agricultural production,” Conner argued. “The effect would go far beyond the farm gate.”

Angelo Amador, the senior vice president of the National Restaurant Association, sees a federally enforced system as a…”

Originally posted by The Daily Caller. Full article at