Environmental Initiative - Home

Archive for February, 2016

Introducing Mikey Weitekamp – Senior Project Manager

February 15th, 2016

Hello! I’m Mikey Weitekamp, Environmental Initiative’s new Senior Project Manager. My primary focus will be on our clean air program, facilitating collaboration between residents, businesses, nonprofits, and government to reduce harmful air pollution.

My environmental roots go back to watching zebra mussels invade the Black and Mississippi River systems in southwestern Wisconsin. Being a nerdy kid with nothing better to do, I spent hours at a time diving for native clams to break off the zebra mussels. I didn’t know it at the time, but that interest would drive my personal and professional development.

I officially became a Minnesotan when I attended the University of Minnesota, earning dual degrees in Marketing and Environmental Sciences, Policy, and Management, with a minor in Forestry. During my time in school, I worked on projects ranging from collaborative, economic modeling of Minnesota’s Forest Industries to hauling compost by bike. After graduation, I spent a summer doing construction and stonemasonry at the Steger Wilderness Center while helping Will develop a business plan framework for the facility’s ongoing construction and operations.

For the past four years, I worked on the Waste Wise program at the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce, where we built innovative partnerships with local counties and municipalities to help businesses save money by diverting millions of pounds of waste. Among other projects, I had the pleasure of working with the Saint Paul Saints to equip CHS Field with state-of-the art waste reduction, recycling and composting systems.

I’m incredibly excited to join the team here at Environmental Initiative, and am looking forward to collaborating on common-sense approaches to improve air quality in our great state.

Mikey Weitekamp


Senior Project Manager, Environmental Initiative

Recycling Opportunities Made Simple for Regional Businesses

February 11th, 2016

Chances are you’ve recently read or heard something about recycling in the metro area. A lot of attention has been placed on recycling efforts, especially for businesses, within the past year. To meet a 75% waste diversion goal set for the Metro area, a new recycling mandate for businesses went into effect on January 1st of this year. Now that most businesses are required to recycle at least 3 different materials, several programs and resources have come online to help.

Depending on the business location, there may be free technical assistance, grant funds, and educational resources available Sam Hanson Wasteto help reduce waste and recycle more. For businesses with multiple sites, it can be difficult to navigate the resources available and initiate new practices across sites. To help businesses determine the best ways to implement change across all their locations, Environmental Initiative is engaging regional decision-makers with influence on waste and recycling practices at national/regional chains, companies with multiple sites or locations, and commercial property management companies. We’re connecting businesses with the best resources available to help create large-scale change across all their locations in Anoka, Carver, Dakota, Hennepin, Ramsey and Washington Counties.

With the recycling mandate in effect, the opportunity to save money, and the positive environmental benefits of enhanced resource management, it’s never been a better time to improve recycling for businesses. Know a decision-maker who can influence waste and recycling changes across the metro region? Contact me at 612-334-3388 ext. 8111.

Sam Hanson


Director, Sustainability Program
Environmental Initiative - Home