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GREEN ENTREPRENEURS' FORUM

How can we make new green jobs in Delaware?

The single biggest sector for job growth is in green infrastructure companies. These companies build renewable energy and energy efficiency projects. These companies recover and re-use organic materials which we all view as wastes.

EDEN’s Green Entrepreneurs Forum in collaboration with public and private sponsors will create a program for teaching green economics to would-be green entrepreneurs.

The mission of the Forum will be to bring academics, business leaders and would-be entrepreneurs together in a university setting that focuses on evolving businesses out of the renewable streams of resources like water, agriculture, food processing, industrial processing, solid waste, wastewater and recycling of discarded materials.

The goal of the Forum will be to teach entrepreneurs about green business through EDEN’s “Green Circle of Life”, from which all resource streams originate. The Forum will provide key concepts in green economics, combined with the sage advice and experience of seasoned business people and entrepreneurs who have previously formed and financed viable green businesses.

The Forum will explore business models in resource recovery, to examine the demand that such by-products may have in the marketplace, as they are cleaned, collected, and transported to a buyer who sees the value.

The Entrepreneurs Forum is designed to offer unique classroom and workshop experience in the green infrastructure sectors for people already in business, or aspiring entrepreneurs, who may want to become a part of the green revolution in Delaware. Our premise is that the timing has never been better for new entrepreneurs in renewable resources and renewable energy. Since the federal government, the State of Delaware and private grant-making foundations are offering start-up funding in the way of pure grants, low-cost loans and soft-loans which may convert to grants under performance standards, Forum graduates can become drivers for local economic recovery, building upon skills and experiences created by the Forum.

The course will be offered to business-minded individuals, or people already in a business, who may wish to start a business in green infrastructure, The Forum is an intense training over two half-day sessions of classroom and workshop, using experts, business leaders, and already-established green entrepreneurs. The Forum objective is to teach by example rather than according only to theory. The goal will be to educate the student-entrepreneur on the “pathway to financing a viable business”.

Successful entrepreneurs will tell their stories and experts in the each of the sectors will talk about the pathway and the pitfalls for starting up a viable business. The final session will require the submission of a business plan to be reviewed by the experts. The Top 10 business plans will be featured in a Venture Capital Symposium. The Venture Capital Symposium will allow opportunity for investors and businesses to hear presentations by entrepreneurs that are seeking capital investment for their business ideas in renewable resources and renewable energy.

Project Goals and Objectives
  • Create job opportunities for green infrastructure in Delmarva through the development of green businesses.
  • Create open lines of communication between successful green entrepreneurs in Delmarva and individuals who want to learn to become green entrepreneurs.
  • Send a message to private capital that there are financing opportunities for green infrastructure on the eastern shore. Develop an annual Venture Capital Forum to evaluate and invest in green entrepreneurs.
  • Assist the State of Delaware promote green jobs through the development of a green entrepreneurs “excubator” program.
  • Aid in promoting new initiatives supporting resource recovery through local government policies and practices.
  • Contribute to the reduction of the existing carbon footprint by decreasing the amount of waste that presently flows into our waters and landfills.
  • Advance the public awareness about business opportunities in green infrastructure in  Sussex County and Delmarva.
  • Highlight job possibilities within the waste recovery, transportation, composting and agriculture sectors.
  • Encourage educational programs that promote the development of green opportunities in renewable energy and renewable resources.
  • Create a sustainable forum for business-minded students to learn about green entrepreneurship.
  • Raise public awareness and appreciation and involvement in sustainable practices.
  • Tap into existing, or create new, economic incentives associated with recovery of renewable resources.
  • Improve the quality of life in Delmarva.
Sponsor a recognition/awards event for new green entrepreneurs-to reward those that follow through.