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New local chamber of commerce advocates for sustainability

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A new chamber of commerce is advocating for sustainability — for the environment and the workforce.

The aptly named Chamber of Sustainable Commerce started last October.

About 50 businesses attended its first mixer this week. Attendees from Kauaʻi, Big Island, Maui and Molokaʻi gathered in Honolulu.

The chamber supports policies relating to protecting the environment, increasing certain taxes, and strict sexual harassment prevention in the workplace.

The chamber supported measures raising the minimum wage to $18 an hour, and a truthful coffee label bill during the 2022 legislative session.

Kim Coco Iwamoto is the founder of the Chamber of Sustainable Commerce. Iwamoto tells HPR she saw many businesses did not align themselves with the values of earlier chambers of commerce.

"We need to create a chamber of commerce that is focused on sustainability, not just environmental, but you know, the sustainability of business within the context of community with employees, seeing business as part of a larger community and not just profit-driven," says Iwamoto.

More information can be found on the Chamber of Sustainable Commerce's website.

Zoe Dym was a news producer at Hawaiʻi Public Radio.
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