(August 31, 2020) Elementis is proud to announce the completion of a new sustainability-inspired mural at one of its U.S. locations in the Harbor District of Milwaukee, WI.
This special mural project using a 100 ft × 24 ft wall of the facility, faces Water Street., one of the most popular streets in the community. The wall is being used by the community improvement program, Harbor District Inc., as space for the mural displaying local wildlife found in the Milwaukee River. The waterfront scene, painted by famous muralist Justin Suarez, features animal species found in the greater Milwaukee River including an otter, beaver and Belted Kingfisher.
Completed on August 12, the mural illustrates species that were present in the greater Milwaukee River but mostly disappeared many years ago. Now, with the health of the river improving, these animals are returning with beaver and otter sightings. With a love for animals and nature, Suarez worked with scientists at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Freshwater Institute to determine which species to paint. Elementis LTP offered the side of its building as the art space.
Eric Dick, Elementis Business Manager – Chrome Sulfate and Board of Directors member for Harbor District Inc., describes the mural as part of the program’s goal to work with the community and business leaders to redevelop the area.
“We are operating an industrial space in the heart of downtown and our requirements to operate now have to go beyond this facility,” said Dick. “This is the perfect project to bridge our relationship with the community as a good corporate citizen.”
Elementis’ Milwaukee facility has also participated in other restoration projects since 2013, including establishing “fish habitat hotels” on the building’s dock, directly on the shore of Milwaukee River.
Now in 2020, Elementis’ efforts have played a major role in not only the return of local fish to the river, but also in the return of native beavers and river otters to the ecosystem.
“Actually, we have been watching and reducing our air, water, and land discharges for the last five years,” said Utkarsh Patel, Elementis Milwaukee Plant Manager.
Patel obtained certification for the Alliance for Water Stewardship, awarding the Elementis Milwaukee site as an advanced water steward facility that has zero discharge to the sewer system, outside of sanitary water.
“Everyone at the plant has been involved and supportive of our eco-conscious projects over the past few years, and the response to the mural is no different,” said Patel.
“During this COVID-19 pandemic when people are looking to get out and do something, the mural provides a beautiful nature-themed spot to relax and celebrate the beauty of the waterfront,” explained Dick. “It has become a beacon for the community and the employees hope it inspires others to be more environmentally conscious.”
Elementis’ dedication to preserving the Milwaukee River’s ecosystem and the improvement of the downtown area is extended further with the help of Harbor District Inc., Justin Suarez and the support of the Milwaukee community.
Elementis has a history of doing its part to improve the environment at its locations worldwide and the efforts of the Milwaukee plant to reduce emissions and waste fits into company-wide sustainability initiatives and best practice methods.