Business & Finance

Westfield Businessman, Partner Hope to Save Rain Forests and Improve Lives with Global Ecology Corp.

a3726cf0ea6547b81ebb_69d5a0b7b18430e66779_20180102_113247.jpg
Charlie Cacici and Joe Battiato, founders of Global Ecology Corp. Credits: Joan Lowell Smith
a3726cf0ea6547b81ebb_69d5a0b7b18430e66779_20180102_113247.jpg

WESTFIELD, NJ — Joe Battiato and Charlie Cacici are on a mission to save the rain forests and improve the lives of people living in developing nations. 

Cacici, a Westfield resident, founded Global Ecology Corp. in 2012 with Battiato, who lives in Woodbridge.

Both men are 63 and have spent 35 years on Wall Street — Cacici with Solomon brothers and American Express and 12 years leading RMG, a credit risk management/due diligence firm in the residential mortgage sector. Battiato worked for Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley and is a Hedge Fund Manager with Ellington Management Group.

Sign Up for E-News

Cacici, an ordained an evangelical minister since 1999, also serves as an elder at Calvary Tabernacle in Cranford.  

“He’s always been a man of integrity and we both love helping people,” Battiato said.

Back when the two men discovered their mutual passion to preserve the rain forests that proliferate in the Congo and other African nations, they said, they joined forces to resolve the destruction of forests by companies only interested in selling products extracted from the downed trees.

“In today's world,” Cacici said, “countries with large rain forests allow logging companies to clear out the rain forests, losing one to two percent of rain forests annually.”

“Our mission is to assist countries such as the Democratic Republic of the Congo monetize the carbon credits generated by the protection of their rain forest,” Battiato said. “Through this approach, we would save the rain forests and positively change the lives of the indigenous people. The ultimate goal is the creation of jobs and infrastructure improvements, ie., building hospitals, schools, homes, roads, etc., for the villages closest to the protected rain forest.”

Carbon credits and carbon markets are a component of natural and international attempts to mitigate the growth and concentration of greenhouse gases, Battiato explained.

“For example, one carbon credit represents the offset of one ton of carbon dioxide, or in some markets, carbon dioxide equivalent gases,” he said.

Cacici chimed in, “Carbon credits are issued in two markets: industrial and REDD — Reduction in the Degradation and Deforestation of the rain forest. Industrial carbon credit offsets are generated by businesses using methods of operation to generate electricity in ways that don't make use of fossil fuels. Those businesses include solar fields, wind farms, nuclear and hydro power.”

Agricultural processes that generate carbon credits are the prevention of rain forest deforestation, replacing trees, recycling of organic waste through microbial digesters or composting methods, he said.

REDD carbon credits are the results of photosynthesis: trees ingest carbon dioxide and expel oxygen, Cacici explained.

“This process is nature’s delicate balance in scrubbing our atmosphere and providing us with our life blood: oxygen,” he said. “These credits are only granted in cases where the country actually changes the activities that destroy the rain forest. In our case, they granted us concessions to protect the rain forest instead of providing lumber companies concessions to cut down the trees.”

“Rain forests clean the environment of pollution and protect plant and animal species that thrive because of the environment, as long as the rain forests continue to be preserved,” Battiato emphasized.

“Joe began to have a vision of how to work in the carbon credit markets,” Cacici said.  “We wanted to bring change by assisting these third world countries in realizing the financial benefit of preserving the rain forest by quantifying and monetizing carbon credits. Not only are we saving the rain forests but by selling carbon credits we have a fiduciary responsibility to use the proceeds from the sale to spend that money in countries in the form of infrastructure improvements.”

Cacici expanded on their focus.

“The Minister of the Environment, along with the Governor of the Province and the local chieftans, will prioritize what projects we’ll build first,” he said. “These transactions will benefit the local population, not fill the coffers of politicians.”

Cacici said that often organizations will go in and build, only to see the villages that they built deteriorating one year later.

“As part of our budget in developing a village,” Cacici said, “we will financially incentivize the local leadership to maintain the new status quo, while the children going to our schools begin to learn that they deserve a better life.  When they become adults, they’ll willingly embrace and maintain the new status quo. In order to bring long lasting change, you need to change a generation.”

Battiato said that they are about to start selling carbon credits to investors or philanthropists.  

“For example, universities recently came out with a mandate to be green by 2020. By buying carbon credits from our program, they’ll see their schools turn green. There’s a powerful social impact helping third world countries,” he said. “It’s a useful PR benefit to companies investing in these carbon credits. We need to educate people in order to turn inefficiency into opportunity.”

Battiato added, “It’s a win-win situation for everybody and the Congo is just the first of seven other countries we want to help.”

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Westfield

NJ Flags to Fly at Half-Staff for Jerry Green May 7

April 24, 2018

TRENTON, NJ — Governor Phil Murphy issued an executive order on Monday for New Jersey flags to be flown at half-staff at all state buildings and facilities on the day of the upcoming General Assembly session, scheduled for May 7, in memory of Assemblyman Jerry Green, former chair of the Union County Democratic Committee, who died last week.

On Thursday, Governor Murphy had said, ...

2018 Municipal Budget is on Collision Course with Principles of Financial Soundness & Stability

April 18, 2018

Having chaired the town council’s finance committee in the recent past, I appreciate the hard work that goes into developing a municipal budget for a town as large and dynamic as Westfield. But as I have expressed publicly and also to the mayor and my council colleagues, I do not support the adoption of Westfield’s 2018 municipal budget. Although the budget contains much that I ...

Upcoming Events

Tue, April 24, 4:00 PM

Westfield Memorial Library, Westfield

Westfield Memorial Library Spring Book Sale

Arts & Entertainment

Carousel_image_5307a8f625870288b3e9_best_79fa8c672d731919f994_tap_building

Tue, April 24, 7:00 PM

Westfield Municipal Building, Westfield

Westfield Town Council Meeting

Government

Tue, April 24, 7:30 PM

Westfield

Westfield Board of Education Meeting

Education

Westfield Police Blotter: Residence Burglarized & More

April 18, 2018

April 11, 2018 10:23 a.m.

Raymond Rodgers, 56, of Westfield, NJ was arrested in the area of E. Broad Street. Rodgers was arrested pursuant to an unrelated traffic investigation. Rogers was transported to Westfield Police HQ without incident. At WPD HQ, Rodgers was processed and released after posting the full bail amount ($250). Rodgers was arrested on the strength of an outstanding Westfield ...

NJ07 Student Activists to Hold Town Hall on Gun Control

April 24, 2018

In less than a week, student activists from New Jersey’s Seventh Congressional District will be holding their Town Hall for Our Lives.

The town hall will take place in the meeting room of the Union Municipal Building from 7 to 9 p.m. Both Democratic and Republican candidates running for NJ07’s seat in the House of Representatives will be in attendance. At the event, they will ...

Ways to Increase Your Home's Equity

Sometimes you forget and don’t realize your home provides so much to your life. It brings along with it your dreams of the future, shelter to you and your family, a way to provide a better lifestyle, a better commute, a neighborhood, schools, community involvement and recreational facilities. But it also provides a way to save for the future. It does this by allowing you to build your ...

Westfield Community Thanks Crossing Guards for Valuable Service

Bob Lewis has been helping students safely cross the street at the corner of St. Mark’s Avenue and Sherman Street in Westfield for the past 22 years.

“I’m a fixture,” said Lewis, a crossing guard at Washington School who turns 90 years old in August.

“Whenever he is absent, students, parents and staff want to know ‘Where is Bob?’” ...

'The Sting' shimmers and shakes at Paper Mill

‘The Sting ‘slithers and shakes at Paper Mill Playhouse

By LIZ KEILL

MILLBURN, NJ – In a premiere production of “The Sting,” Harry Connick Jr. commands the Paper Mill Playhouse stage in Millburn.

Based on the sensational Paul Newman/Robert Redford film in 1973, the 1930s plot centers on a con game and gambling, sometimes on a train between New York and ...

Why We Keep Kosher

Why We Keep Kosher

This week's parshah, Shemini, introduces the Torah's dietary laws. Animals must chew their cud and have split hooves to be kosher, fish need fins and scales, and a list of forbidden fowl is enumerated.

To those of us in Jewish education, it is a continuing source of disappointment that so many Jews still believe the kosher laws to be outdated.

Hellenic Therapy Center

April 13, 2018

Dropping Off Our Kids At College – Learning How To Adjust

Hellenic Therapy Center

 

Whether your kid is a freshman entering college for the first time or returning back to college, there are so many emotions we experience as parents.  There are differences in a parent’s reaction to the departure of a first child, an only child or even the last child.  Feelings ...

Obituaries

Oct 21, 1944 - Apr 14, 2018
Kathleen A. Hertell passed away peacefully with family at her bedside on April 14, 2018. Loving ...
Read more

‘A Sad Day for Paterson’ as Police Officer Loses Life in Car Crash

April 23, 2018

PATERSON, NJ — On what Paterson Superior Officers Association President Mason Maher called “a sad day for Paterson,” a city police officer lost his life on Sunday after he was involved in a motor vehicle collision while on duty.

Several sources familiar with Sunday’s tragic accident have identified the fallen officer as Tamby Yagan, a 13-year veteran of the ...