As the U.S. sits on the sidelines, debating the validity of climate change, the rest of the world is making substantial investments in clean energy and sustainable technologies for the sake of the planet and the betterment of their economies.
“Going green” is estimated to be a $100 billion dollar business by the year 2017. Whether you believe in the science behind climate change or not, you cannot overlook the solid data that confirms the cost savings and efficiency gains of organizations that have embraced sustainability as a core value. Further, as an American you cannot deny the need to invest in clean energy as a way to strengthen our economy, our national security and provide a wholesome future for our children.
The business community, city leadership and entrepreneurs are coming together to find cost effective solutions to address climate change. The Sustainable Operations Summit is the premier forum for leading organizations to share best practices that benefit both the environment and the bottom line. The 2012 summit will bring together some of the world's brightest minds in sustainability in New York City during Earth Week to share innovative approaches to reduce our impact on the environment with a focus on energy, the built environment and resource conservation.
From the High Line to the Skyline, NYC plays the perfect host for the summit as it is home to some of the most inspiring green building and urban renewal projects in the world.
The Sustainable Operations Summit is produced by CraigMichaels, launched in 2002 and has since become one of the nation’s premier producers of senior level events. Their unique event format provides leaders with an intensive yet enjoyable way to better their business that saves both time and money. Linking Leaders is more than just their tagline; their core objective is to initiate and foster relationships that allow you to achieve your business goals.
As part of its sustainability initiatives, CraigMichaels offsets carbon dioxide emissions from staff travel and facility energy usage for its summits with Carbonfund.org.
Today’s blog highlights our Travel Category winner, JetBlue Airways. Carbonfund.org congratulates and thanks them for their commitment to sustainable practices and to the support of important external carbon reductions.
JetBlue views sustainability as synonymous with social responsibility and is committed to reducing the environmental impact of both their crew and their customers. Through the Jetting to Green initiatives, they are allowing a portal for customers to mitigate the climate impact of their travel through customized calculators on Carbonfund.org’s site. However, JetBlue is leading by example. For the past two years, JetBlue has offset 100% their own business travel, supporting carbon mitigation projects equivalent to the emissions of their crewmembers’ travels. This is all in addition to their annual Spring campaign, One Thing That’s Green, that encourages crewmembers and customers, in all of the 70+ cities that JetBlue serves, to do one thing for the environment. This month JetBlue will launch the 5th annual campaign, so be sure to visit www.jetblue.com/pledge to learn more on how you can do your One Thing That’s Green.
JetBlue has been able to partner with Carbonfund.org through the leadership of the Corporate Responsibility Department, and in particular, Icema Gibbs.
Corporate Risk Systems Limited (CRS) is a Health Safety and Environmental Training provider; CRS also offer Risk Management Consultancy and Training Solutions across Health, Safety and Environmental Sectors. From its UK base, it supports many international clients (currently across 51 countries worldwide) in large commercial, private and public organisations and of course insurance markets.
As a responsible organisation offering environmental and health and safety support to their clients, Corporate Risk Systems took direct action to evaluate its own operational emissions, developed and implemented a Carbon Reduction and Offset Policy, using Carbonfund.org to make Corporate Risk Systems CarbonFree®.
Every year since 2005, CRS has calculated its annual operational emissions from regular business activities, then made a donation to Carbonfund.org to purchase and retire the corresponding carbon credits in order to offset CRS annual emissions and thus become a CarbonFree® Health, Safety & Environmental Training and Risk management Consultancy organisation. The CRS carbon footprint calculation includes all employees’ business auto, rail and airline mileage. It also includes a calculation for the use of electrical energy by staff for laptops, PCs and projectors, heating and lighting of offices and training rooms, training materials and even includes a figure for CRS sponsorship of a classic Mini Cooper racing car, which in its decoration, promotes environmental protection and Carbonfund.org. All of this data is converted using the UK Government’s DEFRA conversion tables into the CRS Carbon Footprint.
"It’s down to each individual and organisation to accept its environmental impact, if sustainable development is to turn from a concept into reality. Climate Change is one of the most serious threats facing the world today, and it is everyone’s responsibility to reduce carbon emissions at source where possible, and offset our residual carbon footprint." Richard Ball – Head of Environment
(reprinted from Malk Sustainability Partners blog site: http://www.malksp.com/blog/)
At Malk Sustainability Partners, we advise companies on how they can reduce their environmental footprints and profit from doing so. As advisors on sustainability, we are passionate about ‘walking the talk’ with regard to managing our corporate environmental footprint. Toward this end, we are proud of a few initiatives we have underway, from electronic filing of documents to our team’s consistent leveraging of web conferencing and public transit. Additionally, we renewed our partnership with Carbonfund.org to offset our small carbon footprint (you can view this year’s Carbon Offset Certificate). Given MSP’s focus on sustainability, we believe in carbon neutrality for our own operations and our partnership with Carbonfund.org has made this goal achievable, easy, and inspiring.
Carbonfund.org is a leading exchange dedicated to carbon offset trading. While it is trusted by large companies such as Dell, Jet Blue, Staples, and Motorola, Carbonfund also makes offset purchasing understandable and easy for small businesses and individuals. The website provides a suite of tools, including a user friendly carbon calculator, to compute your business’s impact; it then offers an array of opportunities to mitigate that impact through contributions to projects which produce carbon credits. These projects, which are to some degree environmental good deeds, span the gamut from landfill gas capture (methane, which seeps out of landfills and is a potent greenhouse gas), clean technology financing, or afforestation (planting trees which create a ‘carbon sink’ as the trees grow and absorb CO2). By buying the credits you are essentially buying a share of the positive environmental impact of these projects to account for your own footprint. MSP purchased 30 metric tons of CO2 credits this year; offsetting our carbon impact while supporting afforestation and reforestation projects.
So spring is here and you want to start your spring cleaning, but do it in an earth friendly manner. Here is some information about what to do to reduce our impact on the planet and our own health.
You want to look for and avoid detergents with alkylphenolethoxylates (APEs), such as nonylphenolethoxylate (NPE), which have been found to cause human health problems such as endocrine disruption.
Use chlorine and phosphate-free products to wash dishes. Also keep an eye out for products that contain phthalates and prevent their use.
The United States Geological Survey found breakdown products of laundry detergents in 70% of North American streams. These chemicals can cause harm to fish, frogs, turtles and other aquatic life. Studies have shown that even low-level exposure has reduced the number of fertilized trout eggs and caused reduced embryo survival and abnormal embryos in another fish, the Japanese Medaka.
If every household in the U.S. replaced one bottle of 25 oz. petroleum-based dishwashing liquid with a plant-derived product, we could save 5.3 million gallons of oil, which is equivalent to removing 9,000 cars from the road for one year.
Here are a few other ideas you can do to help make a difference:
- Create and use your own effective, non-toxic cleaning products using simple and inexpensive ingredients like vinegar and baking soda.
- Buy only from companies that list all product ingredients on the package.
- Tell Congress to require companies to disclose all ingredients in household cleaners on product labels and to replace toxic chemicals with safer alternatives.
Check out this link for some green cleaning recipes: http://www.womensvoices.org/protect-your-health/cleaning-products/green-cleaning-recipes/.
We began our journey to mitigate the impact of climate change in 2003. We had an internal goal to become carbon neutral by 2012 and for the last several years worked towards this goal by improving energy efficiency and increasing use of low-carbon resources.
Why we wanted to be carbon neutral?
- To help focus the attention of our customers, associates, teammembers and shareholders on energy efficiency
- To set up a process of continual improvement in our carbon management
- To introduce a financial incentive for reducing our carbon footprin tand resource use
- To catalyze the adoption of resource efficiency and drive energy use reductions in our communities
- To prepare in the long-term for regulations and fiscal measure thatare likely to be introduced
Some critics also say that companies that offset would be better to spend this money onreducing emissions within their businesses. We have invested in offsetting projects that achieve social benefits as well as carbon reductions at the same time.
We have also been concerned about criticism of the accreditation of theoffsetting schemes. We did a lot of work to make sure that we were following a properly accredited scheme. We purchase credits under theVoluntary Carbon Standard, a recognizable and reliable independent standard for Verified Emissions Reductions. This means that the project that we have supported comply with the additionality criteria of the Clean Development Mechanism, and so would not have occurred without the revenue created through selling emission reduction credits.
These are some of the reasons we chose to work with Carbonfund.org and we are happy to contribute towards climate change projects through Carbonfund.org.
-The En3 Sustainability Solutions Team
About En3 Sustainability Solutions
En3 is an international expert in sustainability. Since 2003, En3 has been steadily guiding several corporations, governments and institutions in effectively and efficiently pursuing the path of sustainable development.
En3 provides a range of consultancy services, pragmatic solutions, software products and education programs in the field of sustainability. Our services include green building consultancy, building simulations, energy analysis and improvement, green retrofits for existing buildings, carbon footprint calculations, sustainability reporting, life cycle assessments (LCA) and environmental product declarations (EPD).
En3 offers software solutions for GHG management (ECARB&EPERT) and corporate sustainability reporting (ESTAR). Based on the newly launched Product Lifecycle Accounting Standard, En3 has launched EPACE software for product sustainability.
En3 Academy focuses on imparting high-quality green education and its specially designed green curriculum will help educate architects, engineers, designers and sustainability professionals on practical aspects of applied sustainability.
For further information, please visit http://www.en3online.com
With Earth Day approaching, it’s a good time to think about caring for the Earth in everything you do. So, how do you care for your skin and hair in the most environmentally-responsible way? The folks at Earth Science Naturals have been making natural body care products from clean, natural ingredients for over 30 years. With every product they formulate, they set out to make something that will deliver great results at a great value, without ever compromising on quality.
Earth Science Naturals cares about its customers and about the planet we all share, and is committed to providing environmentally safe skin, body, and hair care without irritants, soaps, petroleum, toxins, heavy metals, artificial colors, animal ingredients or parabens. While so many other companies are owned by large corporate parents, Earth Science Naturals remains a family business, putting their hearts into the products they make. Earth Science Naturals is motivated to make a positive contribution to customers’ lives and to our planet. As a CarbonFree® Business Partner for the past five years, Earth Science Naturals has proven their commitment to environmental responsibility.
Earth Science Naturals products are available at many national retailers and through their online shopping site. Do something good for yourself and the Earth this Earth Day, and try some of the extraordinary skin and hair products from Earth Science Naturals.
It’s springtime – time for sprucing up your outdoor living and lollygagging space with comfortable, stylish and eco-conscious lawn and patio furniture. Loll Designs is a modern outdoor furniture and accessories manufacturer specializing in the use of recycled materials to make affordable, long-lasting, no-maintenance outdoor furniture. Loll's contemporary outdoor furniture is perfect for people who want to add a unique and modern aesthetic to their outdoor spaces. Loll Designs feature furniture and accessories in an assortment of styles and colors.
Loll is best known for their modern Adirondack chair, but their furniture line includes chairs, tables, benches, a kid’s line, accessories and containers. All of their recycled outdoor furniture is designed and manufactured in the USA with a focus on sustainable outdoor furniture manufacturing practices. Unlike most outdoor patio furniture, Loll's modern furniture requires no seasonal storage or maintenance and all Loll furniture is recyclable.
Loll began as a way to utilize excess material from the construction of TrueRide brand municipal skate parks. An estimated eight recycled milk jugs go into each pound of a Loll Adirondack Chair or about 400 milk jugs per chair. The first Loll Adirondack chairs looked a lot like their skate ramps, with tan colored surfaces that were made from the same materials as the skating ramps. Eventually, Loll migrated to all post-consumer plastics for Loll Designs, due to the durability and color variety.
Loll also believes in promoting environmentally sustainable practices in its own operations. Starting in 2008, Loll staff has taken a field day each year around Earth Day (frost permitting in MN) to plant a tree for each order received in the preceding year. Loll offsets all annual operational emissions by making a donation to Carbonfund.org for every package shipped in order to offset the carbon generated during shipping.
So check out the stylish, durable and versatile outdoor furniture at Loll Designs and join the modern lollygaggers lounging in environmentally-responsible style.