When Carbonfund.org Foundation was created ten years ago with the motto “reduce what you can, offset what you can’t™”, we knew we were positioning ourselves as the last-in-line solution in sustainability plans. The climate change education component to our mission is a very important one, and a significant portion of our website is dedicated to providing ways that businesses and individuals can reduce their carbon footprint before considering carbon offsetting strategies.
This approach has attracted businesses that take seriously their responsibility to seek out recycling, reuse, energy efficiency and emissions reduction opportunities. Fireclay Tile, a California-based sustainable tile manufacturer, is a great example.
“We are scavengers at heart and scrappy when it comes to saving resources; therefore we are committed to finding new and innovative ways to reuse cast off materials, and to incorporate sustainability into all levels of our manufacturing process, explains Eric Edelson, CEO of Fireclay Tile. “We chose to partner with Carbonfund.org simply because tile is heavy, and we wanted to offset the carbon footprint created by shipping our tile all over the world.”
Fireclay Tile’s Carbonfree® Business and Shipping program is a final step in the company’s commitment to environmental sustainability. Fireclay uses Carbonfund.org’s online business calculator to compute annual carbon emissions from office energy usage, business travel, and product shipping and delivery. The resulting offset donation supports forestry initiatives around the world that sequester carbon dioxide in formal third-party validated, verified and audited projects.
Fireclay’s unique process includes made-to-order tile using recycled materials and sustainable manufacturing practices in their California operations. Their recycled clay body boasts of over 70% recycled materials, which include post-consumer glass, granite dust, and porcelain from toilets collected to back water conservation efforts in the Bay Area. Fireclay’s glass tiles line is composed of 100% recycled glass from local window and solar panel production industries.
Fireclay maintains onsite recycling practices that include water reclamation at cutting and mixing stations, along with rainwater capture at their Aromas, CA factory. Glaze overspray is captured at each glazing station and is included with all scrap material and anything considered defective, then crushed into an aggregate for making the recycled clay. All orders are packaged for shipment using 100% recycled boxes, reused shipping crates, and sawdust from a local furniture manufacturer used to cushion shipments.
A fine example of “reduce what you can, offset what you can’t™”, Fireclay Tile is walking the walk, and Carbonfund.org is proud to assist in that last step.
Among the benefits of our Carbonfree® Business Partnership for small companies are program affordability, applicability to businesses in all industries, and ease of utilizing the program benefits. The program simplifies the process of neutralizing operational emissions and creates the opportunity for any business to become carbon neutral.
A great example of a small business that recognized these benefits is Brynmorgen Press, a small publisher located in Brunswick, Maine that specializes in books and videos about jewelrymaking, metalsmithing, and design. Tim McCreight started Brynmorgen Press in 1985 to provide practical, high quality textbooks on metalworking and design.
“We are committed to creating books, but recognize the need to replenish the trees required for our products,” explains Tim. “By supporting reforestation, renewable energy, and energy efficiency projects through Carbonfund.org, we have become Carbonfree®.”
To augment its environmental commitments, Brynmorgen Press recycles office waste and prints on recycled paper with soy inks. To conserve energy, Tim and his team wear jackets in the office on cold days and go barefoot in the summer!
Tim McCreight started Brynmorgen Press after he'd published two books with commercial publishers. He thought he might enjoy getting involved in the design and production aspects of publishing, and apparently he was right. Three decades later, he's still writing, designing, and illustrating books, and he’s able to maintain a Carbonfree® operation easily and affordably through Carbonfund.org.
An approved 1% for the Planet nonprofit partner, Carbonfund.org Foundation is leading the fight against global warming, making it easy and affordable for any individual, business or organization to reduce & offset their climate impact and hasten the transition to a clean energy future.
Since 2007, Carbonfund.org has enjoyed support of almost two dozen 1% for the Planet member businesses. Collectively, these 1% FTP members have neutralized almost 31 million pounds of greenhouse gas emissions by donating all or part of their annual 1% donations to this organization. In some cases, these businesses have gone above and beyond their 1% commitment, making additional donations to support energy efficiency, renewable energy, and forestry projects around the world. That 31 million pounds of emissions is equivalent to the amount of carbon dioxide sequestered by 11,500 acres of US forestland each year.
Several of these companies first discovered Carbonfund.org through their 1% FTP membership, and they have benefited from the programs that Carbonfund.org offers to donating businesses.
Here are some key examples of how this partnership has worked to benefit 1% businesses, Carbonfund.org, and most importantly, the Planet!
Moxie Bookkeeping of New York, NY, a full-charge accounting services firm, discovered Carbonfund.org through its 1% for the Planet relationship six years ago and decided to join the CarbonFree® Partner program for small businesses. A portion of Moxie Bookkeeping’s 1% FTP pledge funds the annual CarbonFree® Partnership program, and in return, Moxie Bookkeeping enjoys the benefits of the program including use of the CarbonFree® Partner logo, a Partner Page on Carbonfund.org’s website, and blogs about Moxie Bookkeeping’s sustainability commitments.
“Carbonfund.org was an easy pick for me,” explains Ean Murphy, founder of Moxie Bookkeeping. “While living in NYC lets us make the most of public transportation, wind powered energy and recycled office supplies, there is always more we can do to help offset our carbon footprint, and Carbonfund.org has a great reputation. I'm proud to have been a partner for the past seven years.”
GoodLight Natural Candles of Ridgway, CO also found Carbonfund.org through its 1% FTP pledge. Owner David Callicott began by joining the CarbonFree® Small Business Partnership program but took the relationship to the next stage by working with Carbonfund.org to calculate its total annual operational carbon footprint, including all office energy usage, business travel and product shipping emissions. GoodLight Natural Candles now makes a larger donation to Carbonfund.org, still within its 1% FTP pledge, to ensure that the company is truly CarbonFree® in all areas of its operations.
With the motto of “Live Give Run,” Charm City Run, a Maryland-based athletic shoes retailer with five store locations, an online store, and a running race events organizer, places a high priority on its charitable giving. Involved in almost a million dollars of charitable donations to Maryland-area and national organizations, Charm City Run donates a portion of its 1% FTP pledge to Bethesda, MD-based Carbonfund.org.
"Making a difference has never been this easy,” says Tom Mansfield of Charm City Run. “Carbonfund.org encourages individuals and businesses to control what they can. There are basic steps that we should all be following to be as responsible as we can. Carbonfund.org helps to make this possible and they will continue to receive support from us because of this."
Another 1% FTP member, Eagle Wing Tours, recognizes that its whale-watching tours are dependent on healthy oceans and marine life. To mitigate the effects of any tour-related emissions, Eagle Wing Tours undertook a complete analysis of their tour operation’s carbon footprint, from office operations through all fuel used by their tour vessels, in order to become the first carbon neutral whale-watching tour operator in Canada. Eagle Wing Tours makes an annual carbon emissions offsetting donation to Carbonfund.org that exceeds their 1% FTP pledge, but the commitment to environmental responsibility is worth the additional costs. This year, Eagle Wing Tours and Co-owner Brett Soberg received two industry awards for its environmental stewardship.
“We are trying to redefine what we think a model wildlife tour company is,” explains Brett Soberg, Co-owner and Captain at Eagle Wing Tours. “Spotting that whale is the cherry on top of an already very comprehensive marine experience. What we can do to protect these species by supporting education, conservation and responsible business is where we really count.”
Carbonfund.org offers a range of programs to all businesses and encourages 1% for the Planet members to complete a complimentary analysis of their annual carbon footprint. This is part of the educational mission of Carbonfund.org and will help 1% FTP members determine the best ways to neutralize a portion or all of their annual carbon emissions.
The collective efforts of these 1% FTP members are making a measurable difference in supporting carbon emissions reduction and clean air projects around the world, while returning valuable marketing advantages and leadership status in environmental stewardship to the member companies. If assessing, reducing and neutralizing all or a portion of the carbon footprint of your business is an important initiative, contact Carbonfund.org to discuss how your 1% for the Planet pledge can help you achieve your goals.
ENFIELD, NH May 8, 2013 – Leading Edge Design Group (LEDG), a leading national provider of energy optimization services, announced today that it will offset its carbon emissions with the Carbonfund.org Foundation, one of the country's leading carbon offset organizations. In addition to their existing effort to reduce emissions by advancing corporate recycling initiatives, improving office-wide sustainable products and systems procurement, and establishing team car-pooling mandates for customer visits to reduce travel related emission, LEDG’s CarbonFree® program participation supports their employees, partners, and customers who are striving to increase their own commitment to carbon neutrality.
“We are proud of our ongoing efforts to help our customers significantly reduce their carbon footprint but understand that this effort necessitates travel and the associated consumption of natural resources, “ said Todd Boucher, Principal, Leading Edge Design Group. “Our partnership with Carbonfund.org allows us to maintain our commitment to our clients while offsetting the carbon emissions required to support the successful implementation of our solutions.”
LEDG’s emissions offset purchase will go toward supporting reforestation projects in the US and abroad.
“LEDG has taken a significant step in recognizing that, despite concerted efforts to reduce operational emissions, there remains a portion of their carbon footprint that cannot yet be eliminated,” explains Eric Carlson, President of Carbonfund.org. “By becoming a CarbonFree® Business Partner, LEDG joins leading businesses and organizations around the world that have made this simple and affordable commitment to neutralize all annual carbon emissions and support our carbon reduction projects.”
ABOUT LEADING EDGE DESIGN GROUP Leading Edge Design Group is a leading national provider of energy optimization services that delivers significant energy savings to the public and private marketplaces through efficient data center designs and emerging LED lighting and wireless lighting control technologies. Founded in 2007 with the goal of pursuing, promoting, and providing the finest energy optimization solutions available, we help our customers minimize the environmental impact of their businesses while improving operational reliability and reducing costs. Leading Edge Design Group is dedicated to encouraging, challenging, and contributing to energy industry innovation with an ongoing commitment to our community and our environment. Visit us at http://www.ledesigngroup.com, review our work in the photo gallery, and connect with us on Twitter @ledesigngroup.
Even the most environmentally sensitive businesses know that their annual operations contribute to the increase in carbon emissions in our atmosphere, but the businesses that are truly committed to operational sustainability are taking simple and affordable steps to reduce their carbon footprint.
For the past six years, CarbonFree® Business Partner Arbor Teas has neutralized its annual operational emissions and its product shipment emissions in partnership with Carbonfund.org. Arbor Teas retails one of the largest selections of USDA-certified organic loose leaf teas from around the globe, most of which is Fair Trade, through its on-line store. In addition, Arbor Teas is committed to making a positive impact on the environment and has taken many steps to reduce emissions by offering only organic teas, reducing and “greening” its packaging and using renewable energy sources. However, their teas come from all corners of the world, so the shipping emissions are unavoidable. To mitigate these emissions, Arbor Teas has maintained a CarbonFree® Shipping program to offset the carbon footprint of annual product shipment emissions, and to offset all internal operational emissions, by supporting Carbonfund.org’s renewable energy, energy efficiency and reforestation projects.
“It makes no sense at all to sell an organic product if the method of delivering it to our customers is environmentally harmful,” says Jeremy Lopatin. “Although we do everything we can to reduce our carbon footprint, we’re happy to partner with Carbonfund.org to offset what we can’t avoid… yet!”
Almost three years ago, Arbor Teas became the first tea company to deliver its full line of organic loose teas in 100% backyard compostable packaging. With the release of this next generation packaging, Arbor Teas advanced its environmental mission, continuing to lead the tea industry through its staunch commitment to sustainable business practices. For the first time ever, tea drinkers are now able to compost their tea leaves AND tea packaging together in their home composting system. This innovative packaging is composed of a cellulose film made from wood pulp sourced from sustainably-managed trees, and the films used for Arbor Teas’ new packaging breaks down in a backyard compost setting.
Carbonfund.org applauds Arbor Teas’ long-term commitment to maintaining its CarbonFree® Operations and Shipping programs, and to its continuing innovation in the areas of product packaging and sourcing.
We all have a responsibility to reduce our carbon footprint and lessen the impact of global warming. That’s why the 2013 Green Inaugural Ball, aside from “greening” the event, has teamed up with Carbonfund.org to reduce its carbon footprint with two carbon offset projects: The Tensas River National Wildlife Refuge Reforestation Project and the New Bedford Landfill Gas-to-Energy Methane Project.
As a green event, we just couldn’t miss out on the opportunity to reduce the Green Ball’s climate impact, and help pave the road toward a clean energy future.
Tensas River National Wildlife Refuge Reforestation
The Tensas River National Wildlife Refuge Reforestation Project, located in Tallulah, LA., is dedicated to restoring native bottomland hardwood forests in the Lower Mississippi Alluvial Valley region of Northeastern Louisiana.
This area was once covered in dense forests, but now it supports less than 20% of its original 22 million forested acres due to decades of land conversion for agriculture. Why are forestry projects important? They help offset the effects of climate change, and help improve the quality of top soil, reduce and control erosion, protect and filter water while reducing the threat of flooding, produce oxygen and nutrients and provide habitats for wildlife.
New Bedford Landfill Gas-to-Energy Methane Project
This landfill gas-to-energy plant, located in Greater New Bedford, MA., not only produces 3.3 megawatts hours of clean electricity, but also reduces the amount of methane released into our atmosphere. Why is the destruction of methane important? It’s approximately 21 to 23 times more powerful as a greenhouse than carbon dioxide, and a major contributor to climate change. A major concern about climate change is the release of an enormous amount of methane –previously trapped in permafrost in frozen tundra areas like Siberia and Northern Canada – into our atmosphere.
Want to reduce your carbon footprint? Check out this list produced by Carbonfund.org on how you can do just that:
Haven’t purchased your 2013 Green Inaugural Ball ticket yet? Purchase them here: http://www.nwf.org/2013-green-inaugural-ball.aspx
Heading to the Green Ball? Don’t forget to tweet using the #GreenBall2013 hashtag.
Ecotourism continues to grow in popularity as environmentally-conscious travelers seek out adventures to natural environments while minimizing the negative ecological impacts of their trips. The International Ecotourism Society (TIES) has defined ecotourism as "responsible travel to natural areas that conserves the environment and improves the well-being of local people." New Carbonfund.org partner Quasar Expeditions offers eco-travel adventures through the unique ecosystems of Patagonia, while ensuring that all on-the-ground tour emissions are measured and mitigated through Carbonfund.org.
In order to uphold their commitment to environmentally sustainable tour operations, Quasar Expeditions chose to partner with Carbonfund.org to calculate the emissions generated by each tour vehicle then mitigate those emissions by supporting reforestation and bio-diversity preservation projects around the world.
“Our recent partnership with Carbonfund.org is a big step for Quasar Expeditions in making yet another positive contribution to conservation and sustainable tourism,” explains Fernando Diez, Director of Marketing and E-Commerce. “Although our adventures are methodically designed to leave very light footprints, we know that there is always some environmental impact, so we are now happy to be offsetting our carbon emissions through Carbonfund.org.”
When planning ecotourism excursions, it’s incumbent upon travelers to carefully review and seek out tour providers that are implementing sustainability practices to limit the environmental impact on the fragile habitats they visit. Eco-tour related emissions may be unavoidable, but measurement, reduction and neutralization of these emissions is a key component to maintaining responsible travel options while fighting the negative impacts of climate change.
Online shopping has exploded in recent years and has rapidly become the norm in many countries. According to a recent report by U.K.-based Interactive Media in Retail Group (IMRG), global business-to-consumer e-commerce sales will pass the $1.25 trillion mark by 2013, up 30% over total 2011 online retail shopping sales.
While studies have shown that online shopping may reduce carbon dioxide emissions by as much as 35 percent compared to traditional retail shopping, many forward-thinking online retailers recognize that “green shoppers” expect even more in environmental sustainability.
New CarbonFree® Business Partner Tradewinds Imports, offering modern bathroom vanities and contemporary bathroom furnishings only through its online store, made the decision to neutralize its annual operational emissions by supporting Carbonfund.org’s global forestry projects. In addition, many of their vanities and bathroom furnishings are made from 100% reclaimed, recycled or sustainably forested hardwoods. Most of their vanities are hand-hewn, rather than machine-made, reducing carbon emissions during the manufacturing process.
“The global environment and the health of our forests is of the utmost importance to Tradewinds Imports, and we are immensely proud to announce our work with Carbonfund.org to help offset carbon emissions and repopulate the trees of our earth,” states Todd Harmon, CEO of Tradewinds Imports. “Carbonfund.org is a fantastic organization and we are very excited to aid them in their carbon reduction efforts. Being good custodians of our forests is vital to our lives as well as our business, so we are delighted to help Carbonfund.org meet their reforestation and avoided de-forestation goals.”
Carbonfund.org’s online retail business partners help to set the bar higher for reducing carbon emissions related to the shopping experience, and Tradewinds Imports joins its sister online stores Bath Gems and Patio Productions as CarbonFree® Business Leaders.
More than a couple of our past blog posts have covered how increasingly extreme weather is the product of climate change. However, have you stopped to ask yourself what that really means? How will climate change affect us and future generations? What things that we currently enjoy will be unavailable to our children?
A recent article covers some things that global warming is likely to ruin for our kids; things such as coffee, chocolate, strawberries. And the list isn’t limited to agricultural food items. Say goodbye to blazing fast Wi-Fi. Also your favorite vacation spot or even your home may be underwater in a few, short decades time. The country you live in may disappear. The article has some shocking images of Greenland melting away.
So what’s it going to take to help preserve the Earth as we know it? Global carbon emissions need to be reduced 80% by 2050. The U.S. has already pledged to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from 2005 levels by approximately 17%. Eventually legislation will be enacted increasing the goal to a 30% reduction in 2025 and a 42% reduction in 2030, with the ultimate goal of reducing emissions 83% by 2050.
Do your part in reducing carbon emissions and getting us closer to meeting the goals outlined above. Start by switching your Internet browser to www.envirosearch.org. Your regular, daily Internet search activities will begin contributing to renewable energy, reforestation, and energy efficiency projects. Then go to www.carbonfund.org for ideas on how to reduce your carbon footprint and offset carbon emissions. By working together, and each doing our part, we can change the fate of the planet.
The National Resources Defense Council (NRDC) released a report on Wednesday, May 23, 2012 that estimates 150,000 additional American deaths in the country’s top 40 cities by 2100 due to the excessive heat caused by climate change.
The top three deadliest cities outlined in the analysis of peer-reviewed data include Louisville, Detroit, and Cleveland. Some other cities projected to have thousands of heat related deaths by the end of the century are Baltimore, Boston, Chicago, Columbus, Denver, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, Pittsburgh, Providence, St. Louis and Washington, D.C.
Why cities? Because that is where two-thirds of the U.S. population lives, and many municipal services there are not prepared to help people effectively beat the heat. Urban areas have high concentrations of poor with little to no access to air conditioning. Although everyone is at risk, children, the elderly, the obese, and those on medication are the most vulnerable.
We’re already seeing how global warming can kill with hundreds of heat related deaths annually. Extreme heat causes heat exhaustion and heat stroke and worsens illnesses such as cardiovascular disease and kidney disease. In 2006, a two-week long heat wave in California caused 655 deaths, 1,620 excess hospitalizations, and more than 16,000 additional emergency room visits, resulting in nearly $5.4 billion in costs. However, Chicago had an even deadlier record-setting heat wave in 1995 when more than 700 people died due to the excessive heat.
Some cities are learning from their experiences or heeding the warnings, and strengthening their municipal services. Chicago, Philadelphia, and Seattle have already put measures in place to lessen the risk from excessive heat days. Measures include improving the city’s heat warning system, emergency services, and establishing cooling centers.
There is hope; we can save lives by reducing emissions and improving emergency services. Some examples of climate change mitigation are supporting reforestation projects and using more renewable energy such as wind energy.
Read the report and get more information at http://www.nrdc.org/globalwarming/killer-heat/.