Is it possible to be stylish while remaining environmentally responsible? This is one of the key questions that online luxury retailer ETHICA set out to address, and they’ve incorporated many components into their sustainability initiatives in order to achieve it.
Becoming CarbonFree® was an early step along the sustainability path for ETHICA. Through the CarbonFree® Business Partnership program, ETHICA’s donations neutralize their annual operational emissions while supporting carbon emissions reduction projects around the world. ETHICA also offers eco-friendly packaging and carbon-neutral shipping with every order.
"As a retailer devoted to promoting ethical and sustainable fashion, we are naturally committed to minimizing our environmental impact and remaining a carbon-neutral business,” explains Carolina Cantor, Co-Founder of ETHICA. “SHOPETHICA.COM's corporate values align with Carbonfund.org’s mission and its efforts in the fight against climate change."
The company is based in a LEED-certified green building in New York City and carefully selects the designers it promotes to ensure that they are adhering to ethical and environmentally sustainable practices.
ETHICA’s featured designers focus on manufacturing locally to reduce the environmental impact of transporting materials. Most items are made by hand or in small batches in an effort to decelerate the “fast fashion” cycle, as well as to avoid the environmental impact of machine-driven assembly lines. They select quality materials and pay their producers fairly, which in turn contributes to more realistic prices that challenge the idea that fashion is disposable. Many of the fashion items found on SHOPETHICA.com are made using salvaged, reclaimed, recycled or upcycled materials, as well as natural and organic fibers that can be more easily recycled or that will decompose or biodegrade more quickly than synthetics. ETHICA seeks out designs that are timeless, quality products designed to have long life-cycles, rather than throwaway pieces to be discarded as part of a relentless trend cycle.
ETHICA is helping to drive the trend away from throwaway fashions towards designs with longevity and durability in mind, enabling those who own their products to consume less. Their leadership in sustainable business practices positions ETHICA in the front of fashion-forward and environmentally responsible luxury e-retailing.
So, you're having a baby...Congratulations! What better gift to give your new bundle of joy than fresh clean air! Whether you’re a brand-new parent, busy raising kids or playing with your grandkids, caring for our environment to ensure its health for future generations should be a top concern.
One of the ways you can help support a healthy environment is to carefully select the products you purchase and the businesses you choose to support. Looking for strong sustainability programs and commitments to environmentally-responsible operations will enable you to support those companies that are doing their part to protect the environment.
For the past six years, CarbonFree® Business Partner Baby Rain, a leading online baby products retailer operating both www.pamperedtot.com and www.babychecklist.com, has neutralized all carbon emissions from its annual business operations and product shipping.
"Our business is booming! With our success comes a need for more packaging materials, marketing collateral, and fuel to power the vehicles used to deliver our products to thousands of customers across the USA and around the world,” explains Greg Charlap, Owner of Baby Rain. “As a business, we not only want to offset our growing footprint, but would also like to educate our customers about this worthy and necessary cause. Carbonfund.org helps us do both!"
Through the CarbonFree® Business Partnership, Baby Rain makes investments in carbon-offsetting projects, such as renewable energy, energy efficiency, and reforestation. Each project plays an important role in the fight against global warming.
In addition, Baby Rain plants a tree through Carbonfund.org for every stroller order they receive - a great way to give back and replace resources they use. These ongoing commitments to environmental responsibility make Baby Rain a great choice for baby care products from a company that’s helping to protect the planet’s future.
CarbonFree® Business Partner Eagle Wing Tours and its co-owner and captain Brett Soberg received two environmental awards last week, confirming the Vancouver-based whale watching tourism company's leadership in environmental sustainability.
Brett has worked to ‘create a new model for what a responsible whale watching company should look like on and off the water.’ Soberg received the Community Environmental Leader category Capital Regional District (CRD) EcoStar Award, which honors the work of an individual who has continually gone the extra mile to help steward our environment and engage in conservation. Eagle Wing Tours received the Tourism Sustainability Award at the Tourism Vancouver Island's 50th Annual Conference, which recognizes a tourism business in the Vancouver Island Region that has set out to minimize their environmental impact, conserve natural resources, respect local cultures and benefit local communities.
Eagle Wing Tours is Canada’s first 100% carbon neutral whale watching company and the only one to support 1% For the Planet. Eagle Wing Tours achieves its carbon neutral status by calculating its annual operational emissions with assistance from Synergy Enterprises & Synergy Sustainability Institute and submitting the analysis to Carbonfund.org for review. Eagle Wing Tours then offsets its verified annual operational emissions through Carbonfund.org by supporting renewable energy projects. The 100% carbon neutral program also satisfies Eagle Wing Tours' 1% For the Planet commitment.
“We are trying to redefine what a wildlife tour company is. Spotting that whale is the cherry on top of an all ready very comprehensive marine experience,” explains Brett Soberg. “What we can do to protect these species by supporting education, conservation and responsible business is where we really count. We selected to support Carbonfund.org due their non-profit designation which supports our 1% For the Planet membership.”
Other environmental efforts underway with Eagle Wing Tours include the Wild for Whales adoption program, the Earth Day Garbage Showdown and the World Oceans day Celebration at Fisherman’s Wharf. With sustainability integrated into the core of how they do business, Eagle Wing Tours will continue to lead the way for responsible eco tourism in Victoria and around the world.
REPRINTED FROM PRESS RELEASE FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – September 24, 2013
Owner of Eagle Wing Tours, Brett Soberg, receives two environmental leadership awards this week
"VICTORIA'S 1ST AWARD WINNING WHALE WATCHING TOUR COMPANY"
Locally-owned company Eagle Wing Tours received two environmental stewardship awards in two days. Recognized at the CRD Ecostar Awards on September 24, 2013 and the Vancouver Island Tourism Awards on September 25, 2013, Eagle Wing Tours is leading the eco-tourism movement here in Victoria. Owner, Brett Soberg, has worked to ‘create a new model for what a responsible whale watching company should look like on and off the water.’
Soberg received the Community Environmental Leader category CRD Ecostar Award which honours the work of an individual who has continually gone the extra mile to help steward our environment and engage in conservation. Eagle Wing Tours received the Tourism Sustainability Award from Tourism Vancouver Island, which recognizes a tourism business in the Vancouver Island Region that has set out to minimize their environmental impact, conserve natural resources, respect local cultures and benefit local communities.
Eagle Wing Tours is Canada’s first 100% carbon neutral whale watching company and the only one to support 1% For the Planet. Other efforts include the Wild for Whales adoption program, the Earth Day Garbage Showdown and the World Oceans day Celebration at Fisherman’s Wharf. With sustainability integrated into the core of how they do business, Eagle Wing Tours will continue to lead the way for responsible eco tourism in Victoria and around the world.
The World Tourism Organization estimates that “global spending on eco tourism is increasing at a higher rate than the industry-wide average growth” and “more than a third of travelers are found to favour environmentally-friendly tourism and are willing to pay between 2 and 40 per cent more for this experience.” Social and environmental awareness, especially in the younger demographic, is creating increased demand for eco-friendly choices. Some local leaders are embracing this new market and adjusting their internal operations, products and services to match the changing landscape of Victoria’s second largest industry.
“What this means is a total shift in how consumers purchase and, therefore; how businesses must act. A handful of companies, such as Eagle Wing Tours, are setting the bar high for other businesses.”- Jill Doucette, Founder of Synergy Enterprises & Synergy Sustainability Institute.
Eagle Wing Tours
What does consistent environmental leadership look like? Over the past six years, CarbonFree® Business Partner Community Capital Management has neutralized over 850,000 pounds of carbon dioxide emissions – equivalent to the emissions created by burning almost 43,500 gallons of gasoline.
Community Capital Management is a registered investment adviser whose mission is to deliver strong investment performance for its clients in strategies aligned with their organizational purpose. The firm primarily manages fixed income impact investing portfolios that finance a variety of community initiatives such as affordable homeownership and rental housing, environmental sustainability, job creation and training programs, affordable healthcare facilities, childcare programs, and neighborhood revitalization activities. As a leader in the impact investing space, Community Capital Management maintains its commitment to operating an environmentally-conscious business practice.
"Community Capital is excited to partner with Carbonfund.org in committing to offset our carbon footprint. We hope that we will help lead the way and encourage others in the investment management industry to do the same," said Jamie Horwitz, Director of Marketing at Community Capital.
The firm is proud to lead by example, offsetting its carbon emissions by supporting the development of renewable energy, forestry projects and increased energy efficiency through its partnership with Carbonfund.org.
In addition, Community Capital Management’s CarbonFree® commitment includes encouraging office recycling programs, minimizing the use of plastic water bottles by offering a water filtration system in their office, using energy-efficient lighting, conducting more marketing online rather than using printed media, living within close proximity to their office to reduce vehicle pollution, and continually seeking other ways to grow their business in a sustainable, eco-friendly manner. This consistent leadership in operational sustainability sets Community Capital Management in the forefront of its industry as an environmentally responsible fixed income investment management firm.
Industry leadership is often demonstrated by implementing internally the best practices promoted to customers. This notion of “getting and keeping one’s own house in order first” is exemplified by the sustainability strategies of CarbonFree® Partner Clarke, a global environmental products and services company with the mission is to make communities around the world more livable, safe and comfortable.
In 2008 Clarke established a set of aggressive sustainability goals, and put into motion initiatives to achieve them. Every employee is charged with making everyday decisions, big and small, through a sustainability lens. In 2009, Clarke completed its first sustainability report, and in 2010, began reporting greenhouse gas emissions according to GRI standards. For the past three years, Clarke has neutralized its electricity usage and onsite fuel consumption by supporting Carbonfund.org’s clean air technology and carbon emissions reduction projects around the world.
”We are committed to creating policies and procedures that reduce our carbon footprint,” states J. Lyell Clarke III, President & CEO of Clarke. “Our commitment is a journey and we cannot continue on our journey without the partnerships of our stakeholders, customers and employees, and Carbonfund.org, which has demonstrated its transparency and helps us to further mitigate our impact today.”
Clarke helps its customers improve the health and safety of communities by developing and delivering environmentally responsible mosquito control and aquatic services to help prevent disease, control nuisances and create healthy waterways. Clarke’s product innovations include EarthRight™, a groundbreaking municipal public health service that uses only products made from naturally-derived active ingredients, and employs earth-friendly application methods including bicycles and all-electric sprayers. EarthRight™includes a unique pairing of two Environmental Protection Agency-registered and Organic Materials Review Institute (OMRI) Listed® products to give communities a highly sustainable choice for effective mosquito control.
Environmentally-conscious product development coupled with a disciplined strategy for internal and operational sustainability make Clarke an industry leader and partner that Carbonfund.org admires.
The Channel Islands National Park, off the coast of Santa Barbara, CA, is one of the most astounding and best-kept-secret wilderness attractions in the U.S. It is the only National Park that isn't open for vehicle traffic and does not charge an entrance fee. New CarbonFree® Business Partner Channel Islands Outfitters (CIO) offers tours to experience this natural amusement park, as well as other guided kayaking, sea cave exploration, hiking, backpacking expeditions and multi-sport adventures.
CIO is an employee owned and operated company of adventure enthusiasts who share a passion for the Channel Islands, Santa Ynez Mountains, and other amazing outdoor experiences. But the company recognized that its tour operations create unavoidable carbon emissions. By joining the CarbonFree® Business Partnership and supporting clean air and carbon reduction projects, CIO has neutralized its annual operational emissions.
"Traveling to an island on a regular basis requires fossil fuels to be burned, which contributes to CO2 emissions, “says Garrett Kababik, CEO and Co-Founder of CIO. “We can’t avoid this and stay in business, so we are doing our part to offset this carbon in other ways, which is why we partnered with Carbonfund.org."
The guides and advisory board of CIO have been serving Santa Barbara Community and the Channel Islands National Park for over 20 years. CIO also educates the public about ocean related issues and volunteers in restoration and preservation efforts in the Santa Barbara Channel watersheds.
This level of environmental leadership is evident in CIO’s overall operational commitments. In 2013, CIO officially became a certified For-Benefit Corporation. By voluntarily meeting higher standards of transparency, accountability, and performance, Certified B Corps are distinguishing themselves by offering a more positive and transparent way to do business. In addition, CIO established an Adventure Co-op that gives local community members and regular adventure travel guests to join the co-op and lower the ongoing costs of CIO services while enjoying access to the Paddle Sports Center facilities, equipment and fitness plans.
Carbonfund.org welcomes CIO to the CarbonFree® Business Partnership program and supports their efforts to run a more sustainable and responsible adventure tourism business.
As is the case with many of our eco-tourism business partners, Eagle-Eye Tours of Windermere, Canada recognizes the environmental impact of their educational tour programs and is doing something about it. Eagle-Eye Tours covers the globe with diverse tours, ranging from ones with a birding focus to tours combining photography and wildlife, birds and gardens and more, visiting some of the wildest corners of our planet. Tour travel and onsite lodging creates carbon dioxide emissions, which Eagle-Eye Tours works to minimize but also realizes that all emissions cannot be avoided.
To address this negative by-product of their tours, Eagle-Eye Tours has maintained a CarbonFree® operation for the past five years by calculating annual tour-related emissions then supporting Carbonfund.org’s clean air technology and carbon reduction projects to neutralize those emissions. To date, Eagle-Eye Tours has mitigated almost 2 million pounds of carbon dioxide emissions through their CarbonFree® program, equivalent to the amount of carbon dioxide sequestered by almost 23,000 tree seedlings planted and grown for ten years.
"We travel the world enjoying birds and other wildlife, but realize that many of these species are threatened by climate change,” explains Cam Gillies, Director of Eagle-Eye Tours. “We are excited to continue to offset the carbon emissions from our operations and to take concrete action in the conservation of the biodiversity we so enjoy."
Eagle-Eye Tours offsets all of the carbon dioxide emissions produced from all guide and on-tour participant flights, vehicle use during tours and operations, ship use, and the electricity used by their office. They also design tours that visit reserves and lodges that have been established to demonstrate and deliver benefits from conservation to the local community. Eagle- Eye Tours offers tour participants the option to help with environmental sustainability by offsetting flights from their departure to the start of the tour. This ongoing commitment to sustainable tour management helps to set apart Eagle-Eye Tours as a leader in ecotourism and demonstrated environmental responsibility in all aspects of their operation.
Businesses that use ingredients directly from nature ought to have a heightened sensibility to giving back to the environment and preserving the Earth’s resources. Five-Year CarbonFree® Business Partner Alima Pure does just that.
Alima Pure creates mineral-based makeup using only the purest cosmetic-grade mineral pigments. There are no additives, fillers or fragrances that can irritate skin or clog pores. Their mineral pigments are beneficial to the skin, offering sun protection and anti-inflammatory properties.
Alima Pure was founded on the premise of minimal ingredients for maximum impact. They follow the theory that a few simple, natural ingredients crafted in just the right way can give every woman the power to present her best self to the world with confidence and beauty at its most beautiful.
And Alima Pure is committed to reducing their operational carbon footprint by maintaining energy-efficiency manufacturing processes, using wind-powered electricity and recycled materials for printing. To counterbalance the remaining impact, Alima Pure has been a CarbonFree® Business Partner for the past five years, offsetting 100% of their net corporate carbon emissions through contributions to Carbonfund.org that support energy efficiency, renewable energy and forestry projects around the globe.
Alima Pure is also a proud member of 1% for the Planet, since their first year in business, donating 1% of annual gross revenue (sales, not profit) to grassroots environmental organizations dedicated to protecting the planet.
All Alima Pure cosmetics are cruelty-free, and most products are vegan (the only exception is a bit of beeswax in lipbalms). This dedication to product purity and operational sustainability sets Alima Pure apart as a leader in the natural cosmetics industry and a committed CarbonFree® Business Partner.
The trend towards “farm-to-table” dining is everywhere, and locavores “rule” in many parts of the world. But how can you tell if a restaurant truly “walks the walk” and is not just “talking the talk”? An inspiring example is CarbonFree® Business Partner Founding Farmers, with locations in Washington, DC and Potomac, MD (with Tysons Corner, VA slated to open in Summer 2014). Since September 2008, the award-winning Founding Farmers has been one of the country’s leading restaurants to offer farm-inspired “American True Food & Drink” in a modern, casual setting.
Founding Farmers is a business that is fully committed to preserving, protecting and enhancing the earth with a “Triple Green Approach” to bringing great food from Farm to Fork. The menus at Founding Farmers are based on regional and sustainable agricultural resources whenever possible, and the freezers on site are for ice cream only!
For the fifth consecutive year, Founding Farmers is proud to be an official CarbonFree® Business Partner, supporting global climate-friendly renewable energy projects and the Carbonfund.org mission of education, offsets and outreach. Founding Farmers is 100% carbon neutral by offsetting its CO2 emissions annually with Carbonfund.org.
"As Washington DC’s greenest restaurant, and one of the greenest in the country, our business model is earth-friendly from the inside out. It was logical, affirmative and natural for the restaurant to partner with Carbonfund.org,” explains Dan Simons, PR Advisor for Founding Farmers. “We believe in setting an example as a leader in the green/LEED restaurant category, and partnering with Carbonfund.org allows us to share in the mission and share what we’ve done with others."
Secondly, the restaurant operates with the earth in mind, by sorting and recycling all non-food products, processing used cooking oil into bio-diesel, composting all organic waste products, using an in-house super water purification system to eliminate water bottle waste, and cleaning with earth-friendly and chemically neutral products. Even the menus are printed on recycled papers with soy-based inks.
Finally, the architecture and design of the space itself meet the USGBC’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold design standards and criteria, with the use of reclaimed and recycled materials for the floors, surface finishes and fabrics; with high-efficiency lighting, HVAC and general energy use.Beyond the building itself, Founding Farmers is a Certified Green Restaurant™ as recognized by the Green Restaurant Association for eco-friendly operations.
A collective of American family farmers owns the flagship restaurant, where products are sourcedfrom family farms, ranches, and fisheries across the United States. They celebrate and share the longstanding connection between farmers — the first to lead the green movement — and their historic stewardship of natural resources. Carbonfund.org is proud to partner with Founding Farmers in achieving sustainability leadership in the restaurant industry.