If organizations talking about the environment are starting to sound like a broken record, it’s because the issue has never been more serious than it is today. In fact, it’s been estimated that at least 17 million acres of forests will be lost permanently to city development over the next 50 years.
Fortunately, more and more brands are starting to take responsibility for their impact on our global ecosystem. Airbnb, the popular service that lets homeowners rent out individual rooms, is one of many companies taking steps to increase their sustainability practices. Besides monitoring the environmental impact it has through its users, it launched an online sustainability education hub in time for Big Energy Saving Week.
This is likely a good step for the company given that it plans to launch an IPO in 2020. Featuring information on sustainability for Airbnb hosts from such sources as Oilo and Clean Switch, it’s just one example of how large businesses are starting to take issues like energy sustainability seriously. Now, hosts are expected to work sustainably, not just offer ice cream, snacks, and Wi-Fi to guests for the sake of a better review. Best of all? It was thanks to the hosts on Airbnb’s site that such an eco-friendly change is happening in the first place.
And that’s just the beginning. To learn about more companies who are taking the lead in making workplaces more sustainable, keep reading.
A tech giant whose smartphones, computers, and appliances are familiar sights around the world, Samsung is perhaps one of the most ambitious corporations to take sustainability seriously.
It’s a well-known fact that electronics are all too likely to end up in landfills, so Samsung responded by making waste and landfill diversion a top priority. By mid-2019, they had collected and recycled about 6.2 billion pounds of electronics around the world. By 2030, they intend to recycle 15 billion pounds of tech waste.
Autodesk is a software development and data storage company that contributes to many imaging professions, including animated filmmaking. Between keeping the lights on and computers running for their developers, and powering data storage for users, Autodesk’s electricity usage was adding up. However, they recently achieved a goal to power their entire facilities and cloud services with renewable energy exclusively — a rare and impressive accomplishment. Since 94% of companies rely on cloud services and similar tech in the workplace, they would be lax to ignore the accomplishments of Autodesk.
While most of the companies on this list are focused on technology, Harmless Harvest targets the trade closest to nature: agriculture. Using a progressive food and beverage initiative, Harmless Harvest aims to prove that ecosystem-based farming businesses can actually outperform conventional industrial farms. The company sources raw and organic ingredients directly from farmers around the world. Ultimately, they make better food products than most of what’s available, while positively impacting the planet through a positive feedback loop between humans and plants. Although Harmless Harvest is a small company for now, they have big dreams for the impact they can have on the planet.
One of the more surprising and innovative companies on this list, CrowdFlower processes massive data projects for their clients, breaking them down into small, manageable tasks, and outsourcing the tasks to thousands of contributors working remotely around the world. As a result of this, CrowdFlower clients can get enormous jobs done in a matter of hours, instead of the weeks it might take their in-house staff.
Not only is their very business model a more sustainable way for the world to do its work, but CrowdFlower aspires to be a super-green workplace on its own, with hundreds of plants adorning every surface in its office. If more companies would follow suit with this one practice, we might find ourselves living in a more sustainable future overnight.
From raising sustainability awareness to decorating offices with greenery, these are just a handful of the many ways businesses are improving sustainability in the workplace, for themselves and the rest of the world. If you want to start living more sustainably in your own home, repairing leaky pipes, improving insulation, ditching plastics, and buying gently used furniture are just a few ways you can save resources and prevent pollution. While big business isn’t always good for the environment, it’s great to see heavy hitters making a change with the planet in mind.