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Earth Day 2024 is here, and sustainability is top of mind for people and organizations around the planet we all call home. Many are implementing grandiose plans to change their impact on the planet, and while change on a grand scale is certainly welcome, there are also everyday swaps and changes that can make a notable impact. The start of the new year has come and gone but there is still time to make some resolutions for change between now and Earth Day 2025.

Close-up of female hand holding white reusable steel stainless thermo water bottle isolated on background of cyan, aqua menthe color. Plastic free.1. Reusable Water Bottles

It’s no secret that regular use of single-use plastic water bottles contributes to pollution and resource depletion, posing significant environmental challenges. It’s estimated that Americans use 50 billion single-use water bottles per year, making for a significant impact on the planet. While it may seem simple, advocating for the adoption of reusable water bottles presents organizations with a simple way to reduce plastic waste and promote sustainability in the workplace.

Providing reusable water bottles to employees can be seen as a win-win too. Branding water bottles encourages employees to switch from single-use plastic bottles to reusable alternatives while also extending your brand’s reach on an albeit small but daily basis. Offering stylish and functional water bottles reinforces the organization’s commitment to sustainability and promotes a culture of environmental responsibility.

Installing water filtration systems or water refill stations in the workplace takes this concept a step further, making it convenient for employees to refill their reusable water bottles throughout the day and removing any barriers to entry. It’s a great way to “close the loop” and make it nearly impossible for your team to make the switch.

happy african american freelancer holding cup while using laptop at home2. Greener Commutes

Daily commuting and transportation emissions have a significant environmental impact, contributing to air pollution and carbon emissions. Organizations can reduce their carbon footprint and improve employee well-being by promoting greener commuting practices.

Encouraging remote work options and flexible scheduling allows employees to work from home or adjust their work hours to avoid peak commuting times, reducing traffic congestion and emissions. Providing incentives for carpooling, biking, or public transportation can also encourage more sustainable commuting among your team. Some relatively low-cost solutions include offering subsidies for public transit passes or establishing carpooling programs that incentivize employees to leave their cars at home.

Remote work doesn’t mean sacrificing collaboration or teamwork, either. Virtual meeting and video conference platforms allow employees to collaborate and communicate effectively without the need for physical travel.

It’s estimated that if a little as 5% of daily commuters in the country switch to remote work, that translates into a reduction of almost 21 million tons of CO2 per year, making flexible scheduling and remote work very low-hanging fruit in making lasting change.

portrait of a happy and diverse volunteer group pointing towards camera3. Volunteering Event Once a Year

Your team can be your biggest asset when it comes to facilitating true change. Getting buy-in from your employees is key and can often be the make-or-break factor in the success of your efforts. A great way to get your team involved is to host an annual volunteer event supporting an environmentally focused organization.

Placing an emphasis on corporate social responsibility and community engagement is crucial in driving positive change and impacting environmental issues. Hosting an annual volunteering event focused on supporting ecological causes allows organizations to give back to the community and support conservation efforts.

Organizing volunteering activities such as beach or park clean-ups, tree planting initiatives, or environmental education programs provides employees with opportunities to actively contribute to environmental conservation. Participating in hands-on volunteering fosters teamwork, camaraderie, and a sense of purpose among employees.

Engaging employees in volunteering events benefits the environment and strengthens employee morale, loyalty, and engagement. Organizations enhance their corporate reputation and brand image by demonstrating a commitment to environmental stewardship and community involvement.

Make Your Resolution

Whether you’re changing the entire makeup of your organization’s sustainability policies or looking to make some simple, everyday swaps for your team to experiment with, there are a myriad of ways we can come together to honor our planet. What “earthly” resolution will you make this year?