A simple suggestion five years ago to a client, recommending that they publish the company’s carbon footprint in their annual report, led Smart Media to adopt a broad and continuous sustainability commitment in its own operations and in the production of its award-winning annual reports.
One of the very few companies in the world to focus exclusively on annual reports, Smart Media The Annual Report Company (‘Smart Media’) helps organizations produce annual reports which go beyond statutory disclosure and compliance to become effective instruments of corporate communications.
In 2008, Smart Media encouraged a client to voluntarily publish their carbon footprint in the annual report. Since then, the numbers of client companies including this operational emissions information in annual reports have grown. Some clients depend upon Smart Media’s consultancy assistance which includes training, development of data entry forms and computation of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in accordance with the GHG Protocol Corporate Standard.
By way of setting an example, Smart Media commenced producing carbon neutral annual reports in 2009, by thoroughly analyzing the carbon emissions associated with the full annual report production process. Then, Smart Media chose to partner with Carbonfund.org to neutralize these emissions by supporting global reforestation projects. In 2012, Smart Media became completely carbon neutral under Scopes 1 and 2 as well as selected sources under Scope 3 of the GHG Protocol Corporate Standard by mitigating its own operational emissions with Carbonfund.org.
“Our strategy was to reduce our GHG emissions as much as possible and to offset the rest thereafter. Our philosophy, when in comes to partnerships is ‘the best or not at all’. Having looked around we chose Carbonfund.org, as it is an independent foundation having a great track record and credibility. They have the experience and expertise to help clients in almost any sector in any part of the world. Thus, their capabilities matched our requirements as well as those of our varied group of clients" says Dr. Vijith Kannangara, Chairman, Smart Media The Annual Report Company.
Doing business in Bahrain, Hong Kong, Maldives, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Sri Lanka and UAE, and with a track record spanning over 15 years and 1,500 reports, Smart Media is the acknowledged leader for annual reports in the Asia-Pacific region. This is borne out by the numerous international awards and accolades earned year after year, including the Platinum Achievement Award at the International ARC Awards, USA - popularly dubbed as the Oscars of Annual Reports - in 2010 and 2012 – and in 2013, Smart Media received an unprecedented 94 awards, including 25 Gold awards and 7 Grand awards.
Smart Media clients get the benefit of working with a certified carbon neutral company and neutralizing the GHG emissions resulting from annual report production activities outsourced by Smart Media in the production of their annual reports, including the usage of paper and printing, offset through verified sources. As a result of Smart Media’s leadership, some clients have begun setting targets to reduce their GHG emissions intensity through the adoption of energy efficiency and conservation measures as well as fuel switching, with the added benefits of operational cost savings. For Smart Media, this may well be its single largest contribution – though indirect – towards environmental stewardship. Carbonfund.org is proud to partner with Smart Media in these efforts.
Many of our business partners focus on following sustainable business practices, specializing in organic products, minimizing waste in their packaging and supporting Fair Trade practices. These programs are important to their business ethics and compatible with the products they’re delivering.
Exemplifying this approach is the husband-and-wife team that created Arbor Teas, a CarbonFree® Business Partner for six consecutive years.
Arbor Teas offers USDA-certified organic loose leaf teas from around the globe through its on-line store, with one of the web’s largest selections of organic tea, three-quarters of which is Fair Trade Certified. Arbor Teas maintains a daily mission to find the world's most fantastic organic teas and deliver them to customers as sustainably as possibly. This includes maintaining their CarbonFree® Business Partnership, neutralizing all operational and shipping emissions by supporting Carbonfund.org’s clean air and carbon reduction projects around the world.
Because Arbor Teas deals in products that come from all corners of the globe, it was imperative to offset the carbon footprint of all shipments that arrive at or depart from their facility as well as the carbon emissions from their internal operations.
“It makes no sense at all to sell an organic product if the method of delivering it to our customers is environmentally harmful,” emphasizes Jeremy Lopatin, co-founder of Arbor Teas with wife Aubrey. “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!”
Arbor Teas became the first tea company to deliver its full line of organic loose teas in 100% backyard compostable packaging, continuing to lead the tea industry through its staunch commitment to sustainable business practices. Tea drinkers are now able to compost their tea leaves and tea packaging together in their home composting system. Organic teas delivered CarbonFree® with compostable packaging – that’s commitment to environmental sustainability in action and leadership by example.