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.
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.
Throughout 2013, Carbonfund.org will be recognizing our business partners who are reaching their fifth and sixth years as CarbonFree® Partners. Part of this recognition includes special tree-plantings, 10 for each partnership year, by Carbonfund.org in honor of each of these anniversary Partners.
The CarbonFree® Business Partnership and this special tree-planting commemoration augment the environmental responsibility that many of our business partners exhibit in their ongoing operations. One such partner, LATHER, producing skin care products that inspire a healthier more radiant life, maintains various sustainability initiatives as part of their environmental commitment.
LATHER offers its customers an in-store packaging recycling program and has pursued more environmentally sustainable plastic packaging made with EcoPure, an organic compound that accelerates natural biodegradation in plastics.
Since 2008, LATHER has partnered with Carbonfund.org to offset the carbon footprint of their corporate office. To date, LATHER has offset over 40,000 pounds of CO2 emissions through projects supporting renewable energy, methane destruction, and reforestation. This equates to the amount of carbon dioxide sequestered each year by almost 16 acres of US forests.
When notified of the 50 trees planted for their 2013 CarbonFree® anniversary, our friends at LATHER pointed out that the traditional five year anniversary theme is wood.
LATHER acknowledged the benefits of tree planting efforts and the wide range of ecosystem services that trees contribute, including their ability to:
- Produce oxygen - without which life would not be possible
- Absorb carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas, to mitigate climate change
- Improve local air and water quality by filtering pollutants
- Restore biodiversity while providing habitat and nutrition for wildlife
- Control flooding by minimizing runoff and topsoil loss
- Protect against storms such as Southeast Asia’s monsoons and hurricanes in the Caribbean
- Help regulate water and nutrient cycles (e.g., phosphorous and nitrogen)
- Create jobs managing tree nurseries, planting and care
- Provide various aesthetical, spiritual and cultural benefits to local communities
We're proud to partner with LATHER to help them continue their commitment to environmental sustainability and to helping others lead a more radiant life.
Forward-thinking and environmentally committed organizations recognize that the current emphasis on environmental responsibility is not a passing fad. Companies that rise above their competitors and lead with strong sustainability initiatives that make good business sense are the companies that will continue to prosper and grow. CarbonFree® Shipping Partner Envelopes.com is a great example, with a five-year long commitment to neutralizing all product shipping emissions through supporting Carbonfund.org’s global reforestation projects.
The CarbonFree® Shipping program is part of Envelopes.com’s “Going Green” program that includes facilities powered by 100% wind-powered electricity, a large selection of recycled paper envelopes, ones with corn-based clear address windows made from compostable materials by EarthFirst® Films, envelopes printed with soy inks, and envelopes and paper products made from 100% cotton fibers versus traditional paper.
“Partnering with Carbonfund.org is a great way to help reduce our carbon footprint. Our partnership has enabled us to send CarbonFree® Shipments by offsetting the CO2 created when shipping our products to your door by investing in reforestation projects,” explains Seth Newman, President of Envelopes.com. “Reforestation projects play a vital role in absorbing emissions and providing time to transition to a new energy future.”
Over the past five years, Envelopes.com has neutralized over 1.6 million pounds of carbon dioxide emissions from product shipments, equivalent to the amount of carbon dioxide sequestered by almost 19,000 trees over a ten-year period.
Every business and consumer has choices when it comes to the paper products they use. Companies like Envelopes.com are helping to ensure that these choices include options that are environmentally responsible and exhibit ongoing commitments to sustainable operations. Envelopes.com’s long-term dedication to Going Green initiatives such as CarbonFree® Shipping keep them at the forefront of their industry and the green choice for their customers.
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.
A basic tenet of business leadership is to lead by example, “walk the walk and talk the talk” and “practice what you preach.” CarbonFree® Business Partner AQS Management Systems leads by the example of “practicing what they teach” in the area of environmental sustainability.
AQS Management Systems, Inc. provides a broad range of consulting, ISO training, coaching, and project assistance in support of organizational improvement programs and implementation of international management system standards. As part of their training platform, AQS provides training on Environmental Management Systems (ISO 14001) to organizations throughout the country and world.
AQS knows that it is important to “practice what they teach”, and to do what they can to be good corporate citizens by diminishing wasteful activity and encouraging other businesses to do the same.
For the past five years as a CarbonFree® Business Partner, AQS has supported Carbonfund.org’s energy efficiency projects with donations that equate to neutralizing the electricity consumption from ten average US households during each of those five years.
"I did a lot of research and thought that Carbonfund.org looked like one of the most reputable organizations in the area,” states Ben Ames, Vice President of AQS Management Systems. “It was important to us that the money we paid was used responsibly and we felt that the 3rd party audits and other corporate clients of Carbonfund.org were a good sign."
Carbonfund.org commends AQS for their continued commitment to the CarbonFree® Partnership program and to environmental sustainability as part of their overall mission to provide excellent training to other businesses in the area of environmental and organizational improvement strategies.
As we continue to celebrate fifth and sixth anniversaries with many of our CarbonFree® Business Partners, new businesses are joining our partnership ranks as part of their environmental commitment.
New CarbonFree® Business Partner Beautycounter launched with its skin care line on March 4, 2013. Beautycounter’s mission is to educate families about the need for safer chemicals and beauty care products, and to be a part of the solution by creating safe and effective skin care and beauty products in a socially and environmentally responsible way. Beautycounter was founded by a team of social entrepreneurs who believe in using the power of business and strategic partnerships to move in the right direction.
One of these right decisions was joining the CarbonFree® Business Partnership and CarbonFree® Shipping Emissions programs, neutralizing all annual carbon emissions from general business operational and from shipping their products to customers. Through the CarbonFree® programs, Beautycounter is supporting Carbonfund.org’s energy efficiency projects around the world.
“In order to be successful in business and in our social mission, we have to reject the short-term thinking that got all of us into the current environmental crisis,” explains Mia Davis, Vice President of Health & Safety. “Beautycounter recognizes that we can’t do it alone—strategic partnerships are absolutely necessary to create meaningful, lasting change. We’re proud to partner with Carbonfund.org to offset our carbon emissions, and for guidance on reducing our overall footprint.”
Beautycounter maintains an extensive list of chemical ingredients that will never be used in their products, which contain no hidden fragrances or preservatives. Beautycounter also prohibits testing of their cosmetics on animals, makes every effort to use FSC-certified paper and post consumer recycled content in both paper and plastic materials, and sources plastics that do not leach toxic chemicals and that are recyclable in most communities.
These comprehensive initiatives demonstrate Beautycounter’s forward thinking approach to entering the beauty and skin care industry as a responsible leader in environmental sustainability, and Carbonfund.org is pleased to be a partner in their efforts.