The first Earth Day took place on April 22, 1970 following an extremely detrimental oil spill off the coast of Santa Barbara, California. While it is now a global event, Earth Day was first conceived by U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson as a way of raising public awareness about environmental issues. This year’s Earth Day is dedicated to ending plastic pollution around the world (Earth Day Network).
The U.S. discards 35 billion plastic bottles every year and only recycles approximately 25% of the plastic it produces. Most of the plastic ends up in landfills, where it takes up to 1,000 years to degrade, or in Earth’s oceans, where it collects in massive “garbage patches” and poisons wildlife (The University of Utah; NOAA). Plastic pollution is highly damaging to our environment, but it is not the only method by which we have been polluting. Oil spills still hemorrhage millions of barrels of oil into our oceans, and the rampant burning of fossil fuels continues to fill the air with toxic smog. In order to address the host of environmental issues, we need a collective and manifold approach of taking better care of our one and only planet.
Here are a few ways to reduce your company’s reliance on plastic:
- Drink from reusable water bottles, glasses or ceramic mugs
- Ditch plastic water filters for a more permanent water purifying system
- Invest in office silverware and Tupperware instead of plastic utensils and Ziploc bags
- Carry your items in cloth bags instead of plastic ones
- Use paper waste to pad packages instead of bubble wrap
- Buy rechargeable batteries for your electronics to reduce the need for new batteries packaged in plastic
- Order office supplies in bulk to reduce plastic packaging waste
Another critical way of mitigating your company’s overall pollution is by making the transition to clean, renewable energy. Consuming conventional sources of energy, such as coal, oil and gas, increases our carbon emissions and further contributes to the deleterious effects of climate change. Globally, the economic sector that contributes to the highest greenhouse gas emissions is electricity and heating production that relies on the burning of fossil fuels (EPA). The U.S. has already made sizable progress in implementing renewable energy, yet there is still plenty of room for further implementation. In 2017, the Energy Information and Administration found that wind and solar accounted for 10% of the country’s electricity generation (EIA). Many states have ambitious renewable portfolio standards in place: Washington D.C. and New Mexico aim to have 20% of their electricity generation from renewable energy by 2020, and California and New York aim to have 50% by 2030 (NCSL).
EnterSolar has been helping businesses make the transition to renewable energy since 2006, and is a leading national provider of solar solutions to the commercial marketplace. We have completed projects for some of the country’s most sophisticated corporate solar users, including Target, Swiss Re, Bloomberg L.P. and ASICS. EnterSolar’s expertise in solar project financing ensures that the decision to go solar benefits your bottom line as well as the environment. This Earth Day, consider the ways that you can mitigate your pollution by reducing, reusing, recycling and going renewable. If you are interested in learning about how your company can go solar, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or 888-225-0270.