what can I do in my current job to help the environment?

It’s the Thursday “ask the readers” question. A reader writes:

I’m wondering if anyone out there has experience with successfully uniting their mundane job with fighting for the environment?

I work full-time in tech, want to stay here, and really love my job —but at the same time, I feel a constant, deep pull toward helping the environment that colors everything I do. How can I stay at my job but find ways to help the environment from where I am?

In the past I’ve made an effort to see if I can nudge things here and there to make things more sustainable and maybe inspire people, using my workplace as a platform. I’ve been lucky enough to work in spaces where this wasn’t an issue — I persuaded the company in joining the international climate strike, I set up a(n unsuccessful) green group at work, and I did some fundraising for good causes within the workplace. We were also so lucky to have an absolutely dynamite facilities team — they refurbished the entire office to make it fully sustainable and even donated to an ongoing pro-bono project with continuous updates sent to all employees. They did an incredible job, entirely on their own initiative and I would ultimately like to keep that momentum going.

So to the readers — I’m wondering if there are ways (beyond just donating) that people have come up with in uniting their passion for a good cause and an unrelated full-time job. 

Let’s talk about it in the comments. How can people can help the environment at work without changing jobs?

{ 280 comments… read them below }

  1. Pool Noodle Barnacle Pen0s*

    Advocate for more remote work and remote meetings (i.e. less road and air travel)

    1. bamcheeks*

      Depending on where you are based, request that the organisation allows for or advocates the use of trains even where it might take a few hours longer or cost more than flying. (In Europe at least, it’s really common for train travel to be completely possibly– and comfortable! and convenient! — but more expensive or a bit longer for journeys over 3-400 miles.)

      1. TG*

        It needs to be top down so I’d say see if you can get an executive sponsor and go from there.

        1. Münchner Kindl*

          Yes, this is the most important step.

          Ideally, one of the C-suites of the company would become Officer for Environment (or whatever) and then (depending on how much extra time the company allocates) either educate themselves or partner with a local Green NGO, to
          1. calculate carbon footprint of your company on all levels: not just how employees get to work, but production process, how much paper is used for office printing, etc.
          2. do audit of Is-status: are we using recycled paper for printing? Is our electricity from renewable provider? How can we accomodate employees who want to bike to work (see: showers + change rooms, safe + dry bike racks…) What light bulbs are used in the building? including production and sourcing
          3. Suggest changes from 2, which will go from small (switching from normal paper to recycled paper costs 10%? more) to big (can we install solar PV panels on our building’s roofs? (Who owns the buildings?) Can we rent the roof to solar companies, let them install PV?
          This will require lots of research and calculating costs versus offset/ ROI. It should also cross-partner with PR/ Marketing, so that when a big milestone is achieved – our production switched all trucks to electric/ Hydrogen, saving x liters of gasoline per year! – you can tell the press and make your company look good (also helps selling it to the rest of C-suite.
          4. Start implementing, ideally along a timeline and plan.

    2. Marge*

      This. My workplace subsidizes public transport.

      Would it be legal in the states to offer incentives to travel by public transport or bike, or would that run afoul of ADA rules?

      1. Just Me*

        I actually hadn’t thought about how ADA could apply to that, but both are very common!

      2. Grits McGee*

        At least in the Washington DC area, federal agencies subsidize commuting via public transit, so it seems like that’s ok from an ADA/legal standpoint. Specifically subsidizing bike commuting, especially if you’re offering an incentive other than paying for a bike share membership, might get a little more complicated.

      3. WellRed*

        Lots of places in the states subsidize this sort of thing. It would be great if more did. The ADA doesn’t require workplaces to treat everyone exactly the same. It requires reasonable accommodations where requested.

        1. Akili*

          This. I think so long as it’s “subsidizing alternatives” and not “punishing employees for not using alternatives” it’s fine. My work subsidizes public transit as well (I’m in Canada though) and I used it for all my work commuting before I moved to a job where I only need to go in once a week – now the cost benefits have changed.

      4. AnotherOne*

        I’m not sure why it would be an ADA issue. Plenty of people with disabilities use public transport as their primary form of transportation.

        Though obviously that is easier in some areas than in others.

        1. I'm just here for the cats!*

          I think Marge was thinking more about incentives for biking to work. Someone who is mobility challenged may not be able to bike. Similar how we hear about companies who do incentives for health care based on how many miles ran or other physical exercises.

          1. No Bees On Typhon*

            On the other hand, bikes (and especially electric bikes) can actually be mobility aids – for some folks, cycling can be easier than walking

            1. Curmudgeon in California*

              On the other hand, bikes (and especially electric bikes) can actually be mobility aids – for some folks, cycling can be easier than walking

              IF they can actually balance on a bike! One of the things I lost when I had my stroke was my balance. When I try to ride a bicycle or even a scooter I fall over! (I live in fear of field sobriety tests, because I can’t walk on a straight line stone cold sober.)

              I miss being able to ride a bike. I got a three wheeler, but one of my housemates left it in the yard and now it’s rusted and ruined. Plus it’s harder to find a place to lock it up.

      5. I'm just here for the cats!*

        I think as long as the incentive is to use public transit (which has disabled seating and accebibility) and/OR bike/walk I don’t think it would be a problem.

        Another thought would be is offer a discount on public transit costs. Where I live a money bus pass is around $40. But employees get a year for $80. I think there is also something about taking pre tax money from your paycheck and putting in special account for transit, but it’s not something anyone really does in my city. I know others in the system who are in bigger cities and/or have to pay tolls and they use it more.

      6. Nightengale*

        as someone who takes transit rather than drives due to disability reasons, and knows many others who do the same, subsidizing public transit seems ADA friendly. Biking might be a different issue (but I think incentivizing BOTH would be fine.)

      7. Not that kind of doctor*

        At least in non-pandemic times, my university offers staff a free train pass plus a cash reward for never/rarely driving to work. (They can check how often you’ve used a parking pass.) This was a big motivator for me, even as someone who already wanted to help the environment.

      8. ToS*

        In the US, public transportation is required to be accessible for people with disabilities, so it’s equitable. Being able to use pedestrian means to get to work is more complex – so much of that is location-of-housing-specific. Biking is pedestrian, however I only bike to work once a year for solidarity because it’s 17 miles one-way, and there are a few areas where I share a single lane of traffic with car due to no shoulder!

        Ride sharing can be excellent, too.

        1. Disabled trans lesbian*

          There is a very wide gap between “required to be accessible” and actually being accessible, as you would know if you listen to Disabled people talking about “public” transport.

          1. Addie*

            This is an unnecessarily rude response to a very polite and seemingly well meaning comment. Not sure why it wasn’t removed.

    3. AGC*

      +100 on decreasing air travel especially. If you’re in the US, train options are limited, but that is really the best option. There are a few good Amtrak lines that may or may not work for your location.

    4. Thin Mints didn't make me thin*

      Remote work can also reduce consumption (takeout containers, disposable coffee cups, pants).

      1. CranberryCheddar*

        The “pants” inclusion made me chuckle, thank you! (And considering how incredibly resource-consuming the clothing industry is, this is no small thing!)

  2. Murfle*

    No suggestions yet, but I want to say that I’m in the same boat – I work full-time in a tech environment for a bank, and wooof, I feel a lot of cognitive dissonance sometimes. I like my job and the security it offers, but man, it’s hard knowing that my employer funds a lot of fossil fuel projects.

    1. This-is-a-name-I-guess*

      See my comment below about advocating for a divestiture from Crypto. Some traditional finance firms are anti-crypto, but an alarming number of trad finance folks are crypto-curious. The human and environmental degradation happening in Crypto is absolutely appalling and unethical.

        1. This-is-a-name-I-guess*

          Vice is still too pro-Crypto. Unfortunately, you have to go to independent journalists to get the hard-hitting reporting on Crypto. I feel like a conspiracy theorist saying it, but it’s true. Even liberals have been duped by this crap.

          Dan Olson’s video is really the gold standard explainer, I feel: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YQ_xWvX1n9g

          David Gerard and Amy Castor are both doing great work on Crypto: https://davidgerard.co.uk/blockchain/ https://amycastor.com/

          Molly White is good, too: https://web3isgoinggreat.com/

      1. Curmudgeon in California*

        IMO, crypto is an environmental disaster and a scam. It’s slowly crashing now, but for a while there it was some sort of libertarian ideal that had no “nasty regulations” by government. Now these idiots are crying for regulation because a lot of them are losing their shirts.

        Crypto mining uses so much energy that it can have a significant impact on global warming and energy prices.

    2. LW*

      OP here –
      I really feel you! I think some of the tech sector is coming around, largely through consumer pressure and people on the inside who genuinely wants things to change. But until we see sweeping, systemic changes the dissonance is always there, hanging over our heads!
      I wanted to leave this here for you: Lucie Pinson, a French activist and Goldman award recipient ‘successfully pressured France’s three largest banks to eliminate financing for new coal projects and coal companies,’ so things are definitely happening. Hopefully it makes your day a little brighter. :)

    1. Net Zero Enthusiast*

      +1 for that podcast – it’s fantastic! There are now quite a few resources for companies who are interested in having climate pledges / net-zero plans (which is what those Amazon workers were advocating for).

      You can’t force your company to make a net-zero plan (at least not on your own), but if they’re receptive, here are some useful links:

    2. ariel*

      Yes, How to Save a Planet is a great resource for seeing all the ways that climate intersects with our lives and how to take action for change. OP, you may find that the best use of your resources is outside of work – what groups are local to you, can you use your skills to put together a simple website or can you do all kinds of other tasks? It may not overlap with your work time, but there’s a whole community of folks like you and they need your time and enthusiasm. Ayana Elizabeth Johnson, formerly of HTSAP and editor of the book All We Can Save, has shared this diagram of finding work at the intersection of your interests, skills, and high priority effort. https://www.ayanaelizabeth.com/climatevenn

      1. LW*

        This is fantastic, thank you for taking the time to post all these links and recommendations! I’m saving all of these!

  3. Climate Worker*

    Lots of tech companies have made admirable commitments to reduce their immediate emissons (things like having green buildings, etc), and the next step is for those companies to help reduce emissions along the supply chain. There’s an interesting report called the Carbon Bankroll report which calculates the emissions of some major tech company’s cash holdings (the emissions = when the company’s cash is used by the bank to fund fossil fuel projects).

    It’s hard to advocate for this on your own, so I would encourage the writer to get together with like-minded coworkers to help form an employee sustainability or climate committee and from there advocate internally for better practices!

    1. LW*

      Thank you for your tip on Carbon Bankroll, I also really love your suggestion to get together with like-minded people. Thank you!

  4. bamcheeks*

    I started (but didn’t really follow through, which is my fatal flaw) a group to look at what organisations and institutions everyone could influence. What’s your local council doing? How is your pension invested? Has your bank divested from fossil fuels? If you have a mortgage, where’s it held? What’s your union doing? Are there any organisations which send you a “here is our annual general meeting, tick here to let the board control your vote for new trustees/chairs/etc”? What would happen if you properly engaged with that process and persuaded others to? Residents’ Associations?

    Basically, what if you look at all the institutions and organisations which might list you as a “stakeholder” and … go and grab hold of that stake, I guess. Shake it as hard as you can, and organise others to do the same. Depending on what your role is, LW, you may even be able to use your professional skills to support this. My skills are very much about being able to plan a project, see the bigger picture, brainstorm connections and opportunities, which is why I cam up with this idea.. but, as I say, not so much on the follow-through. :-/

    1. Siege*

      You can also go the other direction, but the same idea. For example, facilities made the space sustainable, but are the new supplies incurring greater environmental cost in shipping, etc? Is the toilet paper better for the environment but so terrible to use that people end up using a lot more? Obviously, don’t survey your coworkers about their toilet habits, but it’s very common for people to realize that X is a problem, and switch to Y without thinking about whether it solves the problem. You see this a lot with food, where people want to have the same food or clothing without animal products, and don’t consider the environmental cost of manufacturing and shipping components. A plastic windbreaker can be environmentally worse than a leather coat.

      But in the end, nothing meaningful will get done if we don’t organize political pressure, and bamcheeks’ suggestions are more practical from that standpoint. If your retirement fund gets tired of hearing from you and others who agree with you they’ll get off fossil fuels. They won’t if they don’t, though.

      1. pancakes*

        I don’t think that is actually going in the other direction – if the new supplies are worse for the environment, for example, they’re not sustainable. That’s part of sustainability analysis.

        1. Siege*

          People don’t evaluate it. If you decide to cut meat out of your diet for environmental reasons, you can get vegan replacements for a lot of food, but it’s not better to replace, for example, locally-raised organic meat from a farmer’s market with vegan products transported across the country. You can order sustainable supplies on Amazon, but if you can get them at your local stores, you’ve done nothing other than contribute to the level of pollution emitted by Amazon, because the store is still going to have its own network of suppliers and transport and distribution warehouses, which will exist whether or not you’re buying the same products somewhere else, so to me, the cost of using Amazon’s duplicated shipping and handling system eliminates the benefit of the sustainable supplies. (And, having worked at Amazon, the amount of waste they generate is environmentally just devastating. These are people who would rather take an axe to returned products than resell most of them.) Since most companies (OP’s could be an exception!) function on ease of availability and cost, they may well be buying more sustainable items in a less-sustainable way. My point is just that buying sustainable laundry detergent doesn’t work out if you have to wash your clothes three times to get them clean, so you need to evaluate whether the sustainable alternative is actually sustainable, for you, in your circumstances.

          1. Lyra Belacqua*

            So, the thing about local, organic meat vs. vegan replacements from far away isn’t true. The vast majority of emissions from food come from production, not transport.

            1. RebelwithMouseyHair*

              Was just about to say this.
              By far the most polluting food is beef, even when local and organic.
              Followed by other red meats, followed by cheese, poultry, fish and eggs.
              Plant-based food pollutes less even when highly processed (although we shouldn’t eat too much processed food for other health reasons) and even when it’s travelled from literally the other side of the world.
              info at ourworldindata dot org / environmental impacts of food

          2. pancakes*

            Thoughtful people do evaluate it. Food writer Alicia Kennedy is brilliant on this topic.

            1. Siege*

              Okay, I have many better things to do than argue with you about a suggestion I made on a post asking for suggestions. I’m very sorry you don’t like it and think I’m an idiot for making it.

              1. pancakes*

                I didn’t say that, and wouldn’t, and do not appreciate you firmly suggesting I would.

                My intention was not to argue but to point you (and whoever happens to be reading) towards various people and sources to look towards instead of these broad generalizations about no one engaging with those ideas. They aren’t often covered in depth or even paid much lip service in many areas of the food media landscape, but many other important areas (labor news, workers’ perspectives, etc.) aren’t either. There are magazines, finally – Whetstone is very good, The Preserve Journal looks good, I’m sure there are others I’m forgetting.

          3. pancakes*

            Other resources: A number of the links here.


            Stanford has a “Center on Food Security and the Environment (FSE) [that] addresses critical global issues of hunger, poverty and environmental degradation. Our long-term goals focus on designing new approaches to solving food security’s global challenges by building an evolving research portfolio with a team of experts in relevant scientific, economic, and policy areas. FSE is a joint effort of the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies and the Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment.”

          4. Green tea*

            The average person doesn’t need to evaluate it, they can look at all of the studies that already exist comparing environmental impacts of various products. Many Life Cycle Assessments for example, do indeed, factor in transportation emissions as well as a huge amount of other factors. And they factor in usage, like if a new toilet paper is half the emissions of the old kind but requires three times as much, this is accounted for.

            Just because you are not aware of these types of assessments does not mean they do not exist.

            1. Siege*

              I find it really encouraging how very kindly you told me about something I was unaware of! I suppose you could somehow have been more unkind, but I’m not sure how.

              1. BubbleTea*

                Siege, you seem to be having a very strong reaction to people pointing you towards resources that you might find useful. No one has called you stupid or suggested you should know every single detail before contributing.

    2. pancakes*

      There is a lot written on that subject but I’m not sure there’s one place collecting it all. Will link separately.

      1. pancakes*


        From this article:

        “‘Our research indicates that moving a £100,000 pension pot with a traditional portfolio with oil and gas companies to a positive impact portfolio is the equivalent of taking five or six cars off the road a year,’ says David Macdonald, founder of The Path, a firm of advisers that specialises in positive impact investing. . . . The growth of funds invested along ESG principles — environmental, social or governance — has been rapid in recent years. Global ESG-linked funds took in nearly $350bn last year, compared with $165bn in 2019, according to data from Morningstar. Net assets held in UK-domiciled ESG funds went from £29bn at the beginning of 2017 to £71bn by the end of 2020, including active and passive funds.”

        (The FT has a whole section called “Moral Money,” and overall is a good source for serious, not-infotainment news on finance).

        Also: https://ccli.ubc.ca/enhancing-effective-esg-and-climate-governance-in-pension-fund-oversight/


        1. bamcheeks*

          this is ace, thank you! I changed from one pension provider to another this year because I changed jobs, and I was following the campaign to get my old one to divest from fossil fuels. You’ve just reminded me I’ve been meaning to check whether there’s a similar campaign for the new one.

            1. LW*

              I want to give you a HUGE THANKS for all these links and information that you’ve posted! I’m saving all of these to go over separately, but really, thank you so much for taking the time to do this!

              1. pancakes*

                You’re very welcome, I’m glad I had the time when this was posted! I have been taking time off for the past several months and was going to start a new project this week, but it keeps getting delayed.

        2. Ampersand*

          Thanks! This encouraged me to email my financial advisor to see where our investments stand re: sustainability and to make sure we’re not investing in fossil fuels. It’s nice to feel like I can make some changes that might make a difference.

    3. MagnusArchivist*

      Was coming here to also suggest pushing as a group to divest your retirement/pension from fossil fuels — or at least find out how your funds are invested and go from there. It’s hard (impossible?) to completely disinvest from fossil fuels, but also something that admin probably won’t even consider without pressure from employees.

  5. Lab Boss*

    My company has a portal to submit ideas- mostly it’s ideas for new products, but it can be anything “innovative.” Someone submitted a proposal for a sustainability committee through that and it worked its way through our review process, and is now being implemented. I’m on the idea review team and some of the things that gave the idea legs:

    -Highlighted both the customer appeal of being able to buy “greener” products and the investor appeal to funds/individuals that do values-driven investing. Give the company a reason beyond altruism.

    -Proposed short-term ideas for immediate success: adding more recycling locations, etc. There’s probably some general things you could propose to get the idea off the ground at your company.

    -Tied into other long-term ideas in our industry that are both green and competitive (in my industry that’s things like making disposable supplies dissolvable- less plastic in landfills, less trash to mess with in the lab). This is the most complex part, but if you can come up with industry-focused ideas for your company it will get your idea noticed.

    1. Sloanicota*

      I’d add – solar panels in your parking lots? Replace impermeable surfaces? Green roofs on your buildings? These things are doubly valuable as demonstration projects that can get other building managers on board. We have too many parking lots and roofs in most of our populated areas.

      1. All fired up*

        Convert mowed areas to native plants. Add trees for cooling and other great benefits. Eliminate watering, the landscaping should be selected to not need it.

        1. pancakes*

          Yes! I’ve been following this Build Soil account for a long while (I’ll link separately) and it’s a great source of info about what I believe is called landscape ecology. His focus is on planting chestnuts but the account talks about more than that.

            1. fieldpoppy*

              EV charge points. Improve the internal use of single use products /bottled water /packaging.

              1. RebelwithMouseyHair*

                Have the company issue all employees with a mug and a water bottle, and provide filtered water on tap and coffee machines that don’t need plastic cups.
                Make sure there are recycling bins everywhere and that the cleaning staff have been trained to put recycling stuff in the right bins.

            2. LW*

              Cool! Thank you! I believe I thanked you for different links earlier, these are also fantastic!

        2. NHNonprofitDirector*

          Yes! I work for an environmental nonprofit and we do a lot of education re: planting native species. There is so much wasted on traditional landscaping. Replacing traditional lawns and plantings with native, pollinator-friendly perennials. Here’s an example: https://butterflies.org/garden-design-and-consultation-commercial/
          If your facilities crew is as awesome as they sound, maybe they can get on board?

          Another option is to encourage the marketing department to sponsor local environmental orgs for events, etc.

          1. LW*

            Cool! That’s so beautiful!
            Getting the marketing apartment involved too is a great idea! Thank you so much for this!!

        3. quill*

          Where I am (mountain southwest of US) watering, especially lawns, is a HUGE problem.

          Things that are less individual consumption solutions, but corporate policies, depending on what you can get and what industry it is:

          – chemical and e-waste disposal initiatives. The company SHOULD have these via EHS already, but having a drop off day for whatever they already handle (batteries, laptops, paint, etc,) for the employees’ households can definitely save landfill space.

          – An erase and sell or erase and donate policy for working electronics that are replaced for speed, security, currency issues. Reduces electronic waste.

          1. pancakes*

            That’s a great idea, have a day (or two, annually) when people can bring in old electronics to be recycled, up-cycled, etc. Or coordinate one with other employers nearby, if it’s a smaller workplace.

            Another thing, although where we are there’s a tent at the farmers market, is textile recycling.

            Woodchipping of Christmas trees after the holiday? Where I am that’s something the parks department does, and people drag their old trees to a pile just inside one of the park gates. It always smells really nice when they’re doing the chipping, and for days afterward. The chips are used for mulch or ground cover or something.

          2. LW*

            Curbing E-waste is a brilliant idea, and reducing electronic waste in general is a great suggestion. Thank you for this!

            This is beyond the topic and I hope you don’t mind me posting this, but I had no idea just how problematic lawns were until I saw this video from Our Changing Climate. It’s probably not the best resource on the topic, but I’ll leave it here in any case. Thanks again for your comment.

      2. Münchner Kindl*

        Right now should be the best point to push Solar panels with the real argument of indepence of rising gas /raw oil prices – installing them on roofs you own or renting to solar companies should be easy.

        For transport, switching to non-gasoline trucks requires some research (One car company did a long-year test drive of a Hydrogen truck through US, but I don’t know how it ended; one car company a few years ago released an electric small transporter; I think in Australia they’re testing trucks with solar on the roof?), but if your company is big enough – or gets a group together – they can exert pressure on car manufacturers to start.

        Just don’t fall for hybrids, they’re a greenwashing figleaf by car industry.

  6. Viki*

    I honestly think, unless you’re at an executive/have the power to implement policy change/make those changes/having backing from someone with that power, you’ve hit and gone above and beyond someone who doesn’t have that ability.

    I also think the remote WFH aspect changes how green/sustainability companies can be, because if the workers are not in the office there’s a limit to out reach.

    Things my company (also tech and fairly green given our size) had done pre-pandemic: Subsidized transit passes (located in major cities) and parking passes were prioritized towards car poolers, which meant that our lot of around 200 was full of people driving with coworkers.

    Full day off for city clean up events organized with city with pay, twice a year.

    Composting and recycling done in a way that meant our facilities team couldn’t just combine things like they had before.

    Completely paperless.

    With WFH it is much harder to become a green company as everyone’s office is at home.

    1. bamcheeks*

      With WFH it is much harder to become a green company as everyone’s office is at home.

      I don’t see why that’s a barrier– it means thinking in a less traditional and more creative way, but it shouldn’t be a barrier. Can the company negotiate a better energy rate with a green company and offer employees incentives to switch to it? Loans for home insulation or solar panels/ground pumps? What kind of consumables are they offering to staff? Not controlling the working environment might mean different ways of promoting sustainable working, but it doesn’t make it impossible.

      1. Ann. On a Mouse.*

        I’m curious about the “offer employees incentives to switch to a new energy company” part. Around here, your electric utility is determined by where you live. If you live on A, B, or C streets, you get your electricity from Company 1. Live on D, E, or F street? You have to use Company 2 for your electricity. No choices are given.

        1. Sarah in Boston*

          In Massachusetts I have one choice for provider for the lines that come to my house but I have multiple choices for the producer as those two things have been decoupled here. So I’ve chosen a producer that has a large solar, wind and hydro portfolio even though it’s a slightly higher kW/H charge.

        2. J*

          Some states allow the consumer to choose their energy company- one that provides solar, for example.

          1. Lady_Lessa*

            I’ve had ads about one that provides all their electricity from renewable sources, but when I tried to track down exact information, I couldn’t.

            I also tend to consider the hidden costs, like mining the materials needed for solar panels, batteries, and end of life issues, like how do you dispose of windmill turbine blades.

        3. bamcheeks*

          haha how simple. In the UK part of privatisation of energy means giving us all the option to change energy supplier to get a better deal every year, so there are a bunch of energy company buying futures in energy units and selling it onto us at the rates they think will make them a profit in six months time. any way it works really well because our monthly costs have gone from £105 in January to £160 in March to £253 this month and probably £360 in October.

          1. BubbleTea*

            Just to add a frisson of excitement, a lot of the affordable small companies went bust in the last year, and their customers were randomly allocated to a new supplier with different prices and terms! Truly living in the UK is a blessing and a joy these days…

          2. BubbleTea*

            Just to add a frisson of excitement, a lot of the affordable small companies went bust in the last year, and their customers were randomly allocated to a new supplier with different prices and terms! Truly living in the UK is a blessing and a joy these days…

        4. Münchner Kindl*

          Really? Wow. That’s terrible. Is it part of the outdaten US electricity infrastructure, or just the usual monopolism?

          In my country, consumers have the right to free choice of energy provider because it’s one powernet after all, so we have 4 big established green renewable providers, and locals, e.g. my city-owned power company started years ago a long-term plan to be x% renewable at year y (100% for private households; 100% including public transport were both reached, now we’re on the way to 100% including industry. Heat is excluded and why we still depend on Putin’s gas.

    2. Rose*

      But aren’t all those carpoolers not commuting at all anymore? Using their coffee mugs at home instead of paper to-go cups? Probably still fairly paperless if one is not even in the same place to hand paper from one person to another?

      I’m not understanding how these reduced your company’s “greenability”. They sound like net improvements to me.

  7. Confused_Pineapple*

    Is your office already composting? Does anyone in your office want to opt-in to a community garden? These are small things that can help a ton. Composting keeps food waste out of landfill>less methane in the air>reducing greenhouse effect. Community gardens at a place where you already go for work>no food transport emissions, reduced water usage vs commercial farming, AND no pesticide runoff into the watershed (plus cheaper/free food for participants!). Other random ideas: occasional upcycling events, a work buy nothing group, or work garage sale to keep stuff out of landfills & give them a new lease on life. Encouraging furniture/construction/renovation decisions in the office to be more sustainable (sounds like you already started this with the facilities team but are, for ex., your office chairs/meeting tables made of fast-farmed wood or sustainably sourced wood?).

    1. Constance Lloyd*

      If the office is composting, would it be possible to provide employees with appropriate bags and allow them to collect compost at home and drop off in the office bins? Obviously there are plenty of ways this could go poorly, but it could be worth exploring.

    2. Aspiring Chicken Lady*

      Our local area has a composting service — they provide the bucket, you fill it and they pick up and compost. There’s a charge, but I think you may also be able to get a certain amount of lovely compost back as well.

      I wonder if a company could get an account (with a nice big bucket) and let the lunch scraps and donations from home get picked up from there. Might be better than trying to have compost at your actual work site.

    3. LW*

      I really love your suggestions, thank you so much! A community garden would be wonderful. <3

    4. Zoe Karvounopsina*

      Our office recently got re-designed, and I might add ‘when/how are we supposed to compost’ to my list of Questions now that we’ve moved (other questions: why does our stationary cupboard not have shelves? why do the shelves you have pointed us at not fit the cupboard?)

  8. Hiring Mgr*

    this is pretty common in many places, but giving discounted or pretax, etc public transportation options for employees (bus/subway/train pass)

    1. pancakes*

      Yes, I have used that option often and really appreciate it.

      Streetsblog USA is a good place to look for news about public transit, bicycling, walking initiatives, safety, etc.

    2. bookworm*

      Related, offering a “parking cash out” if your organization provides free parking to employees is another option. That is, add the cost of the parking that the employer is covering to the paycheck of employees who don’t use the parking.

  9. lost academic*

    Donate your technical skills to groups that need them that can’t afford to have highly qualified staff. This is the number one thing – my career has always been in environmental work, on all sides, and what I see constantly is that there is so little technical experience connected with NGOs, even the best ones. It makes things like lawsuits and petitions doomed to fail because they don’t have the right experience to achieve what they want. You can provide a piece of the puzzle in places you care about, even on the backend.

    Outside of that, educate yourself on how to be effective in the areas that interest you so that you’re not just another well meaning volunteer without the background to contribute outside of being a set of hands. That’s great, but organizations have a lot of those. That sounds super harsh, I know, but for an anonymous comment I want to be succinct and clear. You want to do a lot of long lasting good, stuff like picking up trash along a river is wonderful but you are probably equipped to do more if you have the time and inclination.

    1. Ali + Nino*

      +1 One organization I can think of is Catchafire, try looking them up. Maybe Idealist (non-profit job board) will also have some names of orgs that could benefit from your skills.

    2. wet-coaster*

      On this note, depending on how receptive your company is you could push for them to subsidize this. I worked for a company that would give us a paid hour (in a set time-frame that I can’t remember. One a week? Every two weeks?) for charity work.

      If the company is willing to pay employees for an hour of providing technical skills to an NGO that would possibly encourage co-workers to take part, and be great optics for the company (some to put on the “Corporate Social Responsibility” part of the website) – and possibly volunteer additional time if, say, they are getting paid for one hour of a three-hour commitment.

      I’m not certain if these are still a thing, but the same company was also involved in micro-loans. They gave a certain amount of money, a committee found a few prospects, and the employees voted on who to support. That sounds weird typing it out (and is not exactly an environmental cause), but people like seeing the human story.

      1. MsM*

        More simply, if your company matches donations, you can make sure environmental orgs are included in that benefit, make sure employees are aware of the option, and make sure it’s easy for them to take advantage of it. (And if they don’t, you can see what would be involved in making that happen.)

        1. LW*

          I’m not sure where to best add my reply so that everyone sees it, but I’m so grateful for these suggestions! Educating yourself for a specific, pro-bono skillset and donations matchings are both fantastic suggestions, thank you!

    3. Mints*

      +1 There’s an organization techforcampaigns.org which connects tech workers with state races. It supports Democratic candidates, but I think realistically, that’s where environmentally-minded volunteers should focus. You can look up the candidates to specifically seek out people who focus on environment. I’ll also note that they put up and take down opportunities fairly regularly – if there’s nothing that matches right now, check again in a week or so.

      I also don’t want to discount being a pair of hands. It might not seem as impactful and making your whole organization go to composting or something, but it’s so concrete and so clearly positive. I think it’s easy to get caught up in the minutia of complex issues, but planting native plants along your local creek and then seeing the critters that start living there, is actually a wonderful thing.

      1. Jim Bob*

        Employers should not be pushing candidates for office as part of a work-related charity drive. Full stop.

  10. Falling Diphthong*

    I truly think that few individual actions are as effective as voting. (Or convincing other people to vote.) Vote for the sort of people who might pass environmental legislation that affects everyone, most especially the large corporations–cutting their emissions by 10% will have a much bigger impact than you forgoing a vacation to reduce your carbon emissions. Vote for those people even if you only sorta align with them. (As Sarah Vowell put it re choosing the lesser evil: Yes, less evil is better than more evil.)

    1. bamcheeks*

      Voting is a very small act by itself, especially if you’re only talking about state/national level elections. If you want to influence change using democratic and civil means, then simply voting means you’re letting other people do all the selection work of who you get to vote for. To really make an influence, you need to figure out how to be involved in the selection process, campaign or organise to make it easier for more people to vote, at as many levels (local/municipal/regional/national) as possible.

      1. kittycontractor*

        Getting actively involved is huge: see if there are any local boards to serve on (there can be a lot that are volunteer based); know what limits the entity you are advocating to have placed on them; get involved in your party’s local governing board; volunteer on campaigns; donate (not very popular but money to a campaign is invaluable, especially at a local level); and finally, run for office yourself. Few things will give you more influence and more understanding than actually holding the office yourself.

    2. Thatguy*

      Removed; I recognize this topic is inherently political, but this will become derailing. Please stay focused on practical advice to the letter-writer.

      1. Falling Diphthong*

        Fair; I am reacting to the oft-cited idea that environmental issues must come down to each individual’s actions and that’s it.

        1. pancakes*

          That’s been less and less cited for the past several years because of all those articles about two thirds of worldwide greenhouse gas emissions coming from 90 companies, etc.

          Fwiw, I agree that voting is tricky if not impossible to address at work beyond giving people generous time to go do it (and for every election, not just the big one we have every four years). That should be as widespread as possible. It should be required of employers, or the days made some sort of holiday.

          My own stance on voting is best captured by a photo of a bumper sticker I saw that said something along the lines of, “I believe voting is a bourgeois scam . . .
          and I vote!”

          I mean, think of all the people who are not in favor of reproductive rights being taken away, voted accordingly, and are nonetheless living in a place where reproductive rights are being taken away. Voting often feels like it’s of limited utility in the US, access is often and increasingly challenged or gutted (Voting Rights Act), states with a relatively small population (say, Wyoming) have the same representation in the Senate as states that have 50x the population, so on and so forth. But it’s generally important to do it anyhow! There aren’t many scenarios where not voting is justifiable, in my opinion.

          1. Münchner Kindl*

            Yes. I understand the frustration of voting for the non-evil party, they get to government, and they still don’t take the drastic action.
            Or having to choose between all those…

            But I can’t bear to throw away a vote that thousands of people – women and blacks especially – fought until death for – not as soldiers in wars, but in suffragettes and civil rights struggles? And that in non-Western countries people are still getting killed over: journalists for reporting, Human Right NGOs for observing, Unions for organizing, all connected to human rights and modern democracy?

            Voting is the very least a person can do. All additional steps, like joining a political party or community group, advocating or standing up for election, require energy, the right talents which not everybody has.
            But everybody can educate themselves and then vote.

  11. LoveEarth*

    I’m grateful this conversation is being had. I like Dr. Ayana Elizabeth Johnson’s work. She created a venn diagram for folks to consider how their unique skills, interests, and place in the world can be used to tip the scales towards a healthy climate. I don’t know if links can include here but if you search @ClimateVenn on instagram you will find the account and some really great, relevant info. https://www.ayanaelizabeth.com/climatevenn

  12. RunShaker*

    If your company is large enough & has employees that live 20 miles away or more, maybe a van pool if WFH isn’t an option. My old company had a van pool pre-COVID. There was car pooling incentives as well for employees that didn’t qualify for van pool that offered rewards program.

  13. Chwiecko*

    So I actually work for a climate action company that helps companies to calculate their carbon footprint, and then purchase carbon offsets from projects around the world. We also offer services to help with creating a plan for reduction if companies are interested. It’s called ClimatePartner, and we have just recently expanded to the US market.

  14. Thistle Pie*

    Air travel has a huge carbon impact, so reducing that can actually make a difference. Another thing to look into is the International Living Futures Institute’s JUST label. It’s kind of like a report card on a business for equity and sustainability.

    1. EarlGrey*

      Seconding the suggestion to look into JUST. It’s a really serious audit of how well your company is living up to its ideals, and a powerful recruitment / retention tool if you publish the results. Even if you don’t use JUST or similar labels specifically they could give you a good template for a policy with substance behind it.

  15. Sloanicota*

    So, coming at this from the other side (as an employee of a green group that gets approached by corporations who want? to help? maybe?) – it’s a bit tricky, but lately in the corporate world there’s a push for them to provide their professional services for a good cause. So like, if you’re an accountant, offer accounting services pro bono to a nonprofit that does the type of work you’re interested in. That is certainly more valuable than asking a nonprofit to organize your office to do a non-skilled workday – sadly, I can tell you from the nonprofit side that we’re often doing more work babysitting a bunch of accountants to pull weeds than the value of the labor, which could be more efficiently done in other ways. (Think about it: office workers typically have specific time and geography limitations, are often interested in an enriching staff experience more than outcome, and infallibly ask us to organize a special day just for them, rather than joining an existing work opportunity). If you are making a *hefty* corporate donation I am happy to organize a fun day for your employees, but I needs to be at least $10K per day to make the balance work.

    Easiest: ask your company to sponsor one of those employee giving programs and match the donation.

    1. ApollosTorso*

      +1 to this. Donating skilled work – either as an individual or as an organization.

      If your manager approves it for your department and will help you push it to the rest of the company.

      Many companies have volunteer days or programs as a benefit. If yours doesn’t push for that.

      And then make sure it’s not used for team building – which is work. That probably should just be paid as normal hours.

      If your company won’t do it, my preference would be t consider for a full time or part time work at an organization that already does these things.

      1. ApollosTorso*

        Also there are organizations such as Ruby For Good where tech workers get together and donate their time and skillset for the weekend to nonprofits. Many people there were there with coworkers. It’s like a conference that is mission driven.

  16. sciencegirl*

    1 word: vote. Unfortunately the actions of individuals is essentially meaningless without lasting policy change. This comes from a long standing environmentalist who realized that last 20 years of living as sustainable a life as possible basically meant nothing in the grand scheme of things. There are cultural shifts you could try to impose upon your companies leadership but usually this turns out to be nothing more than lip service.

    1. Sloanicota*

      Yeah, recall that the entire workforce ceasing commuting overnight due to Covid had little measurable impact on climate emissions – because they are mostly from factories or utilities. I can’t imagine the effort it would take for well meaning individuals to top that change, in a world where people refused to even protect their own loved ones from a virus after a while.

        1. Sloanicota*

          Oh good, I actually hope you’re right (it’s not my area of practice, I just remember reading all the articles at the time and being really bummed). I still think we need to make large structural changes to overcome climate change rather than focusing on individual actions – particularly ones that are the most burdensome for the lil people.

    2. bamcheeks*

      I completely agree with you about needing structural and policy change, but I more and more think that voting alone is a really poor way to affect that. Being an active citizen means aggressively looking for opportunities to influence change at every level and figuring out how to affect the process that decides who you can vote for, who else can vote, and how many of them vote the way you do.

      1. Hlao-roo*

        In addition to your active citizen list, it also means contacting your representatives (local, state, and federal in the US) to tell them what policies you support and oppose! Politicians use some ratio (I think it’s around 1:1000) to determine how many people care about an issue in their district. So if 2 people write to a politician saying “I support bill 521,” the politician will assume there are about 2,000 constituents who feel that way.

      2. Stuckinacrazyjob*

        Nod. I live in the US. I vote but with the knowledge that all the countries resources will be spent mollycoddling fascists and paying cops.

  17. WonkyStitch*

    IDK about in the workplace but I was listening to the Gaslit Nation podcast yesterday and they said one thing people can do is to call their utility company and ask to switch to renewable clean energy. If it’s not available, ask when it will become available.

    1. Elder Millennial*

      Especially since the biggest impact tech companies have on climate change is in their electricity usage. Recycling and less paper use is nice, but it’s probably almost invisible in impact compared to the amount of electricity that is necessary to keep the servers running.

      1. Münchner Kindl*

        Then I’ll plug again:

        Use Ecosia as search engine instead of google in your office (and privately). It plants a tree for every search, and is over-powered by renewable energy. (And safer for your data than google).

    2. Green and pleasant*

      You can go wider than this-ask everyone in your supply chain what their environnemental policies and initiatives are. Companies generally are becoming more aware that their clients want this as a feature.

      Also, if you go the offsetting route, there are verification services available. Not all offsetting schemes are equally good, or account for ecological concerns. https://www.scsglobalservices.com/services/carbon-offset-verification

      If your company is a big one and hires recent grads or post grads, then consider sponsoring graduate studentships in climate science. This doesn’t have to be only financial, most beneficial for the student is if you can offer mentoring in software development alongside their scientific tutors- most of climate science involves code, and training is patchy at best (source: I’m a climate scientist)

  18. coffeeandpearls*

    Assistance in making things as paperless as possible (options for secure electronic signatures, help archiving paper records and proper disposal).

    Additionally, I noticed people in my dept. always dumping tech on our bi-annual “scrappy days” (which is when we put anything out in the hall to be scavenged by whoever wants it, picked up for recycling or taken by Habitat Re-Store. Having “scrappy days” in your physical office reduces waste and makes sure things are recycled properly. Additionally, consider offering solutions for slightly worn tech. Instead of ordering a new keyboard when my letters worn off (which was the suggested solution!), I ordered keyboard letter stickers on Etsy.

    1. Lab Boss*

      I’d love scrappy days! My company used to do periodic tech sales to unload useable items, but new management decreed that it wasn’t worth IT’s time to do all the logistics of a sale… so now the slightly old but fully useful tech sits in a basement and rots until it’s SO old we have to throw it away.

      1. Yet Another Unemployed Librarian*

        Could it be donated to someone who could use it? (I worked at a small college for 5 years and watched my husband’s tech company replace his huge fancy monitors 3 times in that timespan… meanwhile it took me a year to get one additional small one for my desk).

        1. Lab Boss*

          “Could” in the sense that it would be possible, yes. Right now there’s no corporate interest in spending the time to do anything except let it sit a while then throw it away- hopefully our newish sustainability committee can get an improvement rolling.

          1. Yet Another Unemployed Librarian*

            Right, there’s definitely a cost in logistics and effort on both ends to actually get the items moved somewhere else. Just an idea.

  19. Meow*

    I know Allison specifically is asking for ways LW can help while staying at the current job, but the letter seems ambiguous to me as to whether they are committed to this exact position or just staying in tech in general. So with that being said…

    LW, it sounds to me like you have already made a huge impact at your current job! If you can accomplish that much and still feel like it isn’t enough, then I’m not sure what choice you have but to strongly consider looking for a different job that either 1. has a culture already committed to helping the environment or 2. working for a non-profit or the like whose purpose is environmental preservation. (or 3, separate your job and personal life and commit to volunteering off hours, but I’m guessing you’ve considered that or already do that)

    #2 will probably be a pay cut, but if that’s possible for you, you may find it worth it. When I worked for a non-profit, I loved it. Even though my job was to do the same tech work I did anywhere else, it made me happy knowing that I was a cog in a wheel that helped so many people. And the culture there was full of kind, friendly people who also got fulfillment from helping others.

    1. LegalEagle*

      Yes to all of this! LW, you mentioned you love your job but I don’t know if it’s that you love the company, your coworkers, the work you do, etc. If what you love is the work you do (or your coworkers) it is 100% worth it to look for jobs that will let you do that work for an organization that is working towards climate justice. Advocacy orgs and non-profits need a wide variety of staffers, you may be surprised at what opens up with your background.

      I work for a non-profit in a field I’m passionate about and I cannot tell you what a relief it is to be able to go to work every day in a place that’s fighting for something I believe in. I don’t want to make it sound like getting a job in the field you’re passionate about is easy, it isn’t, unfortunately there are far fewer NGO jobs available than there are jobs at private companies. But I’d really consider looking into it, the peace of mind I’ve found from spending all my working hours focused on a cause I care about can’t be overstated.

      1. Chris too*

        I’d just like to point out there are areas of government also working hard in various environmental stewardship things.

        1. LegalEagle*

          I knew there was something I was leaving out! Thank you! At all levels of government too, you don’t have to move to DC to work on environmental issues in the government.

          1. LW*

            Thank you for your kind thoughts! Unfortunately I have to admit that my current skillset is only very narrowly applicable to my specific field and not much outside of that! So after some thought I’ve come to the conclusion that doing this work and donating 1% of my income would be more helpful than switching to a full-time position in an NGO. For now!
            Someone suggested in a separate thread to pick up skills that are in demand by NGOs, then donating these part-time, which I think is a great
            idea. And I’m very happy to hear that you’ve had a good experience!

  20. Mill Miker*

    If you’re writing websites/apps/software then things like file size and performance have direct and indirect impacts on the environment, especially if your user base is on mobile. If the site has a lot of images and scripts and animations it will tax the processor(s). If there’s a lot of background data connections the phone can sleep it’s antenna. This drains the batter faster, to the point where some of the worth offenders have a non-negligible cost-per-minute that you can actually see on some users energy bills. It also wears the battery out faster, leading to more waste – especially since a shot battery usually means replacing the whole phone.

    There are services like https://websiteemissions.com/ that can help you calculate how much of an environmental impact your websites are having.

  21. WomEngineer*

    Would people be interested in volunteering? You could look into local groups that do litter cleanups, community garden maintenance, beekeeping, etc. and get a group together. If you have any employee resource groups, you could advertise through them as well.

    For the company as a whole, you could see if there are any Earth Day or sustainability-focused events that you could sponsor and/or send volunteers.

    Also, you mentioned that facilities was onboard with some of your efforts. Have they looked into LEED certification for the building? (Or other green / energy efficient certifications)

    1. pancakes*

      Great ideas. I’ve seen lots of work groups doing volunteer days in my local park with the Parks Dep’t people who coordinate that.

      Passive building / passive house technology is another tech to look into regarding facilities.

  22. Somewhere in Texas*

    In a recent job offer call I spoke about wanting some flexibility in my schedule to do volunteer work for something I was passionate about. This is an annual thing for me.

    My new-boss-to-be said something that struck a chord for me. It was the thought that I am a better employee if there are things I’m passionate about outside of work. I’d work harder to make space (and money) for this passion outside of work. What orgs can you work with locally that have the impact you want? Does your work allow for volunteer hours?

  23. Sel*

    If you’re in the US (only saying this because I have no idea how this works in other countries) and you have a retirement plan, you can divest your investments from fossil fuels. https://fossilfreefunds.org/ has directions on how to do this, and https://350.org/ is another climate activist organization that routinely holds workshops and gives out information on how to divest investments from fossil fuels. If you want to go bigger as well, you might be able to get in touch with your local 350.org chapter and see if they’ll help you target divestment at the company level too, but I’m not entirely sure how that works. But starting with your personal funds is definitely a way you, as an individual, can do something!

  24. Just Me*

    A lot of what you mention are good ways to do this–such as office fundraisers for environmental justice and revamping your office space to be environmentally friendly. Some other things that I have seen instituted on the company-wide level:
    -work perks for employees who use sustainable transportation to get to work (at OldJob I think you could go home earlier on Fridays in the summer if you biked)
    -on an employee’s birthday, the company makes a donation to a charity or cause of the employee’s choosing
    -having discounts or perks for clients who engage in sustainable practices or who work on environmental causes
    -you, as the employee, can see if you can become a board member for an environmental justice nonprofit. Some companies will actively encourage their employees to do things like this and will let them have more flexible schedules to accommodate board duties. You can also volunteer to use some of your unrelated talents for environmental organization (my fiancée works in digital marketing and sometimes will do some free SEO consulting for these types of orgs).
    -have a section on your company website for organizations or charities you support. Depending on the type of company you have, you could run fundraisers where you match donations from clients/customers for like a month.
    -giving employees extra PTO as volunteer days where they engage in community service projects

    1. Just Me*

      I’ll add that OP may not have the power to directly implement some of these things, but they can talk to their manager or HR and petition for one or two at their company to start.

    2. Not Tom, Just Petty*

      I just have to be that person and ask, because I am super curious, and old and cynical. I’m not trying to argue about this…I genuinely want to know if you worked at company where this was successfully implemented.
      Regarding the donation to charity on behalf of the employee. Is there a list of approved organizations?
      Is it something like the United Way and you get to chose where the money is directed within the organization?
      Because that can go sideways very quickly.
      Not just because a staffer picks a “questionable” organization, but what if someone higher up goes rogue and requires all his/her staff to donate to either X or Y?
      (additional information. Donations have always been made by my company to organizations listed in the obituaries of employees’ family members. So I see it as a functioning thing. I’m just curious about “that one person.”)

      1. Just Me*

        Some of these were implemented at companies where I worked, some where other employees worked.

        With the donations on behalf of the employee–my fiancee’s company did this. It was a small for-profit company run by young people with little knowledge of how nonprofits and charities so, honestly, they weren’t doing a list of approved org’s like they should have. It was more like a, “On your birthday you can either have a cake and gift sent to your house or we will privately donate that amount to a charity of your choosing.” If OP wants to try to implement this at their org, they should talk to HR to work through the things you mention above.

      2. pancakes*

        Do a search for employee directed charitable contributions and you’ll find some articles, etc., about it.

  25. Felicity*

    There’s a bunch of small/achievable things you might be able to do to help;

    -Advocate for giving employees a coffee mug and water bottle to reduce the use of single use cups
    -If your company uses the small pods of creamers for coffee have them switch to containers of creamer/milk options to reduce waste (also tends to be more affordable to buy a couple of containers a week rather than a bulk box), same can be done for sugar to reduce use of packets
    -If your company uses a Keurig or other single cup coffee maker advocate for a pot maker instead to reduce the waste of the pods
    -Contact your local recycling plant and confirm what items are recyclable, make sure to label the bins accordingly with what can/can’t be recycled
    -Have your company invest in a compost bin
    -See if a “getting caught green handed” campaign would go over well at your company, this is when you see someone doing something good for the environment at work they get a small gift like a $5 gift card
    -Make sure all employees have a recycle bin as well as a trash bin
    -If you find people are using trash bins/recycle bins interchangeably, put a lid on it…. you’d be surprised how many people change to using the appropriate bin when they have to take a second to think which lid to open

  26. MDM*

    Director of an environmental non profit here. My advice would be to get in touch with local to you environmental organizations and ask what they need. Common needs that we have are money and voices. Money: we enter our charity in a local race, runners raise money and it’s awesome when an office enters a team of runners to support us.
    Voices: we need systems change. See what campaigns your local groups are running and see if you can add your voice to them. It’s actually really powerful when the business sector speaks publicly as an ally. If you can’t sign on as an office, sign up individually, but spread the word to your coworkers.

    1. AGD*

      This. I have a very busy job in higher ed (a multi purpose undergraduate advisor, at least in practice), but I give a lot of money to an environmental law organization.

      I also pestered my institution about divesting from fossil fuels. A day after my most recent attempt, I got to stop, because they announced we were doing so.

    2. EarlGrey*

      Totally seconding the suggestion to be an advocate. Your elected officials will hear from environmental groups that, say, a building performance standard will save energy. Then they’ll hear from a conservative group that it will impose huge costs on the business sector. You can be a voice that says, my company improved our facilities’ energy performance and it was cost effective and a great experience. “As a professional in X field, I know this is doable and helps our business” is a powerful message.

  27. Warrior Princess Xena*

    One good thing to do – you mentioned that the building got refurbished and a lot of people are recommending that supplies etc be purchased from green locations. Which is good! But something that can happen is that all the old not-green stuff gets tossed in favor of new furniture, tech, building materials, etc, sending it straight to the landfill. Push for old equipment and old supplies to be either refurbished instead of being thrown away, donated or sold at discounts, and if they have to be disposed then disposed in appropriate locations. This especially applies to computer tech. There are places that will happily take old laptops/towers/monitors and refurbish and donate them. If something has to be destroyed for security, contract with a vendor that is experienced with safely disposing of e-waste.

  28. As per Elaine*

    Things that I have seen people successfully advocate for in their offices:
    – Composting
    – Switching to greener products, e.g. recycled copy paper
    – Advocating for infrastructure changes like lights with motion sensors that turn off on their own after a period of no activity (usually as part of an office renovation)
    – Starting a Green Committee to identify and advocate for potential changes (although the committee itself was variably functional/effective)
    – Starting an ewaste program
    – Getting social responsibility (ESG funds) options added to the 401k plan

    We tried to get our cable supplier to not send everything in individual plastic bags, but that wasn’t successful (apparently it’s part of the manufacturing process).

    Harvard University also has a Green Office Program with a bunch of individual actions they’re trying to get departments to commit to – I’ll add the link in a reply, if I can find it.

    1. As per Elaine*

      I’ll also say that you’ll generally have the best success for things that don’t cost extra money, or when the cost is negligible. The recycled paper was an easy switch, but compostable cutlery and utensils dragged for years until someone found a supplier that could offer them at a price comparable to the plastic option.

      (Though, full disclosure, a lot of the “compostable” stuff was kind of a problem, because compostable bioplastics generally need a digester to really break them down, and we didn’t have a local compost hauler with the facilities to handle that stuff.)

    2. Not that kind of doctor*

      Yes to motion-sensor lights! Or perhaps timed lights that turn off at night. I used to live in an apartment across from a tech company’s office building, and the lights stayed on ALL NIGHT, even when there was no one there. To be fair to the employees, it’s not always clear whether you’re the last one leaving and you should shut off the lights for the whole suite/floor, nor do they necessarily have access to the light switches. So make it automated.

  29. Sharks Are Cool*

    This… may not be the most helpful comment. But if you’re trying to leverage your not-environmentally focused job as a platform for environmental action, do be aware that your coworkers may have different capacities/bandwidth. I say this because when I was making under living wage working a desk job with a painful foot injury, the Green News (or whatever it was called) section in the Newsletter struck me as INCREDIBLY tone deaf when it had recommendations such as “Buy an electric car!” or “Walk to work!” Like, I was just trying to get through my day, you know? I’m VERY on board with environmental activism, but its hard to do anything about it when you’re at a survival level.

    1. pancakes*

      I’m sure it felt bad to see all that in the newsletter, but I think it’s more reasonable for people to set the newsletter aside (or turn the page) than for the organization to not run any content about those topics. Similarly, I don’t think it’s reasonable to read that sort of content as ordering you or hectoring your to make those changes. Feeling personally put out or put upon seems disproportionate, and not the intent of that type of article. They’re suggestions, not a list of requirements or something.

      1. LW*

        Thank you for the comment OP. I agree with you on people’s individual bandwidths – after all it’s an office, we’re here to work and the last thing I’d want to do is make people feel under pressure in the space we have to share together for over 8 hours a day. A lot of people also don’t want to be reminded of the state of the environment, which I also absolutely understand.

        I did want to say though, that what I overwhelmingly found after agitating for these things in the office – like writing a green newsletter and bringing petitions to ask people to sign (two potentially very annoying things :) – was that as long as I did all the work, people were so happy that someone was doing it. Judging from small conversations my colleagues were generally exhausted but also wanting to help – so listening to them and giving them the option to act in small ways without having to do extra work seemed to be helpful.

        Also, +1 on tone deaf newsletters. :)

        pancakes I just have to mention again that I REALLY appreciate every single reply you’ve posted here! I think this is the 3rd time I’m replying to a thread you’re in! Thank you!

        1. Sharks Are Cool*

          LW, I am always happy to sign environmentally-minded petitions! Sounds like you are being mindful in your approach.

          To Pancakes’ point: Fair! Maybe it wouldn’t have even twigged my radar if I wasn’t the person assigned to compile the newsletter, and I did have a lot of rage toward my employer at that point for a a variety of reasons. But I don’t think it’s unreasonable to take it a teensy bit personally when an employer-sanctioned publication has suggestions that would be impossible to follow because the employer is not paying you enough to meet your basic needs. I think that vetting any materials (environmental or otherwise) for ableism is also a good idea—although I can admit that I had a lot of rage in that area too at that time in my life, having gone from an ultra-marathoner to someone who was in pain walking across campus.

          1. pancakes*

            Sorry, I didn’t understand that they made you put together the newsletter and directed it to that degree and were under-paying you. That would anger just about anyone I think!

  30. Where is 'Tech for Good'?!*

    Further to the OP’s question, do people have recommendations of tech companies who are actually “good”? I’m hoping to work in tech eventually but have doubts about what to do with my burning passion for both sustainability and social justice! (I know this doesn’t answer OP’s question but hope it’s appropriate for this thread…)

    1. As per Elaine*

      The specific companies you’ll find are likely local to you (though more are hiring remote, these days), but here are examples of tech jobs that might meet your criteria:

      – Tech work for a nonprofit (not necessarily a tech-focused nonprofit; most places above a certain size needs helpdesk and/or someone to manage their infrastructure, whether on-premise or virtual)
      – Tech companies whose clients are nonprofits – software, other sorts of support
      – For-profit companies with some sort of social or environmental mission or effect. A solar panel installer would be an example here, or a company that makes an app or product that helps people or companies reduce environmental impact. I know a guy who works for a company that helps orgs pivot to sustainable investing, for example.

    2. bamcheeks*

      Follow-up to As per Elaine– to research this, go and look up your favourite orgs/ non-profits / pressure groups on LinkedIn, and see who is working for them in tech roles. Just to do a really basic, obvious one, I just looked up Greenpeace, clicked on Employees, and then searched Job title: IT. There are 26 results! You could look at organisations protecting land rights, wildlife, doing waste management, green energy — they all need the usual range of business IT functions, and some of them will also need specialised functions if they have a particularly innovative technical need.

    3. Call Me Dr. Dork*

      I develop software for a fintech (financial technology) company that is doing several things that are “good”:

      * there is an annual sustainability report that is available to the public
      * they have signed on to the UN Global Compact and a Net Zero alliance for financial companies
      * there is a DEI program with both a bunch of employee groups (ERGs) and actual measurable goals to make sure everyone is welcome and that underrepresented people are hired and promoted

      Of course, smaller companies won’t be doing this, but my experiences is that bigger companies are more diverse and welcoming anyway (do not get me started about being older and female working for brogrammer startups…).

    4. Don't Call Me Shirley*

      Consider applying your tech skills to transportation and public utilities – making public transit systems better makes them better used, maybe look at electric vehicle or similar development, or smart electrical grids to be less lossy with renewable injections, etc.

    5. pancakes*

      In addition to what other people have said, look at your favorite organizations, publications, publishers, etc., that aren’t on linked in and see who does their tech. Their sites will have credits for designers, maybe hosting, etc., somewhere.

    6. Upsider*

      I work for a company called Upside, which is both an amazing place to work, and in the “Tech for Good” space. Our product is an app that gives people cash back on gas, grocery, and restaurant purchases, so helps people afford everyday necessities, AND we purchase carbon offsets for the gallons of gas purchased on the app (which at this point is a LOT of gas), so the company has committed 1% of all its revenue to sustainability initiatives. I highly recommend it as a place to work for folks in tech who are looking to have a positive impact with their career.

  31. K*

    As someone who does environmental for a company I feel I can add some insight. Everyone in a company can come up with ideas and implement ideas to improve the environment.

    First thing I would do is check to see if you have an environmental person/people at your company. Check to see if your company has a “mantra” on how the company is going improve their impact on the environment. Many company have 2030/2040/2050 goals. If your company doesn’t have a plan, ask why?

    Next I would educate yourself on areas of environmental improvement (carbon reduction/neutrality, clean energy, renewable energy, energy/water/waste reduction, recycling, etc.).

    Then I would self evaluate on what I can do in my job to improve the environment. Is that improving the recycling in my office? Eliminate/reduce paper usage? Change fluorescent lights to LEDs? Can you use your tech knowledge to implement projects that use less resources?

    I know you mentioned a failed environmental committee but maybe you can try again with people who are interested? But you have to have the company 100% on board and apart of the group. And with a budget to implement changes.

    Something we did (pre-Covid) was celebrate Earth Day? We had tables set up in our cafeteria, and invited contractors/community members to come in and speak on how their companies/businesses helped the environmental. We educated associates. Gave associates prizes and snacks. We gave away reusable grocery bags, tree saplings, tomato plants, etc. We really made it fun and the associates were engaged.

    I really admire your passion. If your company doesn’t support a long term environmental plan, there are companies out there that do and I am sure they would love to have people like you working for them. I know I would be.

    1. pbnj*

      I’ve had to provide information for sustainability surveys at work because many companies are considering sustainability as a factor when selecting vendors because that’s what the end customers are demanding. I don’t know if OP’s company is seeing that yet, but I imagine they will. If this is a small company, perhaps asking about how your customers rank sustainability in vendor selection will get the ball rolling. You really need management backing, and I’d recommend a sustainability team to brainstorm and implement solutions. I’m not sure what renovations you’ve done, but energy usage is a heavy-hitter so if you can get them to consider ways to use less power such insulation or window tenting or even switching to a “green” electricity provider. We found that those electric rates were less than what we were paying so why not switch?

    2. LW*

      Thank you for your comment, I found it very supportive and helpful. :) I will look into these things!

  32. Your friendly neighborhood Zen Buddhist*

    oh hai, I work in an ITish role for an enviromental division in state government. Here’s what comes to mind:

    1. what does tech waste/recycling look like at your company? your operations team may be the ones handling this now so collaborate with them
    2. give time/labor/skills rather than money (although money is also awesome) — see what projects and grants are already out there and see how you can get involved
    3. get involved with local/state politics – vote and encourge others to vote

    honestly the most impactful things I do are supporting other people to do their full-time greening work. my passion is not nessicarly for the environment but outside of work, i know that providing meaningful support to those doing the work is the best way forward.

  33. CatCat*

    A couple ideas for a workplace in which employees must report to an office: (1) employer covers, wholly or partially, the cost of public transit passes, and (2) employer provides a bike commuter benefit to help offset the cost of bike wear and tear (doesn’t have to be a lot, I know one that provides $20/month and that would help toward tune-ups and new tires when needed), secure bike parking (like bike lockers or limited access bike cage, just not locking your bike to a rack outside), and a private space like a small locker room where bike commuters can freshen up/change (a bathroom can be okay-ish, but that will tie up the accessible stall).

  34. acallidryas*

    Oh, great question! I have some additional suggestions:

    1) Two of the ways individuals and organizations have the biggest impact on the environment are food and air travel. Ask your organization to have a policy supporting the least emissions travel and not traveling if it isn’t necessary, and offer vegetarian options at all events. If you have regular lunches a meatless Monday or something like that can help.

    2) What are your retirement plans? Is there an option that allows you to divest from fossil fuels or otherwise have an ESG benefit? If not, ask for this. If you have a union, socially responsible retirement funds are something that can actually be included in a contract.

    3) Generation 180 is an organization that works on relational organizing and could have some resources on hosting a lunch and learn on EVs, for instance, in your office.

    4) In your personal life, make sure you’re voting for environmental policies and get involved locally. There are so many decisions that are made at a local level and not enough people show up! The best thing is to figure out some ways to make sure solar is more available in the community, that your county is using EVs, that your city/county/state have a renewable energy plan. And if you can get your company to support some environmental policies – they probably won’t support politicians, but might weigh in on, for instance, a renewable standard– all the better.

    Good luck!

  35. Observer*

    One thing that you should look at if you have any say in purchasing decisions is buying tech that’s epeat rated. For equipment that’s not relevant to, but that tends to use a lot of energy, try to push toward stuff with a high SEER or energy efficiency rating.

    There may be other standards that are relevant to equipment purchases, but these are the most common that I know of and are easy to find out about.

  36. snakefarm*

    I’ve been thinking a lot about this. I work in an agribusiness office and it’s kind of a touchy subject in this field, unfortunately. The CEO made a big deal about anyone bringing forward business ideas, but I’m not sure what that looks like in practice. I’m wondering how long you all think someone should be employed somewhere before suggesting changes- I’m only six months into my job, so I don’t think it would go over well yet. But there are a lot of things (small ones, like reducing paper, and big ones, like investing pensions differently) that we could do, and we are sort of an industry leader so I think we could set a good example for our clients. How long should I wait before bringing it up with my boss?

    1. Hlao-roo*

      I’m pretty risk-adverse, so personally I would wait about 2 years so I could establish a good reputation with my boss and get a better feel for the company. Other people will have different answers.

      I would suggest, whenever you feel ready, to start with the smallest/least-controversial change. If the suggestion is received well and the change is implemented, you can work your way towards bigger changes.

    2. Not So NewReader*

      I like the idea of recycling paper. That is pretty low stakes, others are probably saying the same thing, and it gives you something to get your foot in the door on this conversation. I think I might say that much now then sit back and watch what others say.

      The investments for pensions- if someone else says it with more seniority or more pull, then that would be an opportunity for me to chime in with “that’s a great idea”. This is a compromise where I am not the first one to say it but I don’t sit silent either.

      1. pancakes*

        Sometimes people have options for moving their own funds. I’ll link to something about this separately. The options aren’t just, try to get the whole company to move everyone’s funds or be patient.

  37. Fellow Tech Person*

    One school of thought that has helped me as someone in tech (and defense, on top of that) is Effective Altruism. Its the idea that you can do more good by working a high paying job and donating the surplus to causes you care about (like environmental organizations) than you can by taking a lower paying job in a more ‘altruistic’ field.

    A great book is ‘The Most Good You Can Do”. It helped me reframe that my job itself might not be how I help change the world, but the way I spend the money I am able to obtain doing it can. And also the money will potentially do more than what I could do as an individual volunteering/advocating for change.

    1. pancakes*

      I’d heard this phrase before but am not very familiar with it. It seems maybe not good in terms of supporting the status quo by way of supporting institutions that bandage it rather than trying to re-structure it, if that makes sense. An analogy might be that donating money to legal aid groups is good but doesn’t directly and in itself address things like unethical behavior by prosecutors, etc. I’ll link to an interesting critique I found.

  38. elizelizeliz*

    I have a few thoughts, some of which have been listed above:
    1) Does your company do matching donations? If not, can you push for them to do that? That will mean that not only will each donation you make for environmental purposes go twice as far, but that you are effectively redistributing a chunk of your company’s $$$ to various organizations for all your colleagues.
    2) Figure out how your skilled labor can specifically benefit orgs, rather than just generic volunteering. Sonia Sotomayor talked about this in her memoir and it really impacted me–how do we use our unique and honed professional skills/credentials in our communities, rather than just during our day jobs and then doing something generic when we volunteer.
    3) Figure out where your money is, and your company’s money, and advocate there. What investments do you have, if any? What work is being done by shareholders there to press those companies for real change? There is so little we can do as individuals with our own consumption, but a lot more that companies can do.
    4) What is your company doing more big picture in terms of carbon offset, environmental impact in neighborhoods (i think this is different with big tech as opposed to like a 30 person startup but it is really not my industry so i trust that you know more)? What are local environmental justice groups asking for and working on–and are they targeting anything that would impact/be impacted by your company? Collaborating there might be helpful as well. Your company might have access to power their org doesn’t.

  39. A Pound of Obscure*

    I would say you’re doing more than the average person already, and always always remember to “tend your own garden.” Reflect on your own assumptions and lifestyle constantly. I’ve tried to do this, too. Do I really need that new purse or pair of running shoes? Can I make my footprint smaller? And most of all — be WARY of the inherent hypocrisy of people who have great influence and reach. I’m looking at you, celebrities — yeah, you, the ones who fly on private jets to awards ceremonies to lecture viewers about how it’s up to them to save the planet.

    1. acallidryas*

      I really think that expecting perfection and focusing entirely on personal action moves the accountability from where it needs to be (major businesses and government policies that subsidize things that harm the environment and actually limit pro environment choices) and puts it on individuals where there’s relatively little that can be done. We went through a major experiment where we basically closed down for a year and air travel dropped drastically and emissions fell by…. 6%. And immediately rebounded.

      Yes, we should look at what we can do individually because it is good practice and people will have to change their activities. But thinking through how to impact many people at once (agency or business policy) and how to effect political change are going to be drastically more impactful.

  40. Hats Are Great*

    My area has a “climate chamber of commerce,” that started as an offshoot of Citizen’s Climate Lobby and it’s basically people like you, who have regular everyday jobs but want to lobby for environmental causes. Basically they get together and they share resources and engage in advocacy, both within their companies (“big impacts with minimum inputs”) and in the local community. If a nearby town is having a meeting on a new development project, the local Chamber of Commerce is going to be there advocating for the business community. But the local CLIMATE Chamber of Commerce is ALSO going to be there, advocating for environmental causes from a business POV. (Like, “okay, we understand why you need this much parking, but here’s what permeable pavers would cost and here’s how much they would save the town by reducing stormwater runoff and severe weather flooding.”) Over time, local businesses that belong to the “real” chamber have also joined the “climate” chamber as official members — starting with things like bike shops and local coffee shops, but it’s big enough and active enough that “mainstream” businesses are taking notice and joining or at least sending representatives.

    It also turns out that while people are kind of like, “Oh, that’s nice, this local restaurant belongs to the Chamber of Commerce and donates some money to local causes,” people are like, “HELL YEAH this local restaurant belongs to the Climate Chamber, I’m going to tell all my friends to eat here!” It’s become relatively powerful advertising for local businesses, especially among local HS students and young parents.

    Our “climate chamber” was really active in lobbying state government last year when it was passing an energy bill to increase renewables and reduce coal. The actual CoC was pretty pro-coal, but the climate chamber was there with the same slick presentations, facts and figures, and hundreds of small businesses that supported the renewables effort, which passed.

    1. bookworm*

      Oh man yes, if your org is part of any big industry associations, getting them to weigh in supportively of climate policies (and organize some others to as well) in those spaces is hugely, HUGELY helpful. Trade associations are the lowest common denominator of their members’ opinions, and they are often really powerful in legislative debates. Getting them to even be neutral rather than opposing climate policies can 100% make the difference about something passing or not.

    2. LW*

      That is absolutely brilliant – I don’t suppose you have a link to this? I’d be interested in knowing how one of these are founded! Thank you!

  41. danmei kid*

    Things like installing lights in conference rooms on timers so they shut off when no one is in there & using recycled materials are really basic steps. Looking at your carbon footprint by figuring out, for example, if you ship products or materials on a regular basis, what sorts of things can be batched and create fewer shipments? This is a cost-savings initiative as well as a carbon reduction one.

    Sometimes showing the company how these measures can save $$ will go a long way to influencing decisions around how to make an environmentally friendly workspace/processes overall.

  42. Zoe Karvounopsina*

    Very timely: the building I work in currently has an energy efficiency rating of G (lowest possible) and I was wondering whether I could/should ask why, and what we were doing to improve it.

  43. Beebee*

    Someone at my last employer was very into recycling/environmental causes and I learned a lot from her. She set up compost bins in the washroom for the paper towels (though you also have the option of using reusable ones that get washed if that’s possible) and was great at teaching others how recycling actually worked. She also taught me a lot about wishcycling and how it’s better to just throw something out if I wasn’t sure.

    You could also encourage your employer to go as zero waste as possible with things like technology upgrades. When they are done with computers, is there somewhere they can donate them? I can guarantee local universities, colleges, high schools might like them. Render resources for tech companies are also a huge environmental hit because of the power required to have them run. Depending on your job, could cloud storage or render resources be made more efficient? Could you bring in local environmental activists or sustainable designers to talk to people about ways they as individuals could help, or even just to educate them about things like zero waste and recycling?

    It sounds like you’re already doing a great job btw!

  44. irene adler*

    This is commendable!

    Would like to suggest:
    -Make things easy for folks to do the right thing. Locate receptacles where they will be used, straightforward instructions (post websites for carpooling or for travel sites that stress lowered carbon output, “Help yourself to the scratch paper”), etc.
    -Make sure there’s adequate follow through (receptacles are emptied promptly and contents are delivered to recycling facility, websites info kept updated, etc.).

    As an example: We had a temp who advocated for recycling. We liked the idea. So instead of tossing empty plastic pipette boxes, he had us give them to him (easy!). Only he hadn’t set up where to recycle these things. When he left, we were stuck with cabinets full of all the empty plastic pipette boxes. Which was a mighty chore trotting these things out to the dumpster.

  45. Beth*

    One small area I’ve been able to push successfully has been making sure our IT equipment is recycled as effectively as I can manage in our part of the world — either by having an outside company come in and pick up our used IT stuff (including phones, batteries, toner cartridges, peripherals, etc.), or by taking it there myself. I let everyone know when an e-recycling run is going to happen, and encourage them to bring in anything from home that they want to discard.

    I’ve bundled this in with the requirement at work for secure disposal of hard drives and laptops, so it’s regarded as a benefit or at least a convenience by most of the people in my firm. I’ve also done hard drive wiping for people’s personal computers as part of a recycling run.

  46. Dragonfly7*

    Thing I wish current job did: employer matching of my donations to organizations that are fighting for environmental justice.
    Thing New Job does: charging stations for electric vehicles in the parking garage. Dozens of them. (As an apartment renter, I wouldn’t otherwise have a convenient place to charge if I wanted an electric vehicle.)

    Other idea I haven’t seen today: altering dress codes to allow for cooler, likely less formal clothing so building temperatures can be adjusted upward a couple of degrees. Could be an interesting project to test out.

  47. Beboots*

    I work for a (non-US) national park and ironically enough there’s now a push to green our operations! (Usual government bureaucratic inefficiencies apply). We’ve had some good training lately. One thing we’ve been asked to think about, in terms of finances, is not only the purchase of new items and how to dispose of the old ones, but also the end of life of the product we’re purchasing (thinking particularly of electronics). Thinking more about paying to repair things (electronics, uniforms) instead of purchasing new ones, even though that’s historically been far easier to get approval for. We also have a large town site and our work buildings are about five to fifteen minutes drive apart, so we’ve had management support for cycling between the buildings instead of driving – it did involve the purchase of some bicycles, and also an understanding from management that there would be a bit longer travel time between these places (like 10 or 15 minutes instead of five) and that’s okay. Folks who work on trails or grounds that would normally have driven ATVs or golf carts, some of them now have eBikes with a cargo trailer and many said that that works well for them! Quieter, too – allows them to do their job without bothering wildlife or visitors as much. Again, not all of these solutions work for everyone and we still do have the old options, but the more people who can turn to greener options, the better. However, it does require management buy-in in terms of staff time (taking slightly longer to get places for instance) and financial resource allocation, as well as deeper considerations for purchasing (which is already an onerous, paperwork-heavy process). Greening does fit with our overall mission and mandate. It was a priority that had to be set from the top down… but it also requires buy-in at the supervisors and managers at site level, to think of creative ways to choose different options.

    1. LW*

      Cool! Thank you for this, it’s interesting to hear from someone in a completely different field. Also I’m glad that the push is happening – even if it is has all the hallmarks of bureaucratic inefficiencies. :)

  48. Nursebymarriage*

    I’ve found that starting change on something YOU can facilitate is easier than asking the company (i.e. Linda in HR that already has too much on her plate or whatever) to start up anything.
    My specific (small) contribution to a previous employer was simply me saying “hey, if you buy a blue recycle can for the lunch room, I will take care of recycling all of the aluminum cans.” This was an employer who wasn’t recycling at all, and while I couldn’t singlehandedly take on hauling out all forms of recycle, it was easy enough for me to throw a bag of cans in my car at the end of the week. (And since aluminum is one of the most fully recycled materials it made sense to start there.)
    It was no skin off their nose to let a blue bin sit in the lunchroom because they didn’t have to handle the details. I did it for a few years until I left and it is my understanding that they do have full recycling available now.
    Is it going to singlehandedly change the climate? No. But it is what I could do without trying to move the whole barge.

    tldr: Ask permission to do something small that YOU can take the reins on rather than getting your company to do the work. They are more likely to say yes if it isn’t any extra effort.

    1. LW*

      Yes to this – in my experience people are welcoming to suggestions that involve you taking on the work that you’re suggesting, which is entirely fair. And it’s always a first, step, too! Thank you for your reply!

  49. GoldenHandcuffs*

    At my company (a very large manufacturing company) and in my department specifically (marketing), we get and have made a lot of swag. I noticed how much when a co-worker was cleaning out her desk. We took all the stuff she didn’t want and put it in the break room and it was gone almost immediately. This inspired me to create the Swag Swap. I collected company branded items from all over the company and from coworkers who no longer wanted it and then we had an event where people could come “shop” and get some company branded items. We limited it to two items per person and we also pulled out the “cool” stuff that would have been snagged immediately and did a raffle for all those items. It was a resounding success and we redistributed almost everything. Those things that we couldn’t, we recycled as much as possible. In the case of old calendars, we donated them to our onsite daycare and the kids loved them. We haven’t been able to do a second one because of COVID but plan to in the future, this time with an “admission charge” of a food donation for our local food bank. We’re also working within our marketing department to try and be more mindful of our swag purchasing in general – to order less items to start or order higher quality items that are less fast fashion/cheaply made so that they last longer.

    1. Not that kind of doctor*

      Coordinate with the people at your company who order swag and products for conferences, launches, etc. Encourage them to find (or help them find) more eco-friendly products. For example, instead of polo shirts made from (essentially) plastic, look for more natural fibers. Order name-badge holders that are compostable instead of plastic, and have a way for event attendees to return them at the end. Better yet, make the badges out of stiff tagboard with a hole for the lanyard. Also, give people options of what they want for swag! Instead of ordering, say, baseball hats for everyone (including those who will never wear them), offer people a choice of swag ahead of time so they can pick what they will actually use, and you can order accordingly

      For the day-to-day: Does your company have a cafeteria? What do they do with the uneaten food at the end of the day? Can they donate it to homeless shelters? Compost it?

      1. LW*

        Ouuupph the tech industry and its mountains of swag – brrr! I’m taken back to so many t-shirts that I had no idea what to do with. Your suggestion is fantastic, thank you!

  50. MagnusArchivist*

    Especially if you work in tech, consider your records management/retention policies and digital storage practices! The tl/dr is that using up less digital storage and resources will reduce your company’s energy consumption, but of course systems are complicated and everyone’s infrastructure is different. This is something that those of us in libraries and archives are starting to think about, since we’re (in theory) keeping things forever and want to not destroy the environment while we do it. Links in a reply!

    1. MagnusArchivist*

      These are all technically about libraries and archives, but I’m sure you can extrapolate some themes that could help with most businesses that have digital storage.

      blog post series from the point of view of an academic library: https://saaers.wordpress.com/2020/10/06/estimating-energy-use-for-digital-preservation-part-i/

      Recent piece that’s more of an overview of digital preservation practices + environmental cost:

      Harvard report on environmentally sustainable digital preservation:

  51. AceyAceyAcey*

    Lots of companies have a climate committee (and sometimes also a climate committee too — one like global warming, and one like how people feel and DEI initiatives), though how effective and empowered it is can be variable.

  52. Stop The Printers*

    My organization reduced the number of printers from 10 a floor to 1 a floor three years ago. It was a hard adjustment at the time for many people who were used to printing EVERYTHING, but eventually people got used to it. Just today, they announced that each printer is enabled for secure printing now which means you must put in a PIN number at the printer to get your printer to print your job and your PIN charges back to your business unit for the paper and ink. I love this! It’s going to significantly cut down on paper usage. For us they said 1.2 million reams of paper a year!

  53. sarah*

    Advocate for incentives for employees who do not drive to the office. See if the company will subsidize transit or bike share passes. I worked at a place once where everyone who commuted not alone in a car for ten days in a month was entered into a raffle to win a prize.

    As someone who works in city government I’ll also add: Be vocally in favor as a local business of your city adding bicycle, pedestrian, and transit infrastructure in your neighborhood. I’ve seen so many active transportation projects get derailed because one business put up a stink about losing a parking space.

    1. Not that kind of doctor*

      Good point about infrastructure. To that end, also check whether your office has usable, secure bike racks or a bike cage in a non-sketchy area (i.e., not in a dark, scary corner of the parking garage). If the office is just a little too far from a transit station, see if you can arrange a shuttle in the mornings and afternoons.

  54. This-is-a-name-I-guess*

    If you’re in tech, investigate any links to Crypto and strongly advocate for divestment in any crypto or crypto-adjacent firms.

    The environmental and human costs to the blockchain are astronomical. There’s so much hype and no one in the mainstream is really paying attention (all bought off by Crypto lobbyists), so lots of reputable and intelligent people aren’t aware of how bad crypto is for the world.

    1) Blockchain is a failed technology project that’s not being used a speculative gambling vehicle without regulation. Millions of poor people are losing their entire life savings to fund the cashing out of high-wealth individuals in a late-stage Ponzi scheme. It’s truly predatory and terrible for people.

    2) Blockchain wastes so much energy that it has completely offset all renewable energy investments into the American grid. I cannot stress more how wasteful cryptocurrencies are. And all that energy is used for GAMBLING.

    1. Mill Miker*

      I was debating whether to bring up crypto myself. Even if you want to buy into the hype, you can look at things like the big crypto mining group that was recently selling all of it’s used graphics cards. They had piles and piles of the things, all worked well beyond their designed lifespan. We’re having shortages of all the materials in those cards, and they were selling them off because they were being replaced with new ones.
      There’s lots of talk of plans to make changes to get the environmental impact down, but not much in the way of noticeable results.

      1. This-is-a-name-I-guess*

        If OP works in tech or finance, it’s a very relevant question. Less so for other businesses, I think.

  55. Alexis Rosay*

    – Advocate for vegetarian or vegan food to be served at work, whether at the corporate cafeteria or work events.
    – Advocate for bike facilities at work to encourage bike commuting. Is there a free, safe place for people to store bikes while working?
    – Advocate for your company to charge for their parking garages and provide company-paid transit passes. This is the best way to discourage people from driving to work alone.

    1. I'm just here for the cats!*

      I don’t think the vegan/vegetarian thing should be forced on people but it should be more available if that’s an option (not all businesses have cafeteria and most of my jobs had very few work events with food).

      I don’t think the parking thing would work. Paying to go to work sucks. Maybe a few people will change their ways, but there are so many other factors that go in to whether someone drives or not. For example:

      If you live in a cold weather area it’s not feasible to walk or bike all the time.
      It could come across as ableist. There are plenty of people who need to drive because they cannot physically walk to work. Why should someone who physically cannot walk/bike have to pay to park when their coworkers don’t have to.
      So many areas of the country (US) are not pedestrian friendly. Maybe in certain areas like the downtown where there are more businesses, but when you get into suburbs and or residential areas there are not safe places to bike or walk.
      If you have kids it’s going to be more difficult or even impossible to drop them off at daycare/ school if you walk or bike than if you drive.

      I do like your ideas about areas to store bikes, especially if the company can provide something with a lock and subsidize transit passes.

      1. pancakes*

        Very few of us who would like to see more vegetarian and vegan options available want it “forced” on people.

        Similarly, very few of us who want more support for bicycling want people to feel obliged to do it if it doesn’t work for them and/or their family. I don’t know of anyone who advocates that.

      2. anontoday*

        Just putting my hand up as someone who has a disability that means I can’t drive (and therefore need to bike given the cost of cabs and the time cost of public transit in my city). The wide variation of access needs often seems to get lost in these conversations IME.

    2. yarnowl*

      I was going to suggest advocating for vegan/vegetarian meals as well. Animal products are terrible for the environment, and as a nice bonus vegan restaurants and caterers are, in my experience at least, more likely to have options for people who are gluten/soy intolerant, etc., so it can be much easier to make sure there is something for everyone.

  56. Brain the Brian*

    We successfully petitioned our office to provide K-cup recycling bins next to the office Keurigs a few years back. Nothing beyond that, though, unfortunately.

  57. H*

    If your employer has 401k/retirement matching, maybe advocate for an option for employees to choose a more “green” investment portfolio that doesn’t directly fund the fossil fuel industry?

  58. Seeking Second Childhood*

    Office supply& equipment discards can be huge especially during a move or an office reorganization.
    Re-use is key.
    One thing I’ve done at more than one job is coordinate donations — whatever old/unneeded items employees are ready to discard, they are asked to put them in a specific location. Other employees can snag items for their own teams or families.
    Then I make calls to local schools and post on FreeCycle and/or BuyNothing. During one office move, a local school administrator filled 2 SUVs with supplies. Teachers made lesson plan libraries and matter-of-factly offered binders & pens to students who needed them.
    Table’s cleared each weekend to avoid clutter buildup so not ALL stays out of the landfill, but it can be a huge proportion.

  59. Not So NewReader*

    Maybe this too simplistic?
    I am frugal. I am frugal at home and at work. I have had more than one boss comment “You never ask for anything!” Yep. I look around for items that can be reused or repurposed.

    Over the years, I have noticed that other people start re-using things the way I do. (But I have no problem copying their good ideas, either.) Bosses do notice. There are times where the boss might say, “I want to buy [expensive item].” I will point out that it’s more [item] than what we need and here’s why. Then I point out a smaller item or show how we can be fine with out the expensive item.

    In an odd turn about when I actually do want a more spendier item, usually it’s no issue to put in a request for that item. I just show how it’s more cost effective to have this is bigger/longer lasting/multi-use item. I had a boss who really, really enjoyed buying office supplies. It worked into too much clutter and added to confusion in some cases. I streamlined the supplies, such as one size of post note, not ten sizes. Then I created a bin for scrap paper, I used scrap paper when something larger than the one size post-it was needed. I went right through and did this with all the supplies. I set up designated areas for overage. For example the extra post-it pads were in ONE place, not ten different places. It made reordering a breeze. But this is my normal at home extra batteries all go into on particular box. At a glance, I know what I have and I know what I am low on or out of.

    I have seen first hand how one person can get a bunch of other people thinking about how they are using things and ordering things and perhaps make changes there.

  60. calvin blick*

    Obviously this wouldn’t be for everyone, but renewable energy is a big enough business now that you can find most kinds of jobs in that field. I know there are many renewable tech companies out there.

    The weird thing about working in renewable energy now is that the “true believers” are now outnumbers by people who don’t care that much one way or another–in fact, given how many finance people, engineers, and construction folks are involved it might lean slightly right in some ways.

  61. Bookworm*

    It probably depends on your field, how much power you have, etc. but some thoughts, plus after skimming through the comments:
    -Go as paperless as possible. Obviously there are some things that will need to be on paper for whatever reason, but encourage going paperless/recycling paper, etc.
    -Recycling/donating drives as an opportunity to clean out old office gear. Outdated tech, old cell phones that can be donated to (for example) domestic violence shelters and the like.
    -If you do swag, having reusable bags or water bottles (as just two examples) can also encourage people to go a little greener.
    -Encouraging any bike/walk/take public transportation to work days or offering bike racks/storage space or transit passes if that’s not already done.
    -Switching to energy efficient lighting/equipment as is feasible, if your building/office doesn’t do so already.

  62. Startup Survivor*

    Start a carbon accounting project. People optimize what they can measure. It doesn’t have to be everything right away, but you can focus on some high emissions areas that are relatively easy to track. For example, that might be business travel and compute resources. AWS has a simple tool to compute emissions; other compute can be estimated from time, location, and grid mix. Once you have some numbers, you can try to get emissions as a part of evaluation criteria for new projects/business decisions. Then you can talk about mitigation strategies. For model training, it might be time shifting, choosing different energy suppliers, or using more efficient modeling + inference. For business travel, it might be choosing a remote meeting rather than in person. Once you have carbon measurements, you can make it part of the conversation and celebrate reductions.

  63. systems change not climate change*

    Hi! I work in climate. If you work at a larger tech company, chances are that company has a lot of resources that can be directed towards systemic change. I would argue that a tech company trying to pivot to do environmental stuff directly is probably not that effective, vs using its resources to advocate for broader social change is probably the most powerful thing you can do for the environment.

    Obviously reducing your company’s own emissions comes first. Beyond that, I would strongly recommend you ask your company to avoid “carbon offsetting” and instead make contributions to systemic policy and technology change, for instance by using charitable dollars to support vetted policy advocacy groups or by contributing to scaling up novel carbon removal technologies that will be needed to restore our planet’s atmosphere and ecosystems – look up what Stripe and Microsoft are doing around carbon removal with the Frontier initiative, and propose that your company join. All of this is probably easiest if you band together with other employees and form an internal interest group that can advocate for these things.

  64. Woah*

    What about making sure that your personal time lives out those ethics? Does it have to be at work?

  65. Qwerty*

    Provide battery recyling bins. Most people toss their AA batteries in the trash from computer mouse or TV remotes and don’t have knowledge/access to proper battery disposal. One company I was at had a collection drum set up and employees were allowed to bring in batteries from home. Its a low effort for the company – I think ours was emptied once a year.

    1. I've Escaped Cubicle Land*

      This is something I feel bad for doing but I never know where to take the dead batteries (at home I try to only use rechargeable) The hazardous waste facility is never open when I am off work. So I end up with a small pile that I get tired of setting on a counter until I end up pitching them.

  66. I've Escaped Cubicle Land*

    When the government agency I work for switched to WFH during the pandemic we started killing a significantly smaller portion of the rainforest. Things that were printed out, handed to an agent, and then later scanned back into our archives all became PDFs. While we were still in office we requested recycle bins for the break rooms. Prior site had them, new site didn’t. Several people collected and took home the recyclables. New site was just down the street from the bus terminal so that was a plus. Just saw a news story that the bus fleet is getting replaced and at least half will be electric. People who cycled to work (town had revamped several roads to be more bike friendly) requested a bike stand to lock them up at. Big wigs couldn’t make that happened but did allow people to park bikes in the office hallways. (secured building) We also had the kind of lights that were motion activated so they would shut off in empty parts of the office. Which was great unless you were working late and tended to sit still. Places that have standardized start/end times can encourage ride shares and even set up formal or informal carpools. There was donated coffee cups/silverware/plates in the break room to reduce single use items. I tended to quietly lead by example. Like I packed my lunch in reusable containers every day, I composted, used the backs of paper for scratch paper instead of memo paper. The girl in charge of the break room coffee started giving me the grounds for my compost pile. She was a big recycler and I’ve seen her literally go dig something out of the trash if someone didn’t put a bottle in the recycle bin. 1 area tried having all the over head lights off to reduce glare/eyestrain/energy use (our cubbies had lights under a shelf so those that wanted light could still see adequately) A few people (obniouxly not even in that department) complained. Some big wig walked thru and said it felt like that department was napping after lunch so that ended.

  67. bookworm*

    Resist the urge (and help your company to resist it) to want to fund and lead a fancy new initiative, and instead get connected with and provide long-term resources to the folks on the ground doing the work (especially smaller community-based environmental justice groups that have a really hard time competing for resources with some of the big greens). I think the temptation to want to build a new shiny thing (bonus if it happens to involve whatever kind of tech you make being a solution!) can be especially strong in the tech sector, which tends to have a mindset around “industry disruption.” There are exceptions, but in general, what is needed to make headway on environmental policy isn’t some new technology, but boring stuff we’ve known about forever, like building political power and political will. Both of these things involve having lots of conversations with people for a long time before there’s much to show for it.

  68. Erica*

    A couple other concrete, cheap, achievable, if small, things you can advocate for your company to do that I don’t think I saw listed in the comments yet:
    – reduced lighting — on hot days my employer turns off overhead lights (while maintaining lights in hallways/bathrooms/stairwells for safety reasons) . Saves probably minor amounts of energy compared to the computers etc but every bit helps, and also makes for a calming environment
    -use way less AC — this is also a gender equity issue! Ideal temp for mixed gender workplace productivity is a balmy 75F https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0216362

  69. Treehugger*

    The sad truth is that individual choices will not impact wider climate change. By all means, continue to make green choices; those are good things in and of themselves.
    But the best thing you can do is ensure your company is only donating to green candidates. Divest any company-held stock from oil and gas companies. Use your tech platform to advocate for change.

  70. Green great dragon*

    Bike/season ticket loans, if not outright subsidies. If your work provides free/subsidised parking, ask they offer the equivalent subsidy to those using other means of transport. I’d love to say stop subsidising driving, but that won’t make you popular.
    If they overheat in the winter, and overcool in the summer, try to make them stop.
    Install recycling bins. Don’t provide a non-recycling bin at every desk, make it so people have to stand up to put trash in the non-recycling bit. They will be irritated for a month, and after a year anything else will seem weird.
    Will the company try to reset whatever your local wasteful habits are? Do meeting hosts print out a set of the papers for everyone, even though most people are reading them off their laptops? Does the last person out switch off the lights?
    Stop people having signatures that say in large text:



    Take care of the environment and only print when you need to.

    It may have helped at first, but I am 100% certain that these days the waste caused by printing out a multiple copies of these signatures in a chain of emails far exceeds the amount saved by slightly fewer emails being printed.

  71. Buttercup*

    My mom was kind of in this boat, and she’s managed to work sustainability into her job description in multiple workplaces now! She works in purchasing, so she has a bit more input than most into what kinds of products are used/available at her workplace, and the sourcing of said products, but she also worked it into anything she had purview over before it was part of her job description, too. Anything she had decision-making power over, she’d choose the most sustainable option; if she could influence what options were available, she’d get at least one more sustainable option in the running and advocate for it based on business needs to get whoever was making the choice on board. The most important thing she did was getting an executive on board with what she was trying to do – having their support made it much easier to get things done/changed, and gave her a lot of the support she needed in getting sustainability explicitly added to her job description. So, influence what you can, and do your best to get an executive on board with what you’re trying to do. If you know there’s an executive who might be more receptive to what you’re doing, see if you can talk to them and convince them to help make sustainability a bigger priority in your workplace!

  72. Erica*

    If you happen to be in the Bay Area, techequitycollaborative.org works to organize tech workers to advocate for better housing policy (which is also environmental policy.)

    And also: there are SO MANY grassroots environmental groups for which a relatively small monthly donation can make a big difference. I worked in environmental nonprofits for years before making a career change into tech. I now make 3x what I made in my nonprofit job, and I decided to “tithe” 5% after taxes to the groups I support most (for me that’s Sunrise Movement, 350.org, CalBike, and California YIMBY)

    I echo what everyone else has said that policy change is fundamental, and that kind of nerdy political advocacy usually doesn’t get the funding it needs.

  73. Allison*

    This is a very specific aspect of helping the environment, but you can encourage your office to help migrating birds by turning lights out during times of migration. To find out when those times are, google your city + Lights Out for birds. If every office did this, millions of birds can be saved!

    1. LW*

      What a nice, simple suggestion that potentially goes a long way, thank you. In my opinion we desperately need an international standard for tall buildings to do something about bird deaths. It’s just so sad and avoidable.
      Thank you!

  74. Erin*

    So I’d just like to share a resource – Dr. Ayana Elizabeth Johnson was a host of a (highly recommended) podcast where they talk about what you can do in your daily life to apply your skills to fighting climate change (podcast episode here: https://gimletmedia.com/shows/howtosaveaplanet/xjh53gn).

    She actually went on to host a TedTalk on this exact topic. Cannot recommend more!! https://www.ted.com/talks/ayana_elizabeth_johnson_how_to_find_joy_in_climate_action

  75. Kari*

    A huge one not to overlook is how your company’s 401k options are invested. My environmental focused nonprofit offered a 401k that by default invested heavily in the fossil fuel industry. Things like composting and turning out the lights are great, but the fact is a huge proportion of climate change is a direct result of a very small group of corporations, make sure you’re not unknowingly funding those through your 401k investments! (My company now has other options, a coworker did a huge amount of research on the topic and a group of us held a meeting with the CEO, HR, and our benefits broker)

  76. Really?*

    1). K cup coffee makers are incredibly wasteful. Get a machine that doesn’t use the K cups.

    2) Please stop fundraising from your coworkers. Especially if you are a manager. I am so tired of being solicited/pressured for everyone’s good cause.

    1. LW*

      I can promise you that my fundraising was most unobtrusive – a small, illustrated box in the kitchen asking for donations for wildlife during a horrible forest fire, for a single week. :)

      Also, I cannot understand how Kcups have not been banned yet.
      Thank you for your comment!

  77. Mewtwo*

    At the site level, see if you can implement a composting program if your city doesn’t have a municipal one. Keep the kitchen stocked with reusable dishes and utensils. If you buy catered meals for the office, choose local restaurants with vegan/vegetarian options and stay away from beef (and all meat if possible).

    My last job would also have a clothing swap twice a year where people would bring any clothing items they didn’t want anymore and hang them up on clothing racks set up in the conference room. The “shop” would be open for a week where people would pick and choose anything they wanted to take home. The rest of the stuff was donated to ThredUp. You can do this with things as well and donate the rest to Goodwill or a thrift shop.

    Systemically, not exactly sure what your options are given your industry, but where possible, partner with organizations that steward environmental justice and climate mitigation causes. Offer climate-friendly investment options for 401k (if relevant). Lobby for climate-friendly policies at the local and national levels.

    Also, see ways you can change your business model to be more sustainable. Implement circular economy concepts to your model. This is probably more relevant if you’re a manufacturer or industrial producer or something, but is there a way you can recycle the materials you use in production so you don’t have to source new materials as much? Implement take back programs, recycling etc. Don’t focus too much on maximizing production for the sale of producing more – I know this is impractical in our current economy but the hyper production driven by fast fashion and other “fast” production businesses is really bad for both the planet and human rights.

    1. Mewtwo*

      Also want to add, don’t forget to support marginalized communities in your efforts. If there are indigenous communities/tribes in your area you can support in some way – whether it is by supporting policies meant to protect them and their lands, consulting them in making business decisions that could impact them, including them in other key decision making and stakeholder processes as needed, etc.

  78. InterroDroid3000*

    You can raise awareness on what exactly the environmental impact of your work is. There is an amazing workshop called The Digital Collage which does exactly that in 3 hours. You can participate online and if you like it, propose it to your company, your team or to individual colleagues.


    I am not a part of this organisation, but I have friends that have done the workshop and have then become facilitators themselves. I cannot recommend it highly enough, and I feel it’s something that everyone should do.

  79. Spooky Doo*

    One thing you might have control over than can help the environment is making sure no one is crypto-mining using company software. That has a huge environmental impact (and energy suck), and you can make the case pretty easily.

  80. Nina_Bee*

    Cut down dairy and meat (or go vegan). It uses up a TON of water and land, and 70-80% of crops are grown for animal feed. Not work related per se but we can make a difference with limiting supply for environmentally damaging products and food we buy.

  81. Little Miss Sunshine*

    If your company has employee resource groups (aka affinity groups) you could reach out to the leadership of those groups about sponsoring events with an eco focus. There are many ways the objectives can intersect so this can be engaging content. If your company has any employee engagement initiatives you could find colleagues to help you advocate for action and policy changes.

    Other options could be working with your corporate philanthropy team (is they exist) to find events to raise awareness and possibly financial support though matching donations.

    Work with your facilities team to set up bee hives at your facility.

    1. Little Miss Sunshine*

      I would add that team volunteer events to do park clean-up in your office’s community is a great way to be a good corporate neighbor. Picking up trash along a riverbank, planting trees or flowers, helping to clean school playgrounds or local play parks, all contribute to people enjoying the environment and reducing waste, while also providing a great way to network and build relationships outside of the office. The key of course being that the event is purely voluntary.

  82. ZinniaOhZinnia*

    Hi friends! I’m the executive director of a small environmental nonprofit and I have a lot of ideas! I hope you’ll find them helpful :)

    1) Get connected with a local environmental nonprofit group (like mine!) we’re often tapped into bigger problems in your community *and* have great ways for you to get involved, from volunteering to do cleanups to offering your own skills up to support the nonprofit. For example, a friend of mine wanted to pitch in and while she wasn’t able to join us farming, she *was* able to donate some of her expertise as a bookkeeper and support some of the finance work I needed help with! See if your company will arrange for a volunteer day with that nonprofit- every little bit helps, and often companies will make a donation for the amount of work the volunteers do, so you’re supporting them financially and through your volunteerism- a double win for that group!

    2) Sponsorships: see if your company will help sponsor a nonprofit’s environmental program (ie, paying for all the yard waste bags for the year, or something like that). Often times, we need extra resources to cover costs like this that often are not included in grants.

    3) Check in with your city/town to see what their environmental departments are up to! We collaborate with them a lot, and they often know exactly what help they need; for example, volunteering to keep new street trees watered.

    Good luck, I love your enthusiasm and hope you find a way to support environmental work in your community!

Comments are closed.