Corporate Leadership is Focusing on Climate Change

In news that is, without a doubt, going to make millions of people around the globe happy, corporate leadership efforts and corporate social responsibility is taking a hard turn and beginning to focus on the environment and mitigating the damage done by climate change and global warming. As more and more scientists and civilians across the globe begin calling for real, substantial action to be taken on the growing threat of climate change, businesses are frequently seen as working against this drive. This is patently false and now, with the rise of environmentally-minded corporate leadership, businesses are going to be on the frontline of making sure the world is liveable for the future.corporate social responsibility and the environment

When you think about it, it makes sense that businesses are tackling the threat of climate change head on. A liveable earth is needed for the continuation of business and things such as water and energy directly affect all businesses across the globe, regardless of what they’re specializing in. Not only that, but businesses are in the perfect position for this sort of initiative and seeing as how going “green” is the hottest new buzzword, it makes sense that companies are realigning their priorities with those of their consumer-base.

Already, some major companies are taking impressive steps towards putting these plans into action. The Mars corporation has pledged to be Sustainable in a Generation by implementing plans that focus on water conservation, waste management, and the eventual elimination of fossil fuels by 2040. Microsoft is another company making strides in this field — they have established an internal carbon tax and are working to make the emission reduction targets understandable by not focusing on metric tons of CO2, but instead focusing on the dollars they cost. Along with Microsoft and Mars, companies like Siemens are also working to slash their carbon emissions and make environmental sustainability a central part of the company culture and mission. Is it too late for these efforts to have any real effect? This is something that remains to be seen. There are reports saying that we’ve already gone past the point of no return when it comes to the damage climate change will cause but regardless of the truth in that statement, it’s refreshing to see companies shoulder some of our shared responsibility to this earth we live on and begin to implement actions that could have a very real effect on our shared futures.

If you’d like to read more, the link is here.

Naming a Price In Green Building

The green building movement is in full swing, but how much are people willing to pay for it? A recent article in The Oregonian covers the trouble developers have knowing what a green feature is worth to a consumer, and what is being done to fix that.

Dave Pflieger

Naming a Price In Green Building

Some green features are readily apparent to anyone. A person will notice windows, doors or solar panels. But many features of green building are built deep into the fabric of the house. Ultra-efficient ventilation systems, green insulation and heat exchangers are not readily observable to the untrained eye, and oftentimes not to the trained eye either.

Developers are finding that some of their most green and energy efficient features are being overlooked by brokers and appraisers. As a result, there is very little clear data available on what eco-conscious consumers are willing to pay for green materials, technology and processes.

A non-profit out of Portland, Earth Advantage, is attempting to rectify the situation by educating real-estate professionals on how to spot green features and figure them into the price of the homes. The hope is that brokers and appraisers will take this information to consumers so that data will come in to see how much green building is worth.  Once those price points come in there will be room to push the practices out of their niche into the building community’s mainstream.

“A lot of this depends on the people who are out there on the front lines,” said Cathcart. “If you walk into a house and don’t know what questions to ask, things are going to be missed.”

Is Your Love for Coconut Hurting the Environment?

Dave Pflieger Coconuts Environment

The process of food cultivation and delivery altogether ranks as one of the leading causes of greenhouse gas emissions. Today, the craze over coconuts and all that they offer (milk, oils, water, meat) puts a great burden on the environment. From the cultivation, per se, to the transportation and commodification of coconuts a series of hazardous processes challenges the resilience of the planet.

As coconut is increasingly desired, farmers are forced to partake in monocultural farming, or restricting plots of land to growing one solitary crop. As part of this exploit, they use unnatural fertilizers to expedite growth and cut the number of diverse plant species that are indigenous to the biosphere in order to make room for the desired species. This reduces the flourishing diversity of an area, and reduces it to a perfunctory, monotonous farm.

Coconuts are well liked for their versatility. The oils are featured in cosmetics, the water is a favored source of hydration and replenishment, the meat is a tasty snack, and the milk is a culinary favorite and supports alternative diets for which animal products are not eaten. That being said, the wide use is responsible for its impact on the environment. The fruit often comes from foreign regions—tropical American and Asian areas—and its import requires a great deal of transportation. The Food and Agriculture Organization reported that Indonesia and the Philippines are leading producers of coconut (followed by India, Sri Lanka, and Brazil) whereas China, Malaysia, and the United States are among the leading importers.

One thing One Green Planet suggests is buying organic and fair trade certified products. Both ensure that the land was not exposed to unnatural chemical fertilizers or pesticides. The Fair Trade organization sees to it that fruits are grown safely, and that farmers are properly compensated for their labor. It’s a small step, but it’s one that needs to be taken in an age where so much risks environmental harm.

In 2015, Companies Address Climate Change through Corporate Sustainability

Eco-sustainability will likely matter more 2015 than anytime in past; this is the year the US’s biggest companies need to prove they are addressing climate change through sustainability, thanks to efforts of two presidents and the Pope.

Remember the green wave of 2007? Al Gore’s movie “An Inconvenient Truth” won an Academy Award and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change made news worldwide with evidence of burning fossil fuels and global warming.

Consumers are researching brands’ environmental information like no other time, leaving most companies scrambling to share their environmental story.

Many brands went too far in that direction, often making marketing claims that were basically greenwashing lackluster efforts. Companies started to color their logos green and put bears in their advertising. These marketing decisions slowed during the 2008 recession, which cut corporate spending on sustainability.

Heading into 2015, we will finally reach the tipping point where environmental sustainability gains a stronghold in global society.

President Barack Obama recently brokered a climate change agreement with Chinese President Xi Jinping. After more than 20 years of climate inaction, the deal could lead to a global agreement to reduce pollution among 195 member countries at this December’s United Nations climate change convention in Paris.

Pope Francis is also taking action on climate change. Francis’ predecessors spoke out in favor of climate action. The Vatican now plans to do more in 2015 by issuing an encyclical that urges all Catholics to take action on moral and scientific grounds.

 

Island Air and Special Olympics Hawaii

Island Air is a proud partner with the Special Olympics of Hawaii.  In November, the Special Olympics has their November Holiday Classic. The Special Olypmics of Hawaii welcomed over 1,000 athletes and coaches from throughout Hawaii to participate in the Holiday Classic at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam and MCBH, Kaneohe Bay. Typically, athletes train for their events from September – November and compete in area and regional competitions in October and November in preparation for the Holiday Classic. The event includes a  2 day Basketball tournament, Singles and Team Bowling competitions, and traditional and Doubles Bocce tournaments.