World Environment Day: Connecting People to Nature

Connecting People to Nature is this year’s theme for World Environmental Day.  World Environment Day, celebrated each June 5th, was first designated by the United Nations General Assembly in 1972.  In 100+ countries, this day is the UN’s signature annual event for encouraging environmental stewardship. From your backyard to your favorite national park, nature is closer than you think. It’s time to get out and enjoy it.  Be a part of a world-wide event and share your photos and videos using #WorldEnvironmentDay or #WithNature.

Rocky Mtns naturewaterfall colorado nature

I frequently spend time outdoors to connect with nature.  A hike along the Chattahoochee River or a walk or swim in my neighborhood brings me closer to nature. My travels take me across this country and the globe –  to all the seven continents.

colorado rocky mtns

The Rocky Mountains: the majesty of nature

Recently, I witnessed the majesty of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado.  The colonies of aspens, magnificent elk, soaring golden eagles, playful prairie dogs and yes, even snakes, took my breath away.

No matter where my travels take me, I’m always amazed by nature’s grandeur, stunning beauty and the plethora of free environmental services such as clean water and oxygen to soil and pollination.  Today few organizations or individuals directly pay for the environmental services received from nature.  Compounding this free rider status, many of the related externalities (waste) of commerce based on extraction of natural resources are not accounted for on the cost ledger of our organizations. If we don’t start accounting and paying for these environmental services that we all enjoy – how will our quality of life be impacted?  What are the risks to our businesses?  At a minimum, might we all be ignoring an enormous bill that is already past due?

I would argue that the status quo is unsustainable.

As much as 80% of the environmental impact of a brand comes from the activities of our supply chains.  Businesses, NGOs and governments all have opportunities to collaborate with suppliers and partners to protect and preserve the environment.  Here are some questions to consider posing across your supply chain:

  • How can we mimic nature to improve our products and services?
  • Do you collaborate with your key suppliers to measure and set reduction targets against use of energy, water, waste and packaging?
  • What waste streams are generated along each point within your supply chain that should be reduced, eliminated or examined for potential sale or donation to other organizations?
  • Do individual departments set budgets for use of energy, water, office supply use?
  • Does your organization report greenhouse gas related emissions publicly?
  • Are water-related risks or deforestation-related risks publicly reported by your organization?
  • How do you trace the origin of ingredients, raw materials and supplies and manage the quality of your direct suppliers?
  • What benefits do or can your service or product deliver to society?
  • Do your brand managers tour and experience the entire supply chain of your business?
  • What new initiatives should you pursue to help connect with nature as a way to enhance the influence and growth or your brand, while protecting and preserving the environment?

This World Environment Day, I encourage you to take steps to connect your brand, organization and yourself more closely with nature.  If you are not routinely asking questions like those above to your suppliers, my question to you is, what do you have you to lose?

Pedaling to Reduce Your Carbon Footprint: Bike to Work Day

Friday, May 19th is Bike to Work day. It’s time to swap out your car keys or subway card for two wheels. Will you be a participant?

Why Should You Bike to Work?

There are many reasons including staying fit, saving money, or avoiding traffic delays.  The reason we at TreeZero like best is that it helps reduce your carbon footprint.  According to The League of American Bicyclists, 40% of all trips in the U.S. are less than two miles, making bicycling a feasible and fun way to get to work. biking to workWith increased interest in healthy, sustainable and economic transportation options, the number of bicycle commuters in the U.S. more than doubled since 2000.

You can do it
It sounds simple because it is. Whether you’re an experienced cyclist or a beginner, Bike to Work Day is your chance to give it a try. In fact, many of the largest U.S. cities will host Bike to Work Day events.  Your effort make a difference. Many people who participate in a Bike to Work Day promotion as first-time commuters become regular bike commuters. Everyone’s commute is improved when people ride a bike. 

Do it for fun
Leave the car at home and dust off the bike. Enjoy your commute for once. Notice the people, the buildings, the trees and much more.family biking together Then you don’t have to limit yourself to just bicycle commuting to work. Try riding your bike whenever possible. Ride with  your entire family. Maybe it’s a trip to a local farmer’s market or just exploring your city – just remember to have fun!

Southeast Green | TreeZero Partners with Wildlife Works to Protect Threatened Forests in Africa

Southeast Green | TreeZero Partners with Wildlife Works to Protect Threatened Forests in Africa

Partnership Expands Commitment to Innovation and Sustainability

A version of this article appeared in Southeast Green.

TreeZero, a sustainable paper company, has announced a partnership with Wildlife Works to support the preservation of threatened forests in Kenya and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Additionally, the partnership has enabled TreeZero to become carbon neutral and offset its product carbon emissions.

“Our partnership with Wildlife Works joins two organizations focused on innovative solutions to conserve the world’s biodiversity,” said Mike Nilan, CEO of TreeZero. “We care about the world we live in, and we have products made in a way that positively impacts the environment today – and for generations to come.”

TreeZero’s premium, multipurpose paper is made from sugarcane fiber waste that is 100 percent tree free. The company achieved carbon neutrality for its paper by offsetting the carbon emissions generated from producing and processing the sugarcane, and manufacturing, distributing and recycling the paper. TreeZero has retroactively purchased verified emission reductions (VERs), also known as carbon offsets, for every single ream of paper produced and sold since the inception of the company – and has made the commitment to continue to purchase carbon offsets for future sales.

Wildlife Works is the world’s leading REDD+ (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation) project development and management company. REDD+ is a climate change mitigation strategy envisioned by The United Nations to stop the deforestation responsible for pumping more than 7 billion tonnes of CO2 emissions into the atmosphere each year and accounting for 15 percent of global annual greenhouse gas emissions – more than the entire worldwide transportation sector.

“By creating value for standing trees through partnerships with organizations such as TreeZero, we’re able to fund our conservation efforts in Africa to protect forests and the wildlife that live in them,” said Mike Korchinsky, founder and president of Wildlife Works. “With TreeZero and other progressive corporations, we’re protecting 1.2 million acres of forests and preventing more than 5.4M tonnes of C02 emissions from being released each year for the 30-year life of the project. We’re also bringing sustainable development benefits to more than 200,000 local people who live in the forest area, in addition to protecting habitat for more than 300 species of wildlife.”

Approximately 300 million tons of paper is consumed worldwide each year.[1] According to the World Resources Institute, more than 80 percent of the Earth’s natural forests have been destroyed with 40 percent of deforestation driven by the paper industry.

“TreeZero is providing an alternative to paper production for those who want top quality paper and have a desire to move the needle on deforestation,’” said Nilan. “At the same time, we challenge others to go beyond conventional thinking to create solutions that further the circular economy.”

Nilan and Korchinsky are on the “Business for Sustainable Solutions” panel at The Rethinking Animals Summit in New York, May 6 and 7. They will discuss the TreeZero and Wildlife Works partnership and illustrate ways businesses can be profitable while protecting the environment and biodiversity.

TreeZero Partners with Wildlife Works to Protect Threatened Forests in Africa

TreeZero Partners with Wildlife Works to Protect Threatened Forests in Africa

Partnership Expands Commitment to Innovation and Sustainability

ATLANTA – May 1, 2017 – TreeZero, a sustainable paper company, has announced a partnership with Wildlife Works to support the preservation of threatened forests in Kenya and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Additionally, the partnership has enabled TreeZero to become carbon neutral and offset its product carbon emissions.

“Our partnership with Wildlife Works joins two organizations focused on innovative solutions to conserve the world’s biodiversity,” said Mike Nilan, CEO of TreeZero. “We care about the world we live in, and we have products made in a way that positively impacts the environment today – and for generations to come.”

TreeZero’s premium, multipurpose paper is made from sugarcane fiber waste that is 100 percent tree free. The company achieved carbon neutrality for its paper by offsetting the carbon emissions generated from producing and processing the sugarcane, and manufacturing, distributing and recycling the paper. TreeZero has retroactively purchased verified emission reductions (VERs), also known as carbon offsets, for every single ream of paper produced and sold since the inception of the company – and has made the commitment to continue to purchase carbon offsets for future sales.

Wildlife Works is the world’s leading REDD+ (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation) project development and management company. REDD+ is a climate change mitigation strategy envisioned by The United Nations to stop the deforestation responsible for pumping more than 7 billion tonnes of CO2 emissions into the atmosphere each year and accounting for 15 percent of global annual greenhouse gas emissions – more than the entire worldwide transportation sector.

“By creating value for standing trees through partnerships with organizations such as TreeZero, we’re able to fund our conservation efforts in Africa to protect forests and the wildlife that live in them,” said Mike Korchinsky, founder and president of Wildlife Works. “With TreeZero and other progressive corporations, we’re protecting 1.2 million acres of forests and preventing more than 5.4M tonnes of C02 emissions from being released each year for the 30-year life of the project. We’re also bringing sustainable development benefits to more than 200,000 local people who live in the forest area, in addition to protecting habitat for more than 300 species of wildlife.”

Approximately 300 million tons of paper is consumed worldwide each year.[1] According to the World Resources Institute, more than 80 percent of the Earth’s natural forests have been destroyed with 40 percent of deforestation driven by the paper industry.

“TreeZero is providing an alternative to paper production for those who want top quality paper and have a desire to move the needle on deforestation,’” said Nilan. “At the same time, we challenge others to go beyond conventional thinking to create solutions that further the circular economy.”

Nilan and Korchinsky are on the “Business for Sustainable Solutions” panel at The Rethinking Animals Summit in New York, May 6 and 7. They will discuss the TreeZero and Wildlife Works partnership and illustrate ways businesses can be profitable while protecting the environment and biodiversity.

About TreeZero

TreeZero is an Atlanta-based sustainable solutions company that markets, supplies and distributes environmentally responsible agro fiber paper products. TreeZero paper is the only premium 100 percent tree free, carbon neutral paper made from sugarcane waste fiber. It is completely recyclable within existing recycling systems and surpasses other recycled paper brands in Ricoh tests. TreeZero paper is available at office supply distributors such as Artlite, Essendant, Office Depot/Office Max®, Ricoh Canada, Staples®, Veritiv™ and W.B. Mason, online at Amazon and Walmart and in-store at FedEx® Office locations nationwide. For more information, visit www.treezero.com and connect with TreeZero on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. 

About Wildlife Works

Wildlife Works Carbon LLC is a unique private sector forest conservation company founded in 2009 aiming to make a massive contribution to reducing global emissions by protecting some of the most important and highly threatened tropical forests in the world. Wildlife Works is currently engaged in several developing country forest communities, managing their transition away from forest destruction and towards sustainable economic development. Wildlife Works uses the innovative market mechanism REDD+ to finance activities and to provide the financial incentives for those communities and governments to protect their forests. REDD+ places a value on the natural capital of standing forests as the key element in mitigating climate change and sells that value to willing corporate leaders and individuals who are committed to reducing the carbon footprint of their organizations. In addition to reducing emissions from avoiding deforestation, Wildlife Works REDD+ projects deliver unprecedented environmental and social benefits to seriously impoverished parts of the world that are in desperate need of change. 

Media Relations Contact

Ashley Biondich

FleishmanHillard (for TreeZero)

404-739-0141

ashley.biondich@fleishman.com

[1] http://www.thepaperlessproject.com/facts-about-paper-the-impact-of-consumption/

3 Things to Know About Our Partnership with Wildlife Works

We’ve been working hard since 2009 to make a positive impact on the world through innovation and sustainability. Because we want to keep driving progress, we’ve recently partnered with Wildlife Works to help preserve threatened forests. With the support of TreeZero and other sustainability-focused companies, Wildlife Works is:

  • Protecting 1.2 million acres of forest in Kenya and the Democratic Republic of the Congo
  • Preserving habitats for more than 300 wildlife species
  • Bringing sustainable development benefits to more than 200,000 locals

We are excited about this partnership and our goal is to share the benefits with you.

We’re Increasing the Sustainability of our Products

Through our partnership with Wildlife Works, our multipurpose paper is now carbon neutral. What does that mean? It means we’re cutting greenhouse gas emissions. We went back and purchased carbon offsets for every ream of paper distributed by TreeZero since the inception of the company. We’re committed to meeting the highest sustainability standards and will continue purchasing carbon offsets for future sales. 

We’re Helping the Environment

Saving the environment is no easy task and we understand people want to get involved. To continue moving the needle, our partnership with Wildlife Works is helping to provide training and employment opportunities to villagers near these forests. And by working together, Wildlife Works is helping to protect local wildlife, including elephants, giraffes and cheetahs.

 

 

We’re Advocating for Continued Change

It’s important to speak up and show the world you stand for something. We offer thanks to our customers – the thousands of companies and individuals who use TreeZero’s multipurpose paper every day. Together with Wildlife Works, we’ll continue to help preserve threatened forests and habitats.

This upcoming weekend, I’ll be at The Rethinking Animals Summit in New York speaking on the “Business for Sustainable Solutions” panel with Wildlife Works founder Mike Korchinsky. We’re sharing how businesses can be profitable while protecting the environment. We hope to inspire other businesses and more consumers to make sustainable choices – because every decision makes a difference.

Additional Resources