Are You a Lorax or a Once-ler?
Contributing Author: Ashley Brown
A big Ment hello to all of you and thanks for checking in! First off, I would like to introduce another one of our talented interns, Ashley Brown who is a contributing author on this next post. Her job consists of all things Public Relations and as her first time on the blog, she gets to help me introduce our new monthly theme of “Going Green.”
Since it’s the month of St. Patty’s day and all things green, we figured why not make our monthly theme green! Embracing sustainable and green principles is not just a trend, but a lifestyle that is, rightfully, taking over. Let’s take a quick look at where this urge to be environmentally aware began. According to The American Center History of the Modern Environmental Movement in America,
The rise of the modern environmental movement in America can be traced to several widely publicized events in the 1960s and the 1970s. These events included concern over hydrogen bomb testing on Bikini Atoll, oil spills off of the coast of California, and the use of insecticides and other chemicals. In the 1960s, the pollution of the Great Lakes became a rallying point for environmentalism in the United States. The pollution of Lake Erie and its nearby waterways was so great that debris on the Cuyahoga River caught fire and created thousands of dollars of property damage. The so-called Lake Erie Fire became a media sensation and helped push environmentalism into the public consciousness. The idea of a waterway so polluted that it caught fire inspired the Randy Newman song “Burn On.” Lake Erie was so symbolic of environmental destruction that Dr. Seuss mentioned it by name in his environmental awareness book The Lorax.
Whether you are on the side of believing global warming is a thing or not, there’s no denying the effects our waste has on the natural world or in this case, the Lorax. (Cue the Dawn commercial with the cute little penguins or the video of the turtle getting a plastic straw pulled out of his nose). With all of this in mind, we did a little digging. Coffee is always on the brain here at Ment and a lot of waste is involved in our consumption. Did you know that 16 billion disposable coffee cups are used each year? We didn’t! So with that, we have invited our members to live the mug life and we challenge you to do the same. You will be surprised at how many coffee shops will fill up your favorite ban.do “But First Coffee” on-the-go mug if you just ask.
Sustainable coworking has become a popular trend in the more recent years and if a coworking space is not green, it is considered outdated. Why? Well because it is first off it is economically viable. Going green saves the green in your pocket, but more importantly, it is another way to unite the conscious individuals who collaborate in your space to reduce their carbon footprint and network while doing so. Large companies, or the Once-lers as referred to in Dr. Seuss’ book, are now looking at their awareness of this trend as a corporate social responsibility to show that they give back to the community. Past that, the people working in a green workspace tend to have better health and wellbeing.
If you or your company are looking to join us Loraxes, consider these few ways to incorporate eco-friendly initiatives in your office:
- Recycle: Studies show recycling participation increases if stations are more easily accessible, so distribute recycling bins throughout the workspace. We also use Land Shark shredding for our members to have the peace of mind knowing not only that they are recycling, but they are also depositing their confidential information into a safe bin to be disposed of properly.
- Reduce: Cut back on your paper consumption by scanning and emailing papers out. Your desk will thank you later. Along with this, try to reduce energy consumption by replacing standard light bulbs with compact fluorescent bulbs and turn the lights off when you leave a room.
- Share helpful reminders: Whether it’s placing a note by the light switch to remind people to turn them off or emailing out instructions on how to print double-sided, educate your office and make it easy for them to make greener choices.
As the Lorax once said to the Once-ler, “Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not.”
When I was a kid growing up in rural Indiana, everything was thrown away. There was no such thing as recycling. In fact, we would burn our trash in an empty 55 gallon barrel drum. I, accidentally, caught our field on fire one day. Oops! Then we progressed to having aluminum can crushers in our garages. We would fill up a trash bag with crushed aluminum and then haul it off to a recycling center for a few bucks. There was no such thing as curbside recycling. And paper? There was no such thing as electronic reports. Everything, I mean everything was printed and mailed! Because, obviously, there were no computers. So, yes, just in my lifetime there have been huge strides in the way of taking care of mother earth.
Wonderful! I’m proud to say our school recycles just about anything we can! My students are adamant about recycling….”Mrs. Goff, that can be recycled” Is what I hear A LOT!