Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Taking climate change action to the workplace

Of late I have tried to reinvigorate my efforts and take further action on climate change – especially beyond this blog. The recent concern with Garnaut's proposed targets for cutting Australia's greenhouse gas emissions helped spark this.

I also think that after the first flush of concern and action around climate change that started two or three years ago, there is the danger of complacency setting in, or concern with the accelerating rate of warming turning into 'caught in the headlights' fear.

For these reasons, it is useful to remember what we're concerned about, renew a sense of responsibility, recommit to whatever steps previously made to cut our greenhouse emissions, and take further action. This includes taking action at work beyond chats in the tea room.

This morning at work, I organised a viewing of a DVD on the impact of climate change on poor communities in developing countries, including Australia's Pacific neighbours. The 15 minute DVD was from Make Poverty History, who are distributing it as part of their climate change campaign to highlight the disproportional impact of global warming on the poor of developing countries. They had also kindly provided pamphletes, posters, postcards, petitions and a host of other campaign material.

I was pleased with the positive reception – not just in the number of my colleagues who came (a big majority) but also in the short discussion we had after. A lot of my colleagues are already well versed in the issues around climate change and take their own personal action, but efforts to be more sustainable at work have been slower and a little more painful.

That is why I'm really heartened by some people saying they were inspired to act further, and a renewed interest amongst us in the organisation switching to GreenPower and exploring offsetting the carbon emissions for our various activies, including flights – including from my boss. We are a small organisation with a small budget, and there is only so much we can do. I could not have hoped for a better response.

I've volunteered to get information on carbon offsetting and switching to GreenPower, and having an energy efficiency audit done at work. More work to do, but good work.

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At October 10, 2008 7:53 pm, Blogger tanyaa said...

I heard about this tool from a fellow tree-hugger: Climate Counts is a nonprofit organization that ranks companies based on their environmental track record. It’s a very cool site – I’ve been playing around on it this morning and found out that some of my favorite companies are doing really well and others could use some improvement.
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At October 21, 2008 4:02 pm, Blogger djfoobarmatt said...

I realise this is a bit of a "twag" but I'm catching up on some RSS. No way would I be brave enough to do this at my workplace! Even though we are pretty keen recyclers and one guy even collects batteries for safe disposal: to be seen as preaching is like the worst sin in the world around here.


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