Have you already given up on your New Year’s resolution? You’re not alone.
Four out of five people abandon their resolution. Many of us don’t even make it through January, and sky-high expectations are often to blame. So this year, we’re doing something different at Bullfrog Power. We chose sustainable resolutions for our office that are as achievable as they are impactful, and we’re encouraging you to do the same!
These are our sustainable resolutions for 2020:
Plant 10 trees per person
Forests sequester carbon, improve soil and water quality, and provide habitat for wildlife—not bad for a low-tech solution. This year, Bullfrog will plant at least 10 trees per team member. We’re looking forward to getting our hands dirty to keep Earth clean!
Eat low-impact lunches
Lunchtime may be the best part of the workday, but it can also have a big environmental footprint—agriculture represents about a third of global greenhouse gas emissions. We’re implementing a low-impact lunch challenge to encourage the Bullfrog team to eat more sustainably. We’ll award points for these green habits:
- Going vegetarian or vegan: It’s no secret that avoiding meat and other animal products is a great way to reduce your emissions. The carbon footprint of a kilogram of beef is equivalent to driving 176 kilometers, while a kilogram of lentils is equivalent to only 6 kilometers! Many of our coworkers are already vegetarian or vegan, and the rest of us will be encouraged to eat a plant-based lunch.
- Packing a zero-waste meal: Single-use plastic may be convenient, but it’s wreaking havoc on the environment. We’re encouraging staff to buy ingredients in bulk when they cook at home and to avoid plastic or Styrofoam takeout containers.
- Avoiding food waste: If there’s anything worse than a carbon intensive meal, it’s one that no one eats. Food waste is responsible for around 8% of human-caused greenhouse gas emissions, in part because of the methane it releases when it decomposes in landfill. Our team is encouraged to bring leftovers for lunch to prevent this. When we do have office food waste, we compost it to reduce methane emissions.
Clean up our commutes
Most bullfroggers walk, bike, or take public transit to work, but some of us have to drive between our Toronto and Oakville offices. To cut our transport-related emissions, we’re going to carpool whenever possible and bullfrogpower our inter-office trips with green fuel. Employees who go the extra mile to cut carbon out of their commute will even have the chance to win rewards.
Reduce packaging waste
We try to cut down on office waste, but we can always do better. In 2020, we’ll switch to packaging-free or refillable soaps, and we’ll provide reusable containers for the team to bring to their favourite lunch spots. (Yes, we’ve gotten weird looks before. But now our favourite pasta place fills up our reusable containers without batting an eye! The staff has even been recommending that other customers do it too—it doesn’t take much to define a new normal.)
We’ll also switch to recycled or reusable paper towels, as some of the fibre in standard paper towels comes from the Canadian boreal forest. Canada’s managed boreal forest, 54% of the nation’s total boreal forest area, locks away about 28 billion tonnes of carbon—the equivalent of the yearly carbon emissions from 22 billion cars or 26 thousand coal-fired power plants. It’s critical to keep our boreal forest intact and avoid releasing its carbon into the atmosphere.
Engage our community
Unsurprisingly, we have a bigger impact when we work together. We encourage everyone, whether a single person or an entire company, to make their own resolutions and help one another stick to them! We’re proud of Muskoka Roastery for resolving to significantly reduce the waste used in their office, public showroom, and production facility by finding compostable, recyclable, and reusable solutions.
We’re also loving Diva International Inc.‘s resolutions for 2020—they’re going to organize a carpool channel and create a paper policy that will help them conserve paper where possible and ensure that the paper they do use is recycled and FSC-certified. They’re also going to plant an herb garden for the Diva head office and for participating staff to take home. They noted that in Canada, particularly in the winter, most produce travels at least 2,500 kilometers. By growing their own food, they can reduce the environmental impact of that transportation.
Once you share your goals, you’ll be surprised to learn how many people will join you in your efforts. Check out what happened when Hippie Snacks posted their resolutions—we ended up planning a shoreline cleanup together!
So what’s your resolution?
Every bit of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere counts. Every bit of waste counts. And that means that every single thing we do, no matter how big or small, counts. So what’s your sustainable resolution? Screenshot our list below, check off what you’d like to accomplish, and share it on social media. We would love to see what you’re doing for the planet, so don’t forget to tag us @bullfrogpower and use #SustainableResolution!