Saturday, June 5, is World Environment Day, a United Nations initiative that encourages worldwide action to protect our environment. However, it doesn’t take an awareness day to remind ourselves of the importance of our relationship with the natural world – it’s a consideration we make every day.
Ahead of this year’s observance, WBA’s three environmental sustainability business resource groups (BRGs) in the U.S., UK and Asia hosted an internal discussion on what sustainability looks like across our different cultures. Team members also discussed some of the major environmental topics of our day: plastics and recycling, water sustainability, transportation, energy and biodiversity. Participants concluded that despite our geographic challenges and regulatory differences, every country was united in its passion to recycle and re-use more, increase our use of renewable energy and help protect our native species for a healthier planet.
The leads of each of these chapters shared the unique sustainability elements within their cultures and highlighted what each group is focused on this year:
Florence Newman, chair, Environmental Sustainability BRG, UK
“We have a big focus on supporting a ‘Sustainability in Schools’ project, which is a fundraising activity to educate children in deprived areas of the East Midlands, enabling them to participate in an environmental project such as building allotments.
“Alongside this work, we’re also enhancing our local biodiversity with beehives and allotments, collaborating with local charities to explore period poverty and engaging with our stores to explore the possibilities of recycling including pharmacy and inhaler depository schemes.”
Josie Kramer, vice chair, Environmental Sustainability BRG, U.S.
“We have ongoing collaboration with the UK and Asia teams, CSR, other BRGs, the Village of Deerfield, various sustainability commissions and other industry leaders – all with a focus on the environment and always looking for opportunities for member networking nationally and internationally to grow reach and share knowledge.”
Tony Chu, chair, Environmental Sustainability BRG, Asia
“I believe that our biggest goal for the year ahead is going to be making sure we learn, share and exchange green ideas globally, as well as collaborate with our UK and U.S. team members. As the newest BRG chapter, we’re really excited to learn from our global colleagues and help further our joint mission of doing everything we can to preserve this planet for future generations.”