In honor of Eco18’s eight-year anniversary, we are taking a look back at the eighteen resolutions we adopted during our first year to see how far we have come (and where we need to make more progress) to become an even more sustainable, eco-friendly group! This mission is more important than ever, with the United Nations revealing that climate disasters are taking place weekly and as we learn more and more ways to become sustainable. But we’ve seen how when we come together, we can make a big difference! Even the youngest generations are revolutionizing how we talk about the environment. Check out where we are and what we plan to do next!
1. Walk, bike or take public transportation to work. No cars, no cabs. We are putting this into practice every day. The MTA in NYC, while it has its delays and annoyances, makes this goal easily accomplishable.
2. Bring in a healthy lunch from home at least once a week and partake in Meatless Mondays and/or non-processed food Wednesdays. We are bringing in lunch once a week, often more, and it is often meatless with very little processed foods. I also love trying out new recipes for Eco18!
3. Unplug laptop and cell phone chargers when they are not in use. We still are working on this one! It’s easy to forget what all is plugged in, but practice makes perfect.
4. No disposable plates or utensils in the office. This one is becoming easier and we only use plastic when nothing else is available, and so we rely on plastic less and less.
5. Power down all computers at the end of the day. We still need a lot of practice on this one. The worry is making sure that everyone saves everything on their desktop before leaving because if we unplug, we could lose the day’s work. We hope to form a stronger habit of turning off our computers and unplugging when we leave for the day.
6. Sponsor individual from KIVA. We love KIVA and we continue to be a sponsor. KIVA is a microfinance company that provides small loans to rural women in communities where opportunities are not as easy to come by. I love that it’s a hand-up and not a hand-out because it inspires empowerment and independence, and makes it easy to keep the cycle going by allowing you to re-invest in someone’s else dream when you get paid back! It’s great how virtually anyone can get involved and that it has proven to be a sustainable model.
7. Introduce some live plants into the office to increase oxygen flow. We have just moved our office to a larger space, so keep checking back with us because our live plants will be arriving soon!
8. Recycle our old technology/machines (computers, phones, printers, etc.) Yes, we do! Check out this guide by PureWow to answer all of your recycling questions in NYC!
9. Switch to travel coffee mugs + water bottles. The Bond Collective helps us out by providing coffee mugs and glass cups, and everyone on our team here brings in their own reusable water bottles!
10. Shut off lights in and around the office when not necessary and use natural lighting during the course of the day. Another yes! We are lucky enough to have big windows in our new space, and we use this to our full advantage.
11. Only print on clean paper if absolutely necessary, be sure to use the other side of printer paper. We were doing really well but began to get out of the habit as time went on. Now is a reminder to get back on track.
12. When we get goodies and giveaways from tradeshows, events, etc. share them in our re-gifting corner in the kitchen. One person’s trash is another person’s treasure! Always! People love our goodies!
13. Don’t buy notepads – take notes on the back of used paper. We’ve cut back on this by about 70%, so we still have a little ways to go.
14. Donate old business clothes. I’ve got a whole pile ready to go. I’ve donated to Dress for Success in the past and recently I’ve been looking into how I might start re-selling some of my older items on one of the plethora of apps they have now just for this purpose.
15. Recycle + reuse shipping materials. We do this all the time! Not only is it good for the environment, but it’s also cost-effective and efficient.
16. No opening windows when the A/C is on! NEVER!
17. Save coffee trays and return them to the coffee shop once we have a nice stack. We rarely need to make a coffee run, as our great office space at The Bond Collective provides coffee and mugs.
18. Plant a tree to represent Eco18’s growth and to remind ourselves of how much we appreciate nature! We got a little behind on this. Can you guess what’s next on our list? We’re going to plant eight trees!
It’s been a good year at Eco18. We have been able to work with three summer interns who love writing about the environment as much as we do. We have also moved offices and survived! And Eco18’s writers continue to write as much as they can as the climate crisis evolves.
Eco18 is important to me because it gives our team an opportunity to write on topics they are passionate about and bring attention to the environmental challenges facing our home planet. When I started Eco18 eight years ago, it was all about making small everyday changes, but today, the clock is ticking and we have to accelerate change and make our voices heard.
Our current administration is deaf and blind to the issues of global warming and climate change… greed and money supersede humanity and moral judgment. So, if we don’t all make a conscious effort to save our home planet, who will?
Two things we can do that will have an impact:
- Vote for people who take the issues seriously and have ideas and plans to address the problems.
- Make your $$$’s count. Use your purchasing power to buy from companies who have environmental policies in place.
And continue to do everyday things like saying no to plastic straws, using reusable bags, buying local, shopping organic and getting your kids involved…they are the hope for the future! Thank you for your readership and support over these past eight years. Let’s make year nine a great one.
If you’re interested in joining our collective of eco-writers, don’t hesitate to reach out. We would love to welcome even more into our environment-minded, creative community!
Eco18 Founder and Editor-in-Chief