Cycling 4,500 miles across the USA, that’s the easy part. So what’s the hard part? How about doing it completely off the grid? For three months, adventurer and 1% for the Planet member Rob Greenfield will be showing and inspiring Americans how to live sustainably and decrease their environmental impact. He will be:
-using electricity generated by portable alternative energy devices
-creating near zero trash
-using water from natural sources
-eating locally produced organic and unpackaged foods
-composting all food waste
-shopping at businesses that are committed to creating a healthy planet
The adventure begins at the San Francisco Earth Day Celebration on April 20th and will take Rob through 19 states. Traveling mostly on ‘blue highways’, he will also be spending time in cities including Salt Lake City, Denver, Kansas City, St. Louis, Milwaukee, Chicago, Cleveland, Philadelphia, New York, Providence and Boston. The journey is scheduled to end on August 1st at the 1% for the Planet Headquarters in Waitsfield, Vermont. During the three month trip Rob will be raising $10,000 for 1% for the Planet non-profits, including Guitars in the Classroom and Below the Surface, as well as speaking with new businesses about joining the 1% for the Planet movement.
Along the way, Rob will be hosting zero waste events and bicycle rides, visiting environmental causes and businesses that practice corporate social responsibility, promoting sustainable products, working with community gardens and hosting do good giveaways via Facebook. The journey will be documented by professional cameraman, Brent Martin, and can be followed online at www.GreenfieldAdventures.org and www.facebook.com/GreenfieldAdventures.
Key ingredients of the adventure include sponsorships by Goal Zero, Drips Water, Kala Brand Music, PowerPot, neat-os, Dinkum Systems, Volontourism, and Bokashi Earth.
About Greenfield Adventures
Rob Greenfield is an adventurer at Greenfield Adventures, where his mission is to entertain, educate, inspire and give back through adventures and traveling. He has traveled to 25+ countries on six continents. He lives a sustainable life in San Diego, where he has started a community bike program and a community CFL bulb exchange and has hosted trash cleanups. He’s also the founder of The Greenfield Group, an environmentally active marketing company that uses five percent of its revenue for green projects. Rob is a 26-year-old native of Wisconsin and a graduate of University of Wisconsin – La Crosse in Biology and Aquatic Science.
Last week we hosted a Special Edition Power Plant event celebrating the incredible growth in the 1% for the Planet family north of the border.
By the Numbers:
In just a year we’ve added 23 new members, who will donate an additional $700,000 to environmental causes this year alone. That brings us to more than $5M in giving to date from our Canadian partners. Boom. There’s a lot to be excited about.
The evening featured presentations from movers and shakers in the Canadian sustainability world who highlighted ways that business can be a part of the solution to pressing environmental challenges in Canada.
The night was chock full of great conversation, connections and good times; we left inspired by the Canadian team, knowing this is a group that will create enormous positive change for the planet.
Thanks to all who made it possible, keep up the great work, and we’ll see you in town again soon!
And if you couldn’t make it, check out our speakers in action at these links!
Five days of torrential rain—with temperatures in the 60s—combined with a leaky tent that soaks you on night one, and just two pairs of sopping chammy to get you through… I doubt any of those components would make it on to your list of perfect conditions.
Nonetheless, after pushing for a week through malevolent storms, sopping roads and long, grinding hills, 1% for the Planet member Victoria Vox made it from Eureka to San Francisco undaunted last October. In fact, she recently said of her first Climate Ride “the sum was greater than its parts, and I can’t wait to be a part of that sum again!”
And she was true to her word.
Congratulations to Victoria, who got back on the bike and completed her SECOND Climate Ride, this time under more seasonable skies but with the same goals: to spread awareness about the climate crisis facing our planet, and to offer proactive solutions. If 100+ people can ride their bikes (in work clothes no less!) over 300 miles, there is real hope for the future.
The 1% for the Planet crew couldn’t be more proud of Victoria and all the other Climate Riders who made the journey from New York to DC last week.
We’re looking forward to sharing a post-ride report from Victoria, so stay tuned.
In the meantime I want to take this opportunity to welcome the companies who were motivated to make real change as well—using their businesses as the engines of positive change—but passed on the soaked chammy (and I’m not blaming them).
Congratulations and thank you to the following newly-minted member of 1% for the Planet!
Founded in 2002 by Yvon Chouinard of Patagonia and Craig Mathews of Blue Ribbon Flies, 1% for the Planet is an alliance of businesses that donate at least 1% of revenue to organizations focused in sustainability. The Jessie B. Cox Charitable Trust and 1% for the Planet share an interest in the long-term preservation of New England’s unique environmental resources and are working to put the power of business to work for the planet.
With the support of the Jessie B. Cox Charitable Trust, 1% for the Planet is dedicating a team, led by Barbara Friedsam, the organization’s New England Network Director, to expand business support for the environment initiatives in the region, such as preserving and enhancing New England’s large forests.
“In an effort to push the envelope of our social-environmental mission, … we are proud to make the commitment to join 1% for the Planet,” said Skinny Pancake co-founder/owner Benjy Adler. “We’ll donate 1% of our sales to grassroots environmental non-profits, with a focus on local food and farm-advocacy groups like NOFA-VT (North Eastern Farming Association of Vermont) and Intervale.”
To date, 1% member companies have donated nearly $1 million to New England non-profit organizations working on land conservation, climate change, water resource protection, renewable energy development, and environmental education. 1% members donate directly to approved non-profits allowing them to remain closely connected to the issues they care about.
1% for the Planet will continue to help businesses work for their communities, both locally and on a larger scale.
The new initiative will include heightening awareness in the business community about key environmental issues and targeted investment opportunities. Ultimately, this will enable collaboration between businesses and non-profits that generate long-term environmental and business benefits. Individuals can help by supporting 1% for the Planet member companies in their strategic giving choices and participating with our local partner NGOs. Please follow 1% for the Planet online for updates on regional developments.
“New England is fertile ground for both business and individual participation in the sustainability movement,” said Barbara Friedsam, New England Network Director at 1%. “We know New Englanders care about how business gets done. When businesses align their purpose with their consumers’ concerns, we can collectively increase the triple bottom line.”
That increased bottom line means making giving easier, which in turn results in happier communities and a healthier ecosystem.
“1% for the Planet applauds those businesses committed to donating 1% of their annual sales to environmental causes and welcomes inclusion of more members to the network. The work New England environmental organizations do to protect the unique resources in this region is critical, and 1% member companies can play a unique role in supporting their work. We are excited about the opportunity to grow our network in New England in collaboration with the Jessie B. Cox Charitable Trust” said Friedsam.
About 1% for the Planet
1% for the Planet is an alliance of business financially committed to creating a healthy planet. In 2011, the 1% network donated an estimated $22 million to sustainability initiatives. Despite the challenging economic backdrop, over the last three years we have grown by more than one new member company a day. As a network, 1% is a leading funder of environmental work globally, making reinvestment in the environment a necessary tenet of doing business.
About the Jessie B. Cox Charitable Trust
The Jessie B. Cox Charitable Trust, a New England Philanthropy, funds projects in New England in the areas of health, education and the environment. In its environmental grant making, the Trust is focused on large-scale habitat conservation. For more information on the Trust, please refer to www.jbcoxtrust.org.
As you might already know, 1% for the Planet’s network has a wide variety of participants from every part of the business and non-profit spectrum. The two new members I am featuring in this post are Lighthouse Conferencing and The Green Playroom. Read on to learn more about how you can responsibly and sustainably improve your business and your children’s lives!
Marc Gutman, the owner of Lighthouse Conferencing, is excited to announce that his company has recently become a member of 1% for the Planet. Lighthouse Conferencing delivers industry leading audio, web, and video services to businesses of all sizes. Lighthouse’s main goal is to make their clients look good while making sure they are having productive and effective meetings in a sustainable manner. If your business is looking for more sustainable conferencing support- make sure to check out Lighthouse’s services!
Lighthouse is excited to be the first conferencing company to make the 1% commitment! Since they are based in Colorado, it is almost a given that Marc and his employees love playing in the outdoors. They are thrilled to carry this energy into our network in the form of financial donations to our local non-profit partners and connections with other business members!
Another new member is The Green Playroom, an online shop committed to offering the best in high quality children’s furniture, room décor and kids toys for your children’s playroom. All of their products are sustainably produced, eco-friendly, and non-toxic. They realize the importance of having these products available, so that parents don’t have to worry about what they are surrounding their children with. The Green Playroom is excited to be part of this necessary cause and to actively participate in giving back to important environmental causes- and they are our first member based in North Dakota!
We are excited to have both of these new members in our network; please keep them in mind when thinking about how you can make your home and business life more sustainable!
Hey 1% Members and Nonprofits! Looking for a way to get your name out there in a creative and sustainable way?
In today’s crowded business market & social media whirlwind, it can be very difficult for a new business to get their name out in a creative & noticeable way. Add to that the desire to do so in an earth-friendly and sustainable manner, the challenge doubles. Eco-minded business owners may feel their options are very limited..
But they are not. 1% is proud to welcome Green Peak Promotions to our family of members. Green Peak Promotions is a woman owned business (soon to be WBENC certified) that focuses on creative and sustainable promotional products. They offer clients a combination of extensive industry knowledge, trusted international manufacturing and supplier relationships, and exceptional branding creativity.
The goal at Green Peak is to have the most comprehensive selection of sustainable promotional items available domestically and to offer low minimum, quick production, custom manufacturing overseas. This allows them to offer sustainable products on a custom basis that aren’t available in the US. Their overseas partners assist to produce products made from a wide selection of recycled materials including PET, ABS plastic, polypropylene, zinc, silicone, polyester and PVC. To offset their carbon footprint on the earth they will also be working with TerraPass to offer 100% carbon balanced shipping.
They offer a wide array of promotional products, ranging from apparel to candy, recycled and biodegradable products, while promoting sustainability from order placement to shipment.
Welcome to Green Peak Promotions! We are so excited and happy to have you in our ever-expanding 1% network!
Disadvantaged children in Sacred Valley, Peru participating in "Operation Genius" with the World Shamanic Yoga Institute.
The reasons businesses join 1% for the Planet are almost as diverse as the companies themselves, but Russ at World Shamanic Yoga Institute summed up his motivations particularly well:
The World Shamanic Yoga Institute is proud to be a member of 1% for the Planet. We have been working to foster health and well being at the individual, social and environmental levels for years and when we saw how well thought out the 1% program was, it was an “ah-ha!” moment.
We cannot possibly expect that government will take care of all the environmental issues our planet faces. Economic activity is a fact, and that economic activity MUST be tied to environmental programming if we are to hope for a tomorrow with healthy ecosystems for humanity and the other species on our planet.
1% helps make this a reality by channeling a percentage of gross economic activity back to well-conceived and vetted environmental programming. We look forward to doing our part by supporting organizations like Amazon Conservation Association.
We hope that in the future, 1% or more for the environment will be a standard and not an exception. We all share this beautiful planet. Let’s be intelligent citizens!
A good friend recently turned me on to a book by David Owen. While I’ve yet to read The Conundrum it’s next on my list, as soon as my boss Brittany lets me put down the Hunger Games.
Watching the promo video for Owen’s book got me thinking about tough, personal questions. I like to think I’m a fairly environmentally conscious person—I buy local, organic food when I can, ride my bike to the office more often than not and turn out the CFL’s whenever I leave a room.
Still, as Owen bluntly points out, there are glaring contradictions in the way I live. My passion for backcountry skiing and mountain biking has me driving Libby, my aging Volvo manwagon, around the northeast most weekends. I’ve forgotten my reusable shopping bags at home more times than I’d like to admit. In a week’s time I’m flying to Alaska in search of the snow that has eluded Vermont this winter.
Breaking news: it takes a lot of bike rides to the office to offset a flight to Alaska.
As much as I hate to admit it, Owen is right. Many of the innovations we think of as greening our lifestyles actually lead to increased resource use in the long run, as efficiency allows greater consumption. Damn, it’s depressing.
So how do we shake the funk?
The only answer, as I see it, is advocating for the kind of change that co-opts everyone as part of the solution, from the darkest green consumer to the most mainstream American. What better way to do just that than for businesses–who provide for almost all of our needs–to be the solution?
Companies that join 1% for the Planet are the leading edge of a paradigm shift. So pick up a copy of The Conundrum, and join me in welcoming the following businesses who have decided to be the solution:
One of the most amazing facets of working for 1% is learning about diversity among our member companies. No two companies are quite the same, except when it comes to their dedication to protecting our planet and promoting sustainability. This point is exemplified with two of our newest members, Four Crows Photography and Polar Pillow.
Four Crows Photography is dedicated capturing the beauty of the natural world that surrounds us, and those moments of serenity that too often go unnoticed in the frantic pace of daily life. Photographer Dave Mangels launched Four Crows with the mission to practice mindful photography, as well as contributing back to the planet in which inspires him. Shedding his life in a cubicle and armed with a camera and an amazing eye, these photographs capture the majesty and beauty of the world that we strive to protect.
“As someone launching a new business, I thought it was vital to build an ethical and moral foundation to Four Crows Photography. My participation in 1% For The Planet is an essential way to demonstrate my commitment to the environmental causes that are so important to my artistic inspiration. Four Crows Photography plans to support a variety of causes as it grows, but foremost among them will be the Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance for its work defending the Redrock wilderness, and the Trustees of the Reservation for its preservation of open spaces in my home state of Massachusetts.”
1% also welcomes PolarPillow to our family. As a person who is all-too-familiar with erratic sleep patterns and insomnia, I was fascinated to learn more about this company and what it offers for people who cope with the same issues.
PolarPillow is an award-winning cooling pillow that uses specialized gel technology to generate coolness. By bringing science-based innovation to the pillow market, the company aims to help its customers sleep better and live healthier. The pillow itself is kept cool, which in turn promotes a better and more restful night of sleep.
The PolarPillow team has joined the 1% movement to demonstrate their belief that the health of the planet is critical for entrepreneurship to thrive. PolarPillow has identified Philippe Cousteau’s EarthEcho International as its first beneficiary. EarthEcho creates programs that empower youth to restore and protect our oceans.
From breathtaking natural photography to pillows that help people rest better and promote health, our members continue to be as diverse as the planet that we share. Aligned by their dedication to protecting the world around us, we welcome these amazing companies to our 1% family and are so happy to have you!
It’d be easy to let the state of the world get you down. We’ve got a polarized political system that makes rational dialogue seem impossible, a stagnant economy, freaky weather that brings floods followed by droughts and a skyrocketing global population thirsty for the material comforts that got us in this mess. And that’s not half of it.
Still, it’s hard to feel hopeless when you see people coming together to create the change we need so desperately. Yesterday, when news that the Keystone XL pipeline was once again a threat, 1% for the Planet nonprofit partner 350.org mobilized more than 800,000 people in just 24 hours to send Congress an emphatic NO. The message couldn’t have been clearer.
Last night Bill McKibben had the spotlight on The Colbert Report—check it out if you haven’t seen it yet.
The motivation that gets 800,000 to coalesce around something they care so deeply about is the same energy that motivates businesses to be part of the solution—they’re working hard to create a world that we all want to live in.