It’s the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, and this year’s theme is Climate Action. Action is critical to move us toward a circular economy, reduce carbon emissions, enhance and safeguard our world’s limited natural resources, and protect communities, peoples and economies. From electrifying our transportation sector to sourcing power from renewable sources to advancing a systems approach in all of our work, the Minnesota Sustainable Growth Coalition and its members are taking action and role modeling their leadership this Earth Day.
First, a recent news story from the Star Tribune that I want to highlight is about Coalition member Aveda’s new solar garden, and how they are using solar to help power their headquarters in Blaine. “It’s a great opportunity to show our commitment to the environment,” said Dan Schibel, Global Sustainability Manager for Aveda in the column.
Aveda’s action around solar is a wonderful example of how green investments are meeting consumer and investor demands, how businesses can advance green jobs and clean energy initiatives, and how our shared commitment to a sustainable future benefits local communities.
And Aveda isn’t the only Coalition member role modeling and taking action. Earlier this year, Newsweek ranked America’s most responsible companies, scored in three main areas: corporate governance, social and environmental. Many of our members appeared on that list! General Mills was ranked #8, Target #21, Best Buy #53, 3M #56, Xcel Energy #123, Ecolab #160, Estée Lauder #200 (Aveda is an Estee Lauder company) and Tennant #215. Each of these companies are committed to leadership that goes far beyond profit. They’re working to make our world a better place and see the value of giving back.
At the Coalition, we work on projects and share ideas that transcend across sectors and industries. Efforts to take action on climate for our members can help mitigate risk, strengthen supply changes, attract and maintain world-class employee talent, and advance a thriving, circular economy. We know that collaboration means we can go faster and farther together, and our actions have a greater, more amplified impact.
This Earth Day is unique. Right now, our world is taking action on a global pandemic, showing how we can unify to tackle crises and prioritize the health and well-being of people and our planet. The lessons we learn from this pandemic and the success of a systems approach will help inform action on climate. Even during these difficult times, we see the value of our work as a Coalition and continue to advance solutions around energy, water and materials, taking action for the long-term health of our neighbors, our world and our economy.