Earth Day

Earth Day is a chance to appreciate the bounty and resplendent beauty found only on the third rock from the Sun. Hiking in the woods, absorbing the colors of sunset, volunteering at a trash cleanup, kayaking a river, or even watching a nature documentary are great ways to celebrate this weekend. Get out there and enjoy the planet we call home!

Earth Day is also a day to recognize our responsibility to address the impacts we have on the planet. In 2019, Greta Thunberg raised a challenge to business leaders to address the deeply complex issue of climate change. That speech led our leadership team to realize our business had a responsibility to lead. We love architecting solutions to complex problems with no correct answer, and, getting to net zero certainly fits that description.

Considering our carbon footprint as a company

We’re a fully remote software consultancy, so we have a very small carbon footprint from our direct operations. It would be easy to buy some carbon credits or make a pledge to plant a bunch of trees at some future date and call it a greenwashed day. Those minimal solutions wouldn’t address our actual carbon footprint though. Our major emissions come from the homes of our employees. We needed a solution that helped them make investments and change their behaviors.

Our Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund (GHGR)

We knew we should leverage the creativity of our people, so we created a Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund. The fund allows any CodeScientist to submit up to $500 a year in expenses on anything that reduces their personal carbon footprint. Our employees have used the fund on big-ticket items like solar panels or electric vehicles, practical projects like home insulation or smart thermostats, and unexpected things like cloth diaper services or home composting systems.

What we have learned collectively as a company has amazed us:

  • We started with over 50% participation in the first year and that has increased each year
  • We have an active Slack channel where our people share ideas and encourage each other
  • Our new hires mention the GHGR Fund as something that helped them choose CodeScience as an employer
  • The GHGR Fund is called out as a positive in nearly every exit interview

Addressing Climate Anxiety

Knowledge economy companies like CodeScience invest heavily in the financial, medical, and mental health of our people. That overall health allows them to creatively solve the complex problems of our clients. As our employees, and our society at large, grow to understand the impacts of climate change and the sea changes required to achieve net zero emissions, they can develop climate anxiety or hopelessness. Our employee-first approach enables the sharing of ideas, direct personal action, and measurable progress. Just like our other employee benefits, the GHGR Fund helps our people address productivity-sapping anxiety.

The proprietary solutions we develop for our customers are used for their profit and competitive advantage in software markets. The culture we offer at CodeScience enables us to beat our competition in the talent market for the best and the brightest. The GHGR Fund we offer is an ingredient of the recipe that creates our unique culture. It’s not proprietary though, it is a solution we can offer publicly to companies looking for better ways to address climate change and employee health.

If you are interested in making a business case for a GHGR Fund at your company, please reach out to [email protected]. If you would like to work at a company that cares about more than the bottom line, check out our careers page.