Walk the Talk
Energetics employees are dedicated to reducing our impact on the environment. We express that dedication both through the work that we do, and the way that we do it. Our Walk the Talk initiative is a company-wide effort to encourage sustainable practices in our everyday activities. From making changes to our facilities to encouraging adjustments in personal behavior, this initiative helps ensure that the way we work is consistent with the work we do.
Energetics makes a conscious effort to conserve energy and reduce our environmental footprint by buying renewable power, reusing and recycling office supplies, incorporating green practices into our facilities, and much more.
Buying 20% Renewable Power
Energetics promotes the development of clean, wind-generated electricity by purchasing renewable energy certificates equal to 20% of our total electricity use. These certificates enable Energetics to support clean, efficient, low-carbon technologies, and to participate in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Green Power Partnership. Since 2008, Energetics' renewable power purchases have avoided an estimated 683,000 pounds of carbon dioxide emissions—the equivalent of removing 60 vehicles from the road for one year!
Using Recycled Paper
Energetics uses recycled paper in all of our facilities. To reduce the volume of paper used, we made double-sided printing the default setting on all capable printers.
Purchasing Energy Star-Qualified Equipment
We purchase only Energy Star-qualified products for all eligible office equipment.
Recycling or Reusing Office Supplies
We recycle all paper, plastic, cans, and glass, and reuse or donate all unneeded computer equipment, furniture, and other office supplies whenever possible. We also recycle or properly dispose of nonworking computer equipment, batteries, CDs, transparency film, and other miscellaneous office items.
Upcycling Eliminates Waste
In addition to recycling, we eliminate wastes from going to landfills by “upcycling.” Non-recyclable items such as candy wrappers, chip bags, cleaning product packaging, and writing instruments are collected and sent to TerraCycle, a company that repurposes the waste into useable products such as shopping bags, flower pots, and park benches. For every item collected, Energetics receives points that are redeemed for a cash donation to a nonprofit organization that plants trees, feeds the hungry, or provides clean water to global communities.
Incorporating Energy-Efficient Lighting
We incorporated natural lighting into the floor plan of our headquarters in Columbia to reduce lighting needs and equipped all lighting fixtures with energy-efficient devices. Motion-sensor light switches save energy when offices and conference rooms are not in use.
Cleaning with Green Products
The janitorial staff in the Columbia office only uses cleaning products that meet the LEED for Existing Buildings standards. Substituting non-toxic, green cleaners can reduce the exposure of harmful substance to people and the environment.
Monitoring Energy Use
Our headquarters is separately metered for utility readings, allowing us to collect and track energy consumption and demonstrate how our energy efficiency efforts are making a real difference.
We encourage our employees to use public transportation, bicycle, or carpool to get to work whenever possible. Energetics offers tax-free public transportation passes to promote the use of mass transportation, and our Washington, DC, office is located steps from a metro station. In addition, several Washington-based employees routinely ride their bicycles to the DC office, which has set a goal of commuting 9,000 miles by bicycle in 2012. Our main offices feature bicycle parking and shower rooms to support bicycle commuting.
Community Supported Agriculture Program
Employees in the Columbia office can sign up to receive a selection of fresh, seasonal produce delivered directly to the office each week during the summer by a local farm through the company’s Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program. The CSA program benefits the environment by reducing the distance between the farm and the consumer, thereby reducing carbon emissions from transporting the produce, and by using less toxic farming methods. The Columbia office has offered the CSA program for the past three summers.
Participation in Green Office Practices
All employees are encouraged to be active participants in the Walk the Talk initiative and contribute their expertise and efforts to advancing the cause. Our employee handbook includes guidelines on conserving resources in and around the office, including:
- Turning off computers at the end of the day
- Minimizing paper use by editing documents electronically
- Printing double-sided whenever possible
- Utilizing recycling and compost bins
- Packing lunches to avoid unnecessary car travel during lunchtime
- Avoiding use of electric space heaters
Energetics' Walk the Talk Champion Award
This annual award recognizes the employee who best exemplifies the Walk the Talk spirit throughout the year. The recipient is an employee who adheres to green practices in his or her daily activities, is an active participant in Walk the Talk projects and volunteers time to the cause, and exhibits initiative and leadership in advancing green practices that will have a lasting impact. The efforts of the award winner directly help Energetics reduce our energy use, decrease our carbon footprint, minimize our impact on natural resources, and increase awareness of the company’s environmental performance. Recipients of the Walk the Talk Champion Award are nominated and chosen by their fellow employees. To date, Walk The Talk Champions have been recognized for their efforts to promote commuting to work by bicycle, encouraging employees to support local farm stands and farmers’ markets, and encouraging recycling in our Washington, DC office.