Climate change is complicated, and we are all still working out the best way to be truly sustainable. But, what we do know is that businesses must do something now, to start to offset the impact we all make on our planet.
While our overall goal is to become a positive impact company, by supplying high-quality plant products and services without causing unnecessary harm to the planet, it is of course far more complicated than it sounds.
However, by partnering with organisations who have the expertise and the values we can start to find the most effective ways to make a difference.
This aim is what brought us to the Bristol-based organisation Ecologi. Ecologi help businesses to reduce their environmental impact by planting trees and supporting world-leading climate crisis projects.
Their aim is to get each business employee to reach a climate positive status, offsetting their carbon emissions in both their professional and personal lives. These are often small steps but, done together, make a big difference.
Each partner business gets a ‘digital forest’, an online tool which shows them how many trees they have planted so far.
As a business we are committed to offsetting 110% of our annual carbon emissions, so we can give back to the planet more than we take. So, tree planting through Ecologi is a significant step towards achieving this.
Ecologi’s values and business model aligned perfectly with out environmental goals and we love how easy it is to keep up to date on our progress.
As ambassadors to the benefits of plants Ecologi knows that one of the best tools to tackle the climate crisis and keep our temperatures from rising above 1.5C is to plant trees. They are also crucial to preventing ecological collapse.
Ecologi’s tree planting partner The Eden Reforestation Projects plant millions of trees around the world each month and Ecologi are currently supporting their incredible work in Madagascar.
Sponsoring projects around the world
Ecologi also help to fund carbon reduction projects around the world.
Madagascar has suffered extreme deforestation, having lost 90% of its rainforest. We are supporting projects planting trees here. The plan is to fill in a 1,354 hectare patch (about 2 million trees) and then move up the coast to reforest a new area.
Read more about the project here
Ecologi also invest money into other projects that remove greenhouse gasses.
Each month they pick the best CO2 reduction projects with Gold Standard certification, so we can trust our money is going to the highest-rated projects and making the strongest impact possible.
Mindful Supply Chain
Aside from our partnership with Ecologi, we also regularly scrutinise our business practises to see where and how we can make positive changes.
One key area is our supply chain. Creating and supplying high-quality plant displays is a very worthwhile industry but it also comes at a cost to the planet.
Our plants and some of our pots have to be sourced from outside the UK and our peat free compost needs to be manufactured, using materials that also have to be imported.
To align our supply chain more closely with our values, we aim to use environmentally friendly alternatives (whenever possible), to work with local companies to reduce our transport costs, scrutinise the origin of our materials, and only use manufacturers with similar values.
RE-ROOTING NATURE: SAVING THOUSANDS OF OAK TREES
Trees play a vital role in protecting our planet for the future, as well as keeping earth, and us, healthy and happy in the present. At Urban Planters, we reconnect people with nature, mostly through planting schemes but sometimes through something more ambitious.
We have been working with long-standing client McArthur Glen to save thousands of oak trees, relocating them to new sites around Britain. Some 5,500 of our donated trees are going to national park initiatives at The Forest of Cornwall and the Pembrokeshire coast, where volunteers will plant them and they can take root, for future generations to enjoy.
We are also planting hundreds of trees across McArthur Glen’s retail sites and gifting potted trees to several local schools.
There is always more work to be done in reducing our impact, but we feel we are taking steps in the right direction, steps which are already having an impact, and will set us on a path to keep doing more.