Today we would like to tell you about one of the initiatives that the ESG task force had during the month of June.
But first…what is the ESG task force?
It’s a group of volunteers from different teams and departments within SimScale that work together on Environment (E), Social (S), and Governance (G) related projects. In the time it has been functioning, the task force has developed a dozen policies, guidelines, and procedures to strengthen the company’s governance, measured our carbon footprint and achieved Carbon Neutral status during 2023, raised awareness through internal training on topics like Workplace Harassment and Unconscious Bias, and laid the groundwork to collaborate more and directly with our society with initiatives such as the Volunteer Program, among others.
World Environment Day
As we were preparing the Q2 2023 program, we knew we wanted to organize an inclusive activity for everyone, regardless of their location, something fun that would directly impact the environment. The timing was perfect: we knew that World Environment Day, a day dedicated to raising awareness about the dangers the environment faces and what we can do to protect it, was celebrated in June.
During the meeting, Steffen, one of the members of the ESG task force, suggested: “How about an activity where whoever comes to the office chooses to take the stairs (note: we’re on the fourth floor) instead of the elevator? Based on how many times they do it, we could plant trees in a place that has recently suffered deforestation or similar damage. We can do it throughout the month.”
Done! We had the perfect idea for the occasion and we named it #WorldEnvironmentalMonth🌳! Now, we needed to address a few issues:
1. How do we count the number of times the stairs are used?
No problem! With a couple of components, Steve, another member of the ESG task force, took on designing this amazing counter that each person would press upon entering or leaving the office, before using the stairs.
2. How do we involve our remote colleagues who can’t come to the office?
Well, that’s simple! Stairs are not exclusive to the office. They are everywhere: public transportation, buildings, stores, etc. Each time they choose to use stairs instead of an elevator or escalator, it counts too!
3. How do we record it?
We committed to making a weekly post in a special Slack channel for the #WorldEnvironmentalMonth🌳 where we discussed highly relevant topics on the path to sustainability (e.g., plastic pollution, deforestation, water conservation, and renewable energy), along with statistical data and interesting articles. Whenever a colleague used the stairs, they could react with an emoji to the weekly posts!
Thanks to the contribution of everyone who participated in this initiative, SimScale participated in the planting of 100 trees in the Bavaria region of Germany, alongside onetreeplanted. This contribution helped improve an area that had been affected by drought, storms, and bark beetle infestation. Furthermore, using stairs instead of the elevator resulted in saving 10.491 kg of carbon.
We’re thrilled about this activity and look forward to sharing many more with you in the future!
Stay tuned for more insights into SimScale and see what the team has been up to on our @lifeatsimscale Instagram feed. Want to start your own SimScale story? Make sure to keep an eye on our careers page for possible openings!