Celebrating Earth Month With Team Gen

How our sustainability benefits and employee groups help protect the planet
Apr 26, 2024 10:00 AM ET

Written by Amanda Davis Sr. Manager, CR and Environment

Gen Blog | People & Impact

Earth Month 2024 is a special one. It not only reminds us of our shared responsibility to help protect the planet but also marks the two-year anniversary of our Sustainable Home Improvement Program (SHIP), which has become one of our most successful and beloved sustainability initiatives.

We launched SHIP on Earth Day 2022, to help Gen team members bring sustainability into their daily lives. The award-winning program offers individual grants of up to $500 per year for home projects that benefit the environment, and the response from Gen team members has been extraordinary. To date, more than 1,800 SHIP projects, both big and small, have been funded, from upgrading home appliances to more energy-efficient models to planting trees and backyard gardens.

“I recently moved into a new house and needed to upgrade it to make it more heat efficient,” said Lisa Traynor, who works on the Global Supply Chain Team and is based in Dublin. “Although beautiful and green, Ireland can also be wet and damp! I used the SHIP grant towards attic spray foam insulation which reduced my energy use and my energy costs, making my home much more efficient in terms of heat retention. The SHIP grant was easy to access and easy to use.”

Gen team members interested in using the benefit submit an application that describes how they will use the funds. The Gen Environment team reviews each one then reimburses the applicant once they have completed the project.

“I chose to plant trees in my backyard,” said Alan Zhang, a Senior Network Security Engineer based in Ontario, Canada. “I believe it is a positive and meaningful way to celebrate and make a difference in the world. The trees can improve local air quality, provide habitat for wildlife and reduce erosion. I believe this program is a good approach to build a better world for future generations.”

The long-term benefits that the program offers were a major motivator for team members to take part. Katharina Polainer, a Sales & Marketing Specialist who lives in Tettnang, Germany, used SHIP to purchase solar panels and an accompanying battery for her home. Efforts like these also help us lower our overall Scope 3 emissions—GHG emissions from upstream and downstream activities.

“With PV panels, we can produce environmentally friendly power for our own house and the community in peak seasons,” Katharina explained. “I highly appreciate the incentive as PV panel prices and battery prices are still at a pretty high level, so anything that helps us financially is a huge plus.”

The SHIP initiative is one of many initiatives that helped empower employees to choose sustainability this Earth Month. The TERRA employee resource group, open to all team members who are interested in environmental topics, hosts events year-round to raise awareness of sustainability, biodiversity, green energy and more. Over the past several months, TERRA has hosted webinars on the impacts of climate change on the weather, major takeaways from the United Nations COP28 climate conference and tips on going green during the holiday season. The group has grown to more than 70 members globally.

The more we do to reduce our impacts, the more sustainable our world can become. Learn how you can take action today at https://www.earthday.org/earth-day-2024/.