If you’re not concerned about climate change, you’re not paying attention. The effects are all around us, and the evidence that human activities cause climate change can’t be ignored. While it might all seem like bad news, it allows us to identify areas where we can make a difference. Any positive change we can make is not only a good idea—it’s our responsibility. Even something as seemingly small as sustainable canning could make a difference.
Don’t Need a Weatherman
Scientists who identify the causes of climate change have provided unmistakable proof that we’re changing the planet in surprising and profoundly concerning ways, yet over 20% of those polled in the US do not believe human activity is to blame. Educating ourselves and each other is one of the best things we can do to encourage change.
We have fewer than 30 glaciers left in Glacier National Park, down from around 150 when the park was first created just over 100 ago. Of the glaciers left, most have shrunk by two-thirds or more. Most of the thickest Arctic ice is gone—a stunning 95%—and scientists believe we could see an ice-free Arctic summer as early as 2040.
Climate disasters have more than tripled in the past 30 years; the average sea level has risen by about eight inches in the past century—there’s a virtually never-ending list of disturbing statistics. If anything is clear, it’s that it’s time we all act to reverse these trends.
What You Can Do
Most of us are at least somewhat environmentally conscious, making efforts to cut our impact on the environment by carpooling, recycling at home, and maybe even encouraging changes in our workplaces—like going as paperless as possible, making sure all the lights are off after working hours, or even changing the kinds of chemicals used in routine cleaning. These efforts are steps in the right direction, but we owe it to future generations to do more.
Urging those responsible for setting policies where you work to make bold steps in supporting sustainability is a great way to help. When a company makes formal and public statements about instituting eco-friendly policies, they commit to practices for which they can then be held accountable.
Accountability is a powerful tool for good. A formal statement presented to internal staff and external business partners and consumers spells out the kinds of efforts possible. In addition to creating accountability in the public eye, it can serve as a source of inspiration not only to executives and stakeholders, but also to the consumers that a company serves.
What We’re Doing
We’re instituting policies and practices geared toward offsetting our carbon footprint and have gotten very close to 0.0—there’s more to do, so we’re doing more. We believe that practicing what we preach is more important than preaching, but in the interest of creating some of that accountability we’re advocating, it might be helpful to talk about our efforts.
Canning is a better alternative than other packaging products which cost more to produce and recycle, and we’re grateful to be able to bring sustainable canning to more people by making canning machines and canning technology accessible, but there’s more we can do.
Energy efficiency is a core part of our company culture and informs all of our decisions. We use smart thermostats to control the heating and cooling in our facility, which helps us save up to 15% of the energy we would otherwise use. The energy we use comes from clean, renewable wind power. This year, we’re looking into supporting initiatives to use solar and are continually looking at new ways to reduce, reuse, and recycle the materials we use.
Because we’re involved in canning and making canning machines, we’re very conscious of the benefits of recycling aluminum. We recycle a lot of aluminum cans, and we urge all of our partners to do the same. Recycling cans is one of the easiest things you can do, as you don’t even need to remove paper labels or scrub the cans clean the way you do with some other materials. Recycling aluminum cans reduces the amount that ends up in landfills by almost 55% and saves 95% of the energy needed to create cans made from newly refined aluminum.
It’s the Little—And Not So Little—Things
The list goes on—we’ve built power and water shut-offs into our systems to help further reduce our carbon footprint, use rechargeable batteries over traditional alkaline disposables, have stopped using paper towels by switching to a washable and reusable option, and have swapped out conventional warehouse lighting for LED bulbs, which use as much as 75% less energy than traditional incandescents.
We’ve changed our travel policy to reduce our carbon emissions, choosing airlines with eco-friendly initiatives and using hybrid vehicles whenever possible. We even have a team of people who meet twice a month to identify and discuss opportunities for greater sustainability.
Twin Monkeys Beverage Systems believes that we’re responsible for not only minimizing any adverse effect our operations could have but also giving back to the environment. We’ve partnered with One Tree Planted, made regular donations to further their efforts, and given money for every canning machine we sell.
The Right Thing, Right Now
Sustainability isn’t an option or an aspiration we can hope to achieve someday. It’s a necessity if we want to preserve the world as we know it for future generations. It’s a duty that we all bear responsibility for. Twin Monkeys Beverage Systems embraces that challenge, and our commitment to sustainability is one of our driving principles.
Again, we’re not big fans of preachy rants, but we hope to inspire and inform as much as possible. If you’re using canning to contain and distribute your product, you’re already using a material that is much easier to recycle and costs much less to transport than other alternatives because of its light weight. If we can work with you to help bring the benefit of sustainable canning to your customers and your community, we’d love the opportunity.