World Earth Day, an annual global event demonstrating support for environmental protection, takes place on Monday, April 22. More than a billion people worldwide are taking part, and The Stars Group is proud to be among them.
When you recycle your soda bottles, clean out your empty glass jars, and switch from plastic to paper straws, what difference does it all really make?
A whole lot, it turns out. These small actions might seem fairly insignificant in the grand scheme of things, but when more than a billion people around the world make these changes, it adds up to a huge shift in our impact on the environment.
Small changes can have enormous positive consequences, and that’s what World Earth Day has been about since its inception in 1970. Back then, 20 million Americans took to the streets for peaceful protests regarding environmental reform. Today, nearly 50 years later, Earth Day is considered the largest secular holiday in the world, recognised in 192 countries.
Last year’s theme focused on plastic, and a multi-year campaign was created to end plastic pollution worldwide. It continues to be a major concern, and in 2017 The Stars Group made major reductions to its own contribution.
Surrounded by the sea, our colleagues on the Isle of Man took big steps to remove single-use products to help ensure less non-biodegradable waste ends up in our ocean. Items like disposable plastic cups, stirrers, cutlery, bottles and cardboard hot drinks cups were replaced with environmentally friendly substitutes, and the results have been staggering. Some 26,000 fewer plastic bottles now end up as waste per year.
Single-use takeaway plastic and polystyrene food packaging were also replaced with biodegradable packaging in our staff restaurant, and employees are now encouraged to bring in their own reusable food containers. This has saved approximately 65,000 single-use plastic food containers.
Moreover, in our London office, the ‘Green Stars’ have reduced plastic waste significantly. For example, all vending machines now stocked with environmentally friendly alternatively packaged drinks. Additionally, in the Floria office plastic waste usage was reduced with the replacement of single-use plastic bottles and paper cups by using reusable (and stylish) water bottles.
PROTECT OUR SPECIES
This year’s theme is ‘Protect Our Species’; a response to the destruction of plant and wildlife populations by human activity such as climate change, deforestation, poaching and pollution.
The Stars Group is playing its part. Our new office in Sofia, Bulgaria has a high eco-friendly specification that focuses on saving resources. Features include:
- Thermal insulation minimising the need for heating and air conditioning.
- A tank which collects rainwater and purifies it for reuse, which will reduce water consumption by over 90%. Renewable sources will be used to heat water for domestic needs.
- A ventilation system controlled by CO2 sensors will deliver fresh air.
- All parking places in the building will be equipped with charging stations for electric cars powered by the photovoltaic plant of the building releasing zero-energy emissions. Bicycle areas will also be provided, the building has direct access to the city’s cycling network.
As a global company, we know that we play a big role in seeking sustainable solutions to help limit climate change. It’s something our employees know too, thanks to in-house initiatives raising awareness of environmental issues.
HOW TO PLAY (YOUR PART)
Usually, we’d be explaining how you can play poker, but here we’ll be looking at how you can play your part for Earth Day 2019.
For the first Earth Day in 1970, anti-pollution cartoonist Walt Kelly wrote: “We have met the enemy and he is us”. But how can you ensure you’re part of the solution rather than the problem? Well, here are some easy tips you can implement today.
- Grab a reusable coffee cup rather than buying throwaway cups.
- Pack your own lunch in a reusable container. You’ll help the environment, and there’s a good chance you’ll save money too.
- Glass can be recycled endlessly. Help out your local recycling centre by cleaning out your empty condiment and peanut butter jars, then recycle them (the same goes for metal tins).
- Try going green with your commute. Where possible switch from driving to using public transport, or even better, walk or cycle.
- Pick up litter and put it in the appropriate bin. Why not get involved in an organised beach clean or litter pick