For the second consecutive year, Ocean Wise® has been named one of Canada’s Greenest Employers for 2019 and recognized for its commitment to sustainability, including its employee-lead Green Team, the national Ocean Wise Seafood and Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup programs, as well as its waste diversion practices. This designation, which is awarded by the editors of Canada’s Top 100 Employers project and organized by Mediacorp Canada Inc., recognizes employers that have created a culture of environmental awareness in their organization and, as a result, have developed exceptional earth-friendly initiatives, becoming leaders in sustainable practices.
“We are honoured to be recognized as one of Canada’s Greenest Employers for the second year in a row,” said Lasse Gustavsson, president and CEO of Ocean Wise. “Ocean Wise is a global not-for-profit organization dedicated to ensuring our oceans are healthy and thriving – sustainability and conservation are at the core of everything we do. With more than 1,500 staff and volunteers, this award is a testament to the incredible passion our team has for our oceans and to our mission. We are in good company on the list of Canada’s Greenest Employers and challenge other organizations to join us on this journey.”
The winning employers are selected after a detailed application evaluation by editors of Canada’s Top 100 Employers based on the following criteria: the unique environmental initiatives or programs they have developed; the extent to which they have been successful in reducing their own environmental footprint; the degree to which their employees are involved in these programs and contribute unique skills; and the extent to which their environmental initiatives have become linked to the employer’s public identity to attract new people to the organization. This year, 75 organizations have been named to Canada’s Greenest Employers list.
In 2018, Ocean Wise implemented numerous sustainability initiatives in an effort to be more earth and ocean-friendly. Ocean Wise launched its #BePlasticWise pledge campaign aimed at raising awareness about ocean plastic and building collective action by asking people to reduce their plastic waste. To date, the pledge has engaged more than 15,000 people worldwide. The Café at the Vancouver Aquarium®, an Ocean Wise initiative, launched a new program that reduces compost waste by repurposing imperfect produce into nutrient-dense feed for animals living in the Aquarium’s Graham Amazon Gallery. The Aquarium’s Gift Shop continued to work with suppliers to make high volume items more sustainable, transitioning hooks used for stuffed animals from plastic to cotton, and to provide more sustainable options for visitors, offering products such as natural rubber bath toys and bamboo-based dishes and cutlery.
Editors of Canada’s Top 100 Employers selected Ocean Wise based on its commitment to sustainability, noting these best practices:
- With more than 40 active employee members, Ocean Wise’s Green Team hosts numerous educational events throughout the year. These initiatives include a unique plastic-free “Mason Jar Challenge” that challenges employees to only use as much plastic as they can fit into one mason jar over the course of one week, workshops that teach employees how to make everything from beeswax wraps to green cleaning supplies for the home, and a clothing repair service.
- It is the founder of the Ocean Wise Seafood program, which works with more than 700 partners in Canada to recommend ocean-friendly seafood choices to consumers and ensure that ocean life will be abundant for generations to come. It is also a founding partner of the longstanding Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup, a national conservation initiative that encourages people to take action in their communities wherever water meets land, one bit of trash at a time.
- The Café at the Vancouver Aquarium, an Ocean Wise initiative, continues on their journey to send zero waste to landfill by eliminating plastic water, pop and juice bottles and using compostable cutlery. The organization as a whole has achieved an impressive 76 per cent waste diversion rate by moving beyond municipal minimums, using sustainable disposable streams for organics, e-waste, light bulbs, cooking oils, furniture, metal, motor oil, pallets, soft plastic film, styrofoam and rigid plastics, latex gloves, writing instruments, ceramic dishes and even textiles.
View the full list of Canada’s Greenest Employers by visiting www.canadastop100.com/environmental.