Our Commitment to Sustainability
Protecting and preserving our environment is more important than ever, and we know that it takes thoughtful action – not just words – to drive meaningful change. In 2021, GME set out to become a more sustainable organization, one that both understands it’s unique impact on the environment and takes steps to mitigate and reduce where possible and offset where necessary.
With guidance from environmental consulting firm Bridge House Advisors and leaders from across the GME team, we set out to gather the data necessary to measure1 our organization’s unique carbon footprint 2 for the 2021 calendar year. Using the information we gathered from the evaluation process, we implemented several initiatives designed to reduce our energy use, emissions, and waste-to-landfill:
- We replaced lighting with high-efficiency LEDs in all our offices and warehouses to decrease energy use.
- We prioritized virtual meetings to reduce the need for car and air travel, helping reduce related emissions.
- We installed water bottle refilling stations and implemented a cardboard recycling program to reduce waste-to-landfill.
As we implemented these reduction initiatives internally, we also looked to external solutions partners to help us further our sustainability goals. The Arbor Day Foundation , the world’s largest non-profit dedicated to planting trees, helped identify verified carbon projects that aligned with our needs. GME ultimately selected two projects, The Kasigau Corridor REDD+ Project and reforestation efforts in the Mississippi Alluvial Valley, as carbon offset solutions. The credits we retired through these projects helped us account for the remainder of our unabated, measured emissions for the 2021 calendar year.
The Kasigau Corridor REDD+ Project (VIEW PUBLIC RETIRED CREDIT REGISTRY)
Led by the pioneering conservationists at Wildlife Works , this project utilizes the REDD+ model (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation) to establish social programs and additional incentives with local residents that aim to protect over 200,000 hectares of dryland forest. These programs and incentives help provide jobs to local community members of the Kasigau Corridor region that replace unsustainable sources of income such as poaching, subsistence agriculture, and illegal tree harvesting. In an area where wildlife and human survival have been at odds, this project has created a market-driven solution to wildlife conservation through an expansive community-led, community-based conservation model, with profound and lasting impact.
The Mississippi Alluvial Valley (VIEW PUBLIC RETIRED CREDIT REGISTRY)
In the southeastern United States, the Arbor Day Foundation is partnering with GreenTrees® to restore degraded agricultural lands back to their original and highly beneficial forest ecosystem in the lower Mississippi Alluvial Valley. Through this program, 130,000+ acres of land have been replanted and managed through partnerships with over 600 private landowners.
"Our company has always thought about ways to be more sustainable. From having one of the first net-zero electricity commercial buildings in our county
at our previous headquarters, to replacing the lighting in all of our facilities to higher efficiency LEDs with motion sensors, we have always worked
to be effective stewards. In the last few years, we've learned more about ways to close the gap further on processes that are difficult to completely
engineer out of the business. Finding a way to completely offset our footprint became our goal in 2021. By the end of the year, we found tremendous
partners to help with both a comprehensive audit and a path to the necessary carbon offsets."
- Caleb Messer, President, GMES
11 Bridge House utilized the World Resource Institute Greenhouse Gas Protocol Standard to calculate GME Supply Co.’s carbon footprint. WRI GHG Protocol: https://ghgprotocol.org/corporate-standard
|Source of Information
|Natural gas data from utility provider bills
|Estimated mileage data from fleet vehicles based on current vehicle mileage and model data
|Purchased Electricity (Location-based)
|Electricity data from utility provider bills
|Recycling data based on hauler and/or facilities manager account