Monday, July 12, 2010

Smart and green in the office

Smart and green in the office
The Philippine Star
July 12, 2010

MANILA, Philippines - Mobile phone services are inherently earth-friendly since they allow subscribers to reduce their carbon footprint by communicating and conducting transactions wirelessly.

Employees of leading wireless services provider Smart Communications, Inc., however, are taking a step further to be eco-friendly not only in their work, but also at work.

They are planting trees, recycling, patronizing earth-friendly products, promoting biking as an alternative mode of transport, segregating waste, and participating in a river cleanup as part of the activities for the Philippine Environment Month under Kabalikat, the company’s corporate social responsibility program.

 “Environmental awareness is high among our employees since Smart has been consistently engaging them as volunteers in several earth-friendly projects like SmarTrees, our nationwide tree-planting initiative. At the same time, we regularly conduct awareness campaigns that highlight eco-friendly measures at the workplace, said Smart Public Affairs Group head Ramon R. Isberto.

Tree Planting
In Cebu, employees from Smart and parent company Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co. (PLDT) trooped to Barangay Tabunan for a tree-planting activity organized by the Philippine Business for Social Progress. They helped plant trees that included the Cebu cinnamon, fire tree, kamatsili, almaciga, tipolo, narra, bangkal, and taloto in the mountain barangay, which is part of the Central Cebu Protected Landscape and the source of Metro Cebu’s water.

Smart, through its tree-planting program, has been helping reforest the country since 2004. In 2009 alone, the combined efforts of Smart employee-volunteers and community partners have resulted in the planting of close to 350,000 seedlings and mangrove propagules in selected provinces across the country.

Trash For Cash
Employees at the Makati head office started with a Recyclables Collection Event, held in partnership with the Philippine Business for the Environment, to celebrate Philippine Environment Month. They turned over recyclable materials like paper, cardboard, plastic products, empty ink toner cartridges, and obsolete/broken electronic devices to accredited recyclers.

To encourage the practice of choosing earth-friendly products and items, Smart organized a week-long bazaar, which enabled employees to buy eco-friendly products that included organic rice, fruits and vegetables, veggie chips, “green” mobile phone chargers, and organic bath and beauty products.

Cycling Over Driving
Smart teamed up with the Firefly Brigade to conduct a bike clinic that aims to promote cycling as an alternative mode of transportation. Those interested in switching to cycling as a mode of transportation in the metro learned information like basic non-motorized transportation, basic bike maintenance, bike commuting skills, and safe urban cycling practices.

Waste Segregation
Smart’s Administration and Materials Management Group-VisMin is implementing waste segregation at the Mabolo office in Cebu to encourage eco-friendly practices at the office.

River Cleanup
In Mindanao, employees participated in a Cagayan de Oro river cleanup and a fun run aimed at raising funds for the river’s maintenance, both organized by the First Rafting Adventure.

Smart’s activities for the Philippine Environment Month is part of its commitment to pursue and support earth-friendly initiatives including the 10 Million Movement launched by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources and the Earth Day Network Philippines, Inc. earlier this year. Everyone is encouraged to commit to an earth-friendly act by logging on at the Smart-sponsored 10 Million Movement website (www.10mm.ph).