Genentech: Sustainability in Their Genes
The Green Genes team at Genentech is 5 years in the making and has nearly 500 members, mostly located in South San Francisco. With their newly implemented Sustainability Suggestion website, the team is harvesting ideas from the entire company to capture ideas that may improve Genentech's environmental performance.
The team will then do research to prioritize the ideas, and facilitate the process to link the viable ideas to internal environmental programs. Key activities include: projects that work to reduce energy and water consumption and waste generation, community service events like beach clean-ups, a Kill-a-Watt Lending program that allows employees to measure their power consumption, educational and fun monthly speaker series and regular movie nights focusing on sustainable practices.
Members of the team said their "Eco Ho-Ho," a yearly green fair, has been a successful event that attracts employees and their guests to learn about sustainable practices and the company's efforts.
Michael Brodie, the chairperson of the Green Genes Energy team, says "If, by our example, we can inspire just a small change in behavior from the average employee -- turning off lights in their own offices or conference rooms, or printing double-sided -- we'll raise awareness to the point where good things start to be done because it's expected."
Building a Sustainable Community at BJG
BJG Architecture and Engineering's Green Team formed a year ago and has become more formal in the last 6 months. They have 9 members, which for a 45 person company means 20 percent participation. Members participate from all their sites: Las Vegas, Reno and Pleasanton.
BJG's president sits on the Green Team and is an active participant. Key internal activities include: bike to work week, revamping purchasing processes to focus on recycled goods, optimize use of resources and reducing waste (ex. double sided printing), and developing fun internal competitions to measure and become more aware of employee recycling efforts (best recycling team gets free BBQ).
The BJG Green Team has also developed initiatives to help their clients be more sustainable. Some of BJG's client-oriented green initiatives include developing a design process for LEED certification, specifying green building materials, and educating clients about sustainable building practices.
Teresa Kulesza, a Green Team member and a Vice President at BJG, has a long list of goals for the future: “Our green team has a long list of ideas: We are ramping up our measurement efforts from weighing trash to reviewing utility bills to measure our carbon footprint. We are planning in house movie times to watch inspiring as well as educational videos on sustainability issues."