What if You Only Worked 0.3% of the Year?
World Ocean Day and Earth Day are just single days out of 365 that people are encouraged to care about making an impact. Caring about improvement .3% of the time isn’t going to cause ongoing progress. In the same way, focusing on business improvement one day a year isn’t going to fix everything that is inhibiting your business growth. Progression should be a continuous, unanimous goal to provide real, productive results.
Explosions Lead to Action but Not Change
The Cuyahoga River is famous for having started an environmental movement around protecting waters. This river in Northeast Ohio combusted in 1969 because it was so polluted. People recognized that changes needed to be made and asked for help. The United States Government put the Clean Water Act into place in 1972. This pivotal time aimed the United States in a better direction. Unfortunately, that didn’t correct the course of the path on which the world’s oceans were headed. Although people were acting individually in a more responsible manner, impactful improvement still lacked the catalyst it required.
Pollution is the greatest issue plaguing the world’s oceans. Pesticides, oil, sewage, plastics, and other solids are common pollutants that reach the ocean. These wind up at the depths of the ocean where they’re consumed by fish. From there, the effects move up the food chain until it makes it to your own plate. If eating chemicals isn’t bad enough, now you can drink them too! Scientists have found more than 70 types of pesticides in our main source for water.
Pollutants in the ocean block the sunlight causing algae to grow. Algae depletes the oxygen in the water and causes dead zones. Dead zones are exactly what they sound like- areas where nothing can live. Today, there are an estimated 400 dead zones in the world.
The largest effect of pollution? The Great Pacific garbage patch, or “Garbage Island” as it’s often called. Scientists estimate it to be huge. It’s likely anywhere from the size of Texas to twice the size of the continental United States. Not as publicized, there are also islands of trash found in the Atlantic Ocean and the Sargasso Sea.
If you spend 364 days polluting and just one working to clean it up, you won’t make it to neutral grounds, let alone positive. Pollution in the sea is just like wasted marketing dollars or a bad reputation. Once it’s happened, the damage is done. There is only so much improvement that can come from damage control. Improving the processes so the damage doesn’t happen in the first place will see far more success.
Ban on Microbeads
Your toothpaste, face scrub, and body wash all probably contain microbeads. These tiny beads are great for exfoliating! Unfortunately, their plastic composition makes them undesirable to consume and difficult to filter. The beads are so small, they fit through almost all filters. Because of this, they’re able to reach water and fish eat them thinking they’re eggs. Additionally, they easily make their way into drinking water.
A 2015 study estimated that, nationwide, 808 billion beads are washed down drains daily. Thus, in December of 2015, President Obama signed a law banning these. By 2017, microbeads will be entirely prohibited.
Just because something is out of sight, doesn’t mean it should be out of mind. Just because you can’t see the microbeads doesn’t mean they aren’t there. Similarly, if you can’t see issues within your own business, that doesn’t mean they aren’t there.
How You Can Help
It isn’t difficult to make a large difference. You should dispose of all toxic liquids in the proper manner. This means not dumping them down the drain or throwing them out. Recycle paper, plastic, glass, and all other recyclables. Limit the trash that reaches the ocean further by organizing community clean-ups and not littering. Spread the word and help the environment any other way that you can, like biking to work and using less energy.
LeewardBA helps customers reduce energy demand by 97% just by switching over from desktops. Learn more!
Like the ocean, businesses are interconnected parts of our community. Failing to spend time working on your own business improvements impacts everyone in the ecosystem. LeewardBA would like you to reflect on your impact within your community this World Ocean Day. Are you making changes to improve and to help others make our communities stronger?
In honor of World Ocean day, LeewardBA is offering free business improvement workshops to help our community improve together. Contact us via e-mail or call 262.358.4116 for more information.