Living in a Better World: 3 Ways Citi Green Teams Are Making This Possible
By Ferenc Benda and Raoul Blignaut, Citi South Africa Green Team Members May 03, 2013 12:14 PM
Citi Green Teams are communities of Citi volunteers in offices across the globe who work together to share ideas, resources and best practices on sustainability. We then focus on implementing these green solutions into the Citi office environment, our homes and if possible, the broader community in which we live in. Our motto is "One Citi... One Planet" and we are committed to creating a sustainable future through the 3 "R's"- Reduce, Re-use, Recycle.
Below are three ways that the Citi Green Team in South Africa works toward the Citi motto and demonstrates commitment to sustainability:
1) We are a voluntary community - We think it is important that our members feel they part of a team, that we can make a difference and that the community is open to sharing ideas and driving the initiatives forward based on each person's unique skills and ability. It is also key that members are free to voluntarily contribute based on their own time and resources. Finally, we endeavor to make these initiatives fun and rewarding, knowing at the same time we are a part of the solution to the challenges we face. Our goal is to leave Citi and our planet greener and more sustainable for present and future generations.
2) We are action oriented - We think it is vital to talk about going green, as well a stake action on our ideas. Our key focus has been working with various Citi South Africa/Citi EMEA and even global divisions to activate sustainable ideas and improve existing initiatives. We believe this makes a big impact. We then apply the successes we achieve in the office to our homes and communities, to enable further sustainability through changed behaviors and new habits. The team motto is: every small step matters; we have to start taking action today. Going green is not a project, but a culture and habit we have to practice daily. We must also teach our children to do the same.
3) We focus on the 3 "R's"- Reduce, Re-use, Recycle - The green team in South Africa has achieved significant energy savings (35 %, or 2.200.000 kwh per annum) in power consumption using smart office technology e.g. movement sensors, LED globes, or even as simple as getting staff to switch off appliances not in use. We also save water through implementing tap aerators (about 80% reduction) and save paper through the Print Wise campaign (200.000 sheets of A4 printing paper save p.a.). We set up a facility at Citi South Africa to collect the recyclable waste separately both from the office and staff homes (40.000 kg waste recycled in 2012). We also have community initiatives to donate or plant trees in our schools and communities.
What we do today will profoundly affect future generations. The Citi South Africa Green Team aims to be a part of a sustainable future for the planet, the economy and society. If the environment as a whole is sustainable, it will be enable all of us to grow and thrive into the future.