Every Hour is Earth Hour at GNI
March 25, 2022
How we're leading the industry in greening our operations
The building sector is responsible for 13% of greenhouse gas emissions globally. That’s why all of us at GNI have made it our responsibility to reduce our carbon footprint – and do as much as we can to take better care of the planet.
GNI’s mission is to help homeowners, builders and general contractors build safe, energy-efficient communities. That’s why we’re leading the industry in the use of sustainable materials like cellulose and hemp – and in doing everything we can to shrink our own operational footprint.
“Two of our core values are to lead the way and do the right thing,” says Rick Bartel, Operations Leader at GNI. “These green measures are simply the right things for corporations to do. So we’re doing them – and hopefully inspiring other companies to take similar steps.”
9 green things GNI is doing right now
- Reducing fuel usage. With a truck fleet as large as ours, the single largest impact we can make in our operations is to cut down fuel consumption. To reduce idling, we’re exploring programming that shuts off engines automatically when vehicles are not in motion. We’re also investigating ways of getting heat to vehicles in cold weather... without running the engine.
- Electrification of our fleet. We're exploring the use of electric vehicles for our sales team and crew. This initiative is currently in early stages but will accelerate as marketplace supply meets demand and manufacturers continue to invest in R&D.
- New electric car charging station. The new station at head office encourages office staff and visitors to think about electric cars, adds to the local charging network, and makes us more accessible to customers, suppliers and anyone else with a green vehicle.
- Cleaning up hazardous waste – responsibly. We’ve cleaned up our facilities, amalgamated the waste materials from all our locations, and disposed of everything properly. A clear waste management process ensures waste doesn’t start collecting again.
- First-in, first-out (FIFO) inventory management. With strict regulation of how products are utilized in the construction industry, when products arrive at our facilities, additional efforts are being placed on material handling to ensure that all materials are being used before their expiry date. This helps to limit the environmental impact of waste materials and ensures that our clients always get the best product.
- Recycling more materials. Over the past 12 months, we’ve recycled over 62.96 metric tons of steel and plastic. Recently, through collaboration with our manufacturers, we’ve identified additional products that can be recycled and added then to our stream. This year, our recycling program is being expanded to include 3 streams: steel, cardboard and plastics, with recycling stations rolled out across all our branches.
- Going paperless. From health assessments to driver logs, we’ve transformed many of our paper-based processes to digital and continue to add initiatives to these programs.
- Sustainable insulation options. GNI is providing customers with greener options for materials, such as hemp insulation and will continue to look for innovative insulation materials.
- More energy-efficient offices. An energy retrofit across our operations resulted in efficient lighting with LEDs and motion detectors, and an upgraded office recycling program. We’re also reducing waste with water filtration and coffee stations (with really good coffee) and reusable cups, cutting down on plastic and paper waste.
All of these initiatives (even the small ones) make a dent in our carbon footprint. But more importantly, they show everyone that they can make a difference, too – and that together, our efforts can shape a better future.
Earth Hour is March 26, 8:30 - 9:30pm
How will you celebrate? From dinner by candlelight to a walk under the night sky, here are 7 meaningful ways you can spend the hour.