Our world is changing, as the only constant thing ever exist in this universe is the change itself. But we are not talking about philosophy here, rather we are talking about our climate and environment that has not been the same.
The condition of our environment got worse because of our ignorance for decades. However, since we have learned about what happened to our planet better, we have decided wisely about what should be done to prevent further destruction.
Some ‘dirty’ companies, working in energy and resource extraction sector, also realized about their connection to nature’s destruction. That’s why, some of them decided to do good deeds to repay for their mistakes.
Here are some examples of ‘dirty’ companies who try to repay for their past mistakes by contributing to the planet.
Using Blockchain To Track Cobalt
It might not about restore the nature itself, but this is a good deed worth mentioning. Blockchain, the word that you often relate with cryptocurrency, can also be used to track illegal slavery and child labor like what is currently done in Democratic Republic of Congo.
The use of blockchain itself is as a tracker for cobalt sourced from artisanal mines. In Democratic Republic of Congo, cobalt is mined artisanal way and often include modern slavery or child labor, because of lawlessness there.
To prevent such kind of product entering the market, a group of companies are using blockchain as cobalt tracker from the mines to the factories. This way, there will be no dirty work included in the middle of the process.
This innovation is supported even by tech giants such as Apple and Samsung. The reason is, cobalt mined from Democratic Republic of Congo is often used in electronic devices including the ones produced by those big players.
“The demand to make cobalt more sustainable is going to continue growing, meaning there is a will to find a solution and blockchain will be part of that,” as a source stated. Now, you can be more assured that your electronic devices are less ‘lawless’.
Desert Restoration with Solar Energy
China is a huge player in renewable energy production, especially in term of solar panel and wind turbine. However, not every single company in China has pledged to become more sustainable or even go 100% renewable.
The story is a bit different with Elion, since the company that can be considered as one of the biggest ones in the country has pledged to go fully renewable by the next decade. Not only that, the company is also included in eco-restoration of Kubuqi desert.
The eco-restoration project includes Inner Mongolia and other ecologically fragile areas along the Silk Road Economic Belt. This project is supported by United Nations’ Environment, in a mission to prevent further desertification.
In this project, Elion works by setting up solar panels in the deserting area. in addition to that, the company also works with locals to plant medicinal sand plants there. This way, not only it can prevent the desertification, it can help locals with energy generation.
Furthermore, the company also set ecotourism and animal husbandry initiatives. Up to nowadays, Elion’s work in this project has helped to restore 650.000 hectares of land by setting up those ecological microclimate works.
Replanting Mined Area
Another story came from Australia, where a mining company Alcoa has pledged to meet its sustainability targets. The mission was carried out in two bauxite mines in Peel and South West WA, and is going to be done by planting around 400,000 trees there.
The 400,000 seeds are native seedlings, and will be planted in the area around June and July. Susanna Beech, the company’s environmental manager said that “Huntly and Willowdale mines were on track to meet Alcoa’s global sustainability target of achieving a one-to-one ratio of rehabilitation to areas cleared for active mining over the next 10 years.”
“Our aim is to lessen the impact of our mining operations in the jarrah forest by progressively rehabilitating mined areas. We work hard to re-establish a jarrah forest ecosystem that is self-sustaining and consistent with pre-existing land uses of the forest – including highly valued areas for recreation and conservation,” she said in a statement.
In areas where the company once mined bauxite, similar program has been done and it showed positive effect. That’s why, for future prospects, Alcoa is confident that they can get the same result. “We are very proud of the fact that self-sustaining forest ecosystems now thrive in areas where Alcoa once mined bauxite,” said Susanna.
“Alcoa’s leading-practice rehabilitation process, which has been developed and continually improved over decades, involves landscaping, pre-ripping, soil return, fauna habitat returns, final contour ripping and seeding, recalcitrant planting, fertilizing and ongoing monitoring and management,” she continued.
It Is About the Demand
You might think that such kind of news is something new, rather strange, and unusual. However, it should not be this way, and this condition is not right. The right thing is, every single company has its own plan to repay the earth for the impacts they have caused.
We have the power to demand for that, just like what Morningstar reported. In the report, even big players like Shell, Repsol and Total are planning to reduce their greenhouse gas intensity. The reason is because more and more of their customers are asking for greener practice.
“The bigger risk is likely to be investors voting with their feet well before there is global governmental consensus on regulation, which is probably what integrated oil management teams believe is the more immediate threat,” the report said.
Morningstar also looked at other energy companies and how they would respond to similar problem. “The remainder of companies are focused solely on their own operations, which is positive, but any reduction will have little effect on global emissions,” the report continued.
Even though it may sound contradictory, but the company’s trajectory toward (slightly) greener steps is a proof that more people are aware about their ‘dirty’ business. Yes, the impact is low, but if maintained it can be a ticking time bomb for those companies. We have the power, and it is our choice whether we would use it or not.