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How to be More Sustainable with Actions Big & Small

Publish Date: April 22nd, 2020

Paper or plastic? Bike or drive? Meat or veggies? Folks at Namaste Solar are always trying to figure out how to be more sustainable, both at work and at home. Becoming more sustainable can feel overwhelming at first, but you can make significant impacts if you take it one step at a time.

For ideas and inspiration, we asked people at Namaste Solar to share one small way and one big way that they have tried to be more sustainable in their lives. You can be part of collective change with your actions, big and small. Just take it one step at a time and start where you can.

Anna Perry, Residential Sales & Design Specialist

  • One Small Thing: “I have just started planting my yearly backyard garden! It is very fulfilling to grow your own veggies and helps me feel sustainable with every bite!”
  • One Big Thing: “Thanks to Namaste Solar’s perfect location next to a bike path, I am able to bike to work every day! I feel so lucky that I have the opportunity to bike to work, as I feel that I am helping the environment in a big way. I benefit as well, as I get to spend more time outside in the nature that I love. Every little bit helps, and getting rid of one car’s emissions feels like an accomplishment!"

IMG_8931-1Anna on her two-wheeled commuter.

Rick Coen, Co-Owner, Commercial Technical Designer

  • One Small Thing: “Realizing the impact beef has on climate change and the environment in general, we’ve almost entirely cut it out of diet. We’re mostly vegetarian, and while it has much to do with the environment, it also has to do with social justice and the distribution of resources.”
  • One Big Thing: “This past December I put my money where my mouth is and purchased a plug-in hybrid. I've driven it 3000 miles since then, commuting to work from Fort Collins, and I've filled the gas tank twice. I especially love charging it at home and at the Denver office where there's solar on the roof!”

Benjamin Dermer, Commercial Technical Designer

  • One Small Thing: “I am nuts about programming my thermostat for max efficiency based on my daily schedule. Also, awareness that a little discomfort is okay - I can always put a sweater on rather than turn the heat up. Lights off, too! Every second of light in an unoccupied room is a little chunk of coal burning in my mind.”
  • One Big Thing: “My biggest action is the dedication of my career to renewable energy. I will never work in another industry and hope to maximize my contribution to CO2 offset.”

Geri Mitchell-Brown, Co-Owner, Director of Employee Experience

  • One Small Thing: After researching the cost and impact of carbon offsets for Namaste Solar, I realized it would feel good to purchase offsets for my personal life. After a trip to Florida with my daughter in December, I bought offsets from fellow B Corp Native Energy to cover our flight and vehicle miles.
  • One Big Thing: Six months ago, I was able to start turning sunshine into electricity on my home. I’ve enjoyed seeing the kilowatt hours add up in the SolarEdge app, and I’m excited to see the kWh soar with upcoming longer days of sunshine!

group photo-2Namasté Solar crew and staff helping install Geri's solar panel system.

Mira Totaro-Bloom, Sales Support Specialist

  • One Small Thing: “The small ways that I practice sustainability are numerous: I recycle everything possible, compost food scraps and waste, and I turn the sink off while scrubbing hands and teeth. I have signed up for paperless billing with all of our household mail and am working on getting rid of junk mail by ‘unsubscribing’ to paper ads and junk.”
  • One Big Thing: “The big way that I try to bring sustainability into my actions is with travel. I try to ride my bike or carpool into work and back when possible, or work from home to eliminate burning gas every day. I walk or ride my bike to meet up with friends as often as I can.”

Kyle Pegon, Co-Owner, Residential Operations Manager – New Home Construction

  • One Small Thing: “I was thrilled when Namaste Solar announced we’d be setting up collection points in both our offices for snack wrappers and other “hard to recycle” food packaging materials. Since then, I’ve been bringing in my wrappers from home to ensure they’re recycled. While I’m still striving to limit the waste created in my everyday life, it’s such a thrill to see one more item added to the recyclable list!”
  • One Big Thing: “About three years ago, I decided to seriously evaluate the number of days I “needed” to be driving to work. Between my bike, a Namaste Solar provided Eco Pass, and a roommate who also worked at Namaste Solar, I knew my time commuting in a single occupancy vehicle should be limited.  Looking back three years later, I’ve cut my single occupancy commute days down to one or two days a week.”

If you’d like a road map to start your sustainability journey, we recommend REI’s Opt to Act Plan from last year. They offer a list of 52 actions you can take to be more sustainable through everyday actions. Get weekly calendar notifications or download the checklist to participate. It’s a great resource to learn how to be more sustainable and to set an action plan to make it happen.