In the fight against climate change, a Toronto company is proving actions speak louder than words.
Nominated for a Canadian Environment Award, Zerofootprint helps businesses manage and reduce their carbon emissions while simultaneously giving average Canadians the tools and knowledge to reduce their own carbon footprint.
Company founder Ron Dembo says Zerofootprint has always been about making change happen rather than just playing lip service to environmental issues.
“If you want to do social change, creating awareness is not the way to go. It’s important but not sufficient for change. Social change comes by setting examples and doing things,” Dembo said.
The company’s newest project, run in tandem with the City of Toronto and co-signed with Mayor David Miller, is to upgrade and renew the 2,000 residential towers sprouting within the city to reduce the amount of carbon needed to run them. The towers, many of which are grossly energy-inefficient, currently consume 20 per cent of the city’s residential power. Zerofootprint expects its renewal program to make the buildings 50 per cent more energy-efficient and help rejuvenate the environment directly surrounding each tower.
For average consumers interested in learning about how to shrink their own carbon footprint, www.zerofootprint.net lets people create a Personal Carbon Manager account, which tracks their carbon footprints. Zerofootprint developed a similar site for manufacturing giant Unilever that lets people calculate and reduce their water consumption.
“We empower people by showing how small changes can make a big difference,” said Deborah Kaplan, Zerofootprint’s executive director.