Metal Toad Makes an Impact With the EcoChallenge
How Toads are rising to meet the Northwest Earth Institute’s October EcoChallenge
Metal Toad believes technology should make the world a better place—and that how teams work is as important as what they build. That’s why the company is participating in the Northwest Earth Institute’s October EcoChallenge.
This 21-day sustainability program asks participants to engage in and track a host of ecologically sound practices. Teams set goals, share their progress online, and earn points toward prizes—making it fun and rewarding to enact small changes that have a big impact for the world.
Operations manager Lauren Shey organized the event because, as she says, “I knew that Metal Toad’s values aligned with the core elements of the EcoChallenge.” And the response from fellow employees has borne that out. “The Toads have been overwhelmingly enthusiastic and excited,” says Shey. “We started a Slack channel, we're exchanging information on recycling best practices in the Portland community, and I feel like we're championing behind a greater good.”
Fifteen Toads have thrown themselves into a slew of activities, like completing home energy audits, replacing disposable bottles and cups with reusable versions, going paperless, planting gardens, and reducing meat consumption.
In addition to their actions, the Toads have been broadening their ecological education. “I spent a day onsite at the waste water management facility in Los Angeles County,” notes CEO Joaquin Lippincott, “and I was surprised to learn how much needs to be manually taken out of the water.”
“This challenge has been both eye-opening and inspiring,” says Donna Schultz, Metal Toad’s chief marketing officer. “The fact that using cold water for laundry saves 1,600 pounds of CO2 a year just goes to show how important even seemingly small things can be.”
And the challenge goes beyond individual actions—Toads are helping the office be more eco-friendly, too. “Not all products have easy ways to be recycled,” notes software engineer Meghane Hardin. So she organized an office recycling drive, which included installing a recycling collection center for batteries, electronics, and other difficult-to-recycle items. So far this month, Toad actions have collectively saved 84 pounds of CO2 and 120 gallons of water.
The EcoChallenge represents one way that Metal Toad lives its values. And the fact that Daimler, one of Metal Toad’s biggest clients, is a supporting sponsor of the event further solidifies the import of this challenge to the ethos of the company. As Lippincott says, “Metal Toad has always been about doing great work that leads to a better world. Doing this challenge as a company builds camaraderie and helps reinforce our shared values of help and respect—for each other, our clients, and our planet.”