Environmental, cultural and social stewardship are not just compatible with business success – they are essential to it.
At IEG, we strive to contribute our technical expertise and resources to help improve ecological, cultural, and social wellbeing through donations and volunteer efforts.
IEG has created an annual Soil Science Scholarship totalling $2,000 for outstanding third or fourth year undergraduate students or graduate students in the Faculty of Land and Food Systems studying or researching land rehabilitation in Soil Science. A number of IEG staff are alumni of the Faculty of Land and Food Systems at the University of British Columbia, so we are glad to be able to give back in this way. Preference for scholarship recipients is given to Indigenous and female students. The scholarships are made on the recommendation of the Faculty of Land and Food Systems and, in the case of a graduate student, in consultation with the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies. The first IEG Soil Science Award was awarded for the 2020/2021 winter session.
Congratulations to Sasha Pollet, for being the 2023 IEG Soil Science Scholarship recipient!
Sasha is a PhD Candidate in Soil Science and has done research in Belgium, France, Mexico and Canada. Through her research, Sasha wants to deepen the understanding of complex soil-root-plant interactions and the role of roots in acquiring nutrients and storing carbon in the soil. In doing so, she wants to develop an integrative research approach that can be scaled up to maintain crop production while reducing the need for fertilizers and increasing soil-plant resiliency to climate change.
IEG is proud to announce that it has offset 100% of its carbon emissions! Starting in 2011, IEG has undertaken a comprehensive assessment of our corporate carbon footprint (direct emissions, purchased energy, air travel, etc.) to track our carbon footprint, to help identify areas of potential reduction, and to provide metrics for participation in carbon offsetting programs. To date, we have offset 560 tonnes of carbon and are excited to continue do our part to reduce our environmental impact through offsets and other activities. Please see below for our annual usage of CO2, and where we purchased our offsets from:
2012 – this was IEG’s base carbon footprint analysis year. The analysis indicated that IEG total emissions were 64.3 tonnes of CO2. IEG purchased carbon credits through the Cowichan Valley’s Community Carbon Marketplace (CCM). The CCM directs offsetting dollars back to the communities where they originate and monetizes locally-generated carbon credits, building community resilience.
2013 – 67.7 tonnes of CO2 were offset through the CCM.
2014 – 52.74 tonnes of CO2 were offset through the CCM.
2015 – 64.36 tonnes of CO2 were offset through the CCM.
2016 – 44.7 tonnes of CO2 were offset through the CCM.
2017 – this year IEG did not do a carbon footprint analysis. Instead we retrospectively purchased 79.4 tonnes of CO2 (based on the 2019 when we had a significantly bigger team and therefore a larger carbon footprint). Our CO2 was offset through the purchase of carbon credits with the Bonneville Environmental Foundation (BEF). Through BEF we purchased offsets with the Kasigau REDD+ Project. Our purchase helps to prevent the destruction of these forests by providing sustainable economic alternatives to rural communities. The project now benefits over 100,000 rural Kenyans, through the distribution of carbon revenue, providing a low-carbon development pathway for the project area’s rural communities. Job creation is the core conservation strategy. Additionally, the project has created regional development of education, water access, women’s empowerment and small enterprise business opportunities, while agricultural intensification methods stop slash and burn and enhance food security. This video provides more information about the project.
2018 – similar to last year, we did not do a carbon footprint analysis and instead we retrospectively purchased 79.4 tonnes of CO2 with BEF. Through BEF, we purchased offsets from wind projects from across the United States. The renewable energy created by wind farms displaces the carbon emissions from traditional energy sources such as coal and natural gas.
2019 – based on our carbon footprint analysis, 79.4 tonnes of CO2 were offset through BEF. We purchased offsets with the Doe Mountain Forestry Offset Project which is located on more than 8,000 acres of mixed hardwoods in northeast Tennessee. It provides regular income stream for the recreation area’s trail and infrastructure improvements while conserving Doe Mountain’s visually stunning landscape for future generations. Prior to 2017, this land had no protections in place until the Doe Mountain Recreation Authority Board voted unanimously to increase the Doe Mountain forest carbon storage above the baseline level over a 40-year period, protecting the land from alternative scenarios such as subdivision and development or timber harvesting.
2020 – we purchased two categories of offsets for this year, including carbon offsets, and renewable energy certificates (RECs).
Carbon offsets: 29 tonnes of CO2 were offset through the Bonneville Environmental Foundation (BEF). The following two projects were supported:
Blandin Forestry, in Minnesota – “Using Smart Forestry practices, Blandin Forestry project maintains the diversity of natural forest communities by reducing harvest impacts as well as mitigating climate change. These practices promote ecologically-sustainable production in a manner that is compatible with managing water quality and natural habitats for fish, wildlife, and plant-life to ensure the vitality of the forests.”
Agrocortex REDD Project, in Brazil – “Located in the heart of some of the most threatened forests on the planet and an important biodiversity corridor that connects the Andes to the Amazon, this project was the winner of the best Carbon Offsetting Project of 2020 in the Environmental Finances Voluntary Carbon Awards. In addition to being a safe haven for over 400 species of birds, this project also generates positive social and economic impacts in one of the poorest areas of Brazil.”
RECs: 23 RECs were purchased through the BEF. The following two projects were supported:
Lime Wind Project, in Oregon – “This 3 MW wind project near Baker City, Oregon uses 12 refurbished Mitsubishi wind turbines, each generating up to 250 kilowatts of renewable energy.”
Green Meadow Solar, in Montana – “Outside of Helena, Montana, this solar project contains ground mount, single tracker PV’s capable of producing enough energy to power 396 Montana homes.”
2021 – awaiting results of IEG’s carbon footprint analysis.