How contributions to air, water and land pollution.

How does one determine that a certain
school or organization is eco-friendly? According to Holzer (2017), environmental friendliness or commonly referred to as
“eco-friendliness”, literally means “earth-friendly or not harmful”.  This refers to
products that contribute to practices that help conserve resources like water
and energy.  Eco-friendly products also
prevent contributions to air, water and land pollution.  You can engage in eco-friendly habits or
practices by being more conscious of how you use resources. For example,
shutting off the lights when they are not in use or simply cycling instead of
using a station wagon when going somewhere not that far or just by simply
following the three (3) Rs, REDUCE, REUSE, and RECYCLE are good practices of becoming
an eco-friendly person.  Further, “eco” is short for ecology, the science
that deals with the study of relationships between living things, and with
their environment.  “Friendly” implies
beneficial or mutual, or at least not harmful. It should follow that the term
eco-friendly, when added to services or products, indicates positive, or at
least not harmful, effects on living things. 
Unfortunately, there is no rule on the use of the term, which restricts
its credibility.  However, it can be
credible when the word is accompanied by evidence of environmental performance
that it has any empirical meaning, and can be used as a legitimate guide for
consumers, especially when weighing up the environmental preferred of products
or services.

Measuring the environmental
friendliness of a product or an organization is a complicated yet important
process.  Measuring environmental
performance requires tests by an officially sanctioned or qualified body,
against factual benchmarks defined and published by an independent party.  When these are passed or attained, the
organization may issue an ecolabel.  Even
then, the label can have varying degrees of robustness.  Thus, if one is skeptic about using a product because
of the thought of it not being eco-friendly, look for its ecolabel.

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            Some organizations claim to be
environmentally friendly whilst that not being the case at all.  Companies sometimes label their products
“eco-friendly” or “environmentally friendly” without them
truly being so.  This is called
“greenwashing”. Marketing campaigns perpetuate this practice, aimed
at helping companies increase their product sales by appealing to ecologically
conscious buyers as said by Holzer (2017).
 Self-proclamations should not be trusted
immediately as it is skeptical without any proof to support that claim in the first
place.  To
avoid purchasing “greenwashed” products, look for products approved
by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Energy Star program or an
ecologically conscious consumer-advocacy group such as the Green Good
Housekeeping Seal says Holzer (2017).  There are some qualifications in order to be
able to call a product “eco-friendly”.  Making a truly eco-friendly product keeps both
environmental and human safety in mind.  At
the least, the product should not be poisonous. 
Another eco-friendly characteristic Another eco-friendly characteristic includes
usage of organic or renewable resources which will not affect the environment.  These resources or materials are procured
without any chemical interventions.  Products
made from recycled materials contain glass, wood, metal or plastic reclaimed
from waste products and made into something new.  Biodegradable products break down through
natural decomposition, which is less taxing on landfills and the ecosystem as a
whole.  With this, one can now
differentiate an eco-friendly product from the rest. If it does not fit in the
aforementioned characteristics then it is not friendly to the environment.

            Implementing
environmental friendliness has many feats. 
Smith (2016) says that you might have a better shot at living a quality
life with health if you chose to go eco-friendly.  We
believe that development comes from construction, ideas, innovation and
strategies; but how about turning all our goals and aligning it with the
environment.  It will not only benefit
you but the environment as well.  In
order to promote the factor of sustainability and to conserve nature, it is
important for us to deviate from our conventional ways of greed and
exploitation and look for a better and brighter future.  If we as individuals take the initiative
of Going Green for a change, there will be better drive for development in
the areas which are related to green energies.  Recycling is also a wonderful activity through
which we cannot waste the used material and use it over and over again, which
in terms means that we are using are resources efficiently and smartly.  To put it into simple and a realistic
scenario; millions of tons of materials is gone to waste every day, industries
omit toxic chemicals in the oceans everyday making it harder for the marine
life to live a quality life, smokes are omitted from cars and factories and
thousands of trees our cut.  We are
exploiting our own nature without bearing in mind that what will possibly
happen in the future.  However, if we take
on a different path, the things lost can be found once again.  The main
aspect of going eco-friendly is about sustainability.  Since the world is corrupted with pollution
and toxic amount of materials, making it sustainable can be a good call.  Business Queensland’s article “The Benefits
of an Environmental Friendly Business” (2017) supports this by stating that reducing
the environmental impact of your business will improve the sustainability of
your business.  Regarding the market,
less dependence on natural resources and the flexibility when situations arise
and threaten one’s business, these values can help prevent any unfortunate outcomes.  Thus, the sooner a person makes their
surroundings an environment friendly one, the better theirs and others’s lives
will be.

            There are various reasons why the environmental
friendliness of a certain organization is very important.   Smith
(2016) said that purchasing an eco-friendly product will cost you less than
buying a normal product.  It is because
materials that are used in eco-friendly products are raw materials.  Thus, these materials are easier to
manufacture and are easier to produce.   Smith (2016) also said that going eco-friendly improves your quality of life in
terms of mortality, age, diseases etc.  Therefore,
having an eco-friendly environment could save people’s lives.  According to Brannan (2014), living a life
that is to the planet is not all about recycling and reducing use of paper
products but it is also about making mindful choices that are better for the
human race as well as for the planet.  One
example of this is using a car, while so many of us are capable of walking two
blocks to McDonalds, most of us don’t.  In
a society wherein we emphasize the importance of every last-minute, we prefer
to step in to our cars and drive those two blocks to get our fried chicken or
French fries and then drive home.  Not
only is this one of the bad habits that has contributed to the incredible rates
of obesity in developed nations like the United States, but it is also a habit
that contributes to the incredible carbon footprint that we as a species are
leaving upon the Earth.  Certainly some
are more conscious in their laziness and choose to utilize hybrid and electric
cars; however, while this reduces the carbon footprint it does not reduce the
drain of an obese race on the resources of the planet.  As human beings, we have a responsibility in
maintaining our planet. 

Most business organizations encourage an
eco-friendly environment.  Weis and
Poppick (2016) said that reducing the carbon footprint of business
organizations may not be their main goal, but being eco-friendly can actually
save a big money for business organizations and would eventually improve the
quality of their workplace.  Seppala and
Cameron (2015) said that:

Although there’s an
assumption that stress and pressure push employees to perform more, better, and
faster, what cutthroat organizations fail to recognize is the hidden costs
incurred.  The reality is that health
care expenditures at high-pressure companies are nearly 50% greater than at other organizations. 
The American Psychological Association estimates that
more than $500 billion is siphoned off from the U.S. economy because of
workplace stress, and 550 million workdays are lost each year due to stress on
the job.  Sixty percent to 80% of
workplace accidents are attributed to stress, and it’s estimated that more than 80% of doctor visits are due to stress.  Workplace stress has been linked to health
problems ranging from metabolic syndrome to cardiovascular disease and
mortality.

Delmas’s study (as cited by Hewitt, 2012) said
that, green
certifications should be used by managers to increase efficiency, by
prospective employees as a sign of a better work environment, and by investors
as an indicator of good management practices. 
Previous research has already shown that sustainable business practices
can result in cost-efficiencies, but Delmas and Pekovic are the first to
explore the link to labor productivity.  Thus,
having an eco-friendly environment is related to productivity of employees and
the performance of business organizations. 

Eco-friendliness also affects smaller organizations like
schools.  Just like business
organizations, eco-friendliness affects schools in a positive way.  Most conversations regarding the performance
of students, revolve around the design of the curriculum.  The discussion revolves around which topics
to discuss during this quarter or that quarter and how do school adjust to the
curriculum.  However, the design of the
curriculum is not only what we should be thinking of.  Instead, we should also be thinking of the
environment of the school itself whether it is conducive for learning or not.  According to an article by United States
Environmental Protection Agency (2017), studies show
that one-half of United States of America’s 115,000 schools have problems
linked to indoor air quality (IAQ).  Fedrizzi
(2015) said that green technologies are the key to conducive and efficient
environment for students.  In 2010, the
Lake Mills Middle School in Wisconsin became the first LEED Platinum public
school in America, in which they use green technologies in which they use
highly efficient geothermal system for heating and cooling, and energy-sipping
lighting.  As a result, the middle school
saves $85,000 a year on energy.  Sanders
(2010), said that the school’s students, staff, and district administrators in
the middle school have reduced respiratory illnesses; and the students’
attendance improved greatly for there are fewer absences after the adaptation
of green technologies. 

Though eco friendliness seems to be very
purely advantageous, there are also some who refute claims that
eco-friendliness is beneficial to organizations.  Lake (2017) argues that though eco-friendliness
seems to be very advantageous, it is also costly.  For example, the use of solar panels can
possibly save you money on your energy bills, but they can cost thousands of pesos
to install. Energy-efficient appliances are designed to use less electricity
and water but they are often harder to avail and have a higher price tag.
Eating organic foods is another way to becoming more eco-friendly, but unless
you choose to grow your own food, you should assume to pay significantly more
for foods grown organically rather than through conventional growing methods.

According to Hamel (2010), it is very hard
to gradually switch to an eco-friendly environment especially in the business
world. Though going more eco-friendly seems to be an attractive goal to gain
goodwill and consumer support, but unless green improvements are economically
feasible, it can put a business at a competitive disadvantage.  If one company decides to obey to strict,
self-imposed pollution standards which require the installation of new
technology and workers, while another sets loose standards, the second company
will be at an advantage since they will have lower production or opportunity
costs.  Even if national standards were
imposed to force businesses to be eco-friendly, this could put them at a
competitive disadvantage with respect to foreign companies who are not required
to be an eco-friendly organization.

The same practical principles apply to
schools when they are eventually required to be an eco-friendly organization.
It will be harder for schools to adjust to a big change. Specially here in the
Philippines where implementation of laws can be very unpredictable. Schools
must be totally ready for such a big change. And of course, the government
needs to prepare a big amount of money for the schools to be more eco-friendly.

One practical example is the segregation of
wastes. Schools cannot expect a toddler to segregate his/her garbage. Thus,
knowledge regarding environmental issues and how to solve environmental
problems is a radical factor. It will be hard for younger students to cope up
with environmental practices.

However, the long-term effects of being
eco-friendly is much greater than its cost of implementation.  Schools would nurture more
environmentally-aware individuals who would care for our planet.  Thus, theoretically, in the long run, they
would be the ones who will focus their researches on saving our planet and
saving the human race itself.  It may
cost the government a big amount of money in the short-run, but the next
generations would realize how the destruction of earth has been prevented by
this generation of the 21st century.

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