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Today is Earth Day - a movement started 51 years ago to raise awareness of the issues our planet faces and drive action that supports it by helping prevent further damage (www.earthday.org). And while I'm not a climate change supporter as such, bearing in mind that the planet has experienced extreme weather cycles for eons, I’ve long been concerned that the damage we're inflicting is exacerbating our situation. The sooner we all change, the better.
As you may know, John and I also work in the kitchens, bathrooms & bedrooms sector, where we’ve witnessed over the past 10 years or so a growing movement amongst our industry colleagues to promote water-saving and energy-saving products. I’ve said for years that one day the world will be fighting over its water supplies – and with the programs being promoted today by our global leaders to reduce our carbon emissions, energy’s going to become very expensive so we’ll need to find ways to use a lot less of it. One of our colleagues, Yvonne Orgill, now heads up the Unified Water Label Association and although she was specifically addressing her comments (below) to the KBB sector during a recent conference, I couldn’t help but notice the parallels and wondered whether we in the cleaning sector are doing all we can to conserve water and energy. Yvonne said:
"We believe everyone has a part to play in making responsible water-saving choices. If those involved in designing, manufacturing, selling, installing and purchasing water-using products, all work together to help each other, and consumers understand the issues around water scarcity, then we can drive home the message that for the sake of the planet we must use water wisely.” Other speakers and delegates discussed the need to work together and be creative in meeting this challenge, with the consensus being that it’s necessary to be bold if we’re to help our customers understand the impact of their consumption, and nudge them towards positive behaviour change.
The cleaning industry’s long been notorious for not pushing for change quite hard enough and I feel we could be doing more to market products that help conserve water and energy whilst protecting our planet in other ways. I know companies are manufacturing these products, but in my book, we all need to take responsibility for pushing their use. With our sector having risen through the ranks and now being seen as one of the most important there is, surely it’s the perfect time to take the lead and promote what’s right rather than what’s easiest to sell.
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22nd April 2021