Portrait - Initiatives
EcoLogicals: A community for environmental protection
by Theresa Knothe, Roche
Everyone can make a contribution to greater sustainability. It's an easy sentence to say,but given the major environmental problems we are currently facing - climate change, species extinction, plastic waste - you might ask yourself: what can I, as an individual, do to make a difference?
Offering employees a platform
Two Roche employees from the Environmental Protection Department were not willing to let go of this question. "We kept coming into contact with employees who cared about sustainability but didn't know how they could get involved to make Roche more sustainable," says Sue Rauss, Team Lead in the Safety, Health and Environmental Protection department, Roche Basel/Kaiseraugst.
That's why Sue, together with her then work colleague Martin Studer, decided to found the EcoLogicals. The EcoLogicals are a bottom-up community that enables employees of Roche Basel/Kaiseraugst to actively engage in environmental protection. Here they can exchange ideas with like-minded people, network with people with the required know-how and implement concrete projects in the area of sustainability. Many small deeds become one big deed and the positive impact is immediately tangible.
EcoLogicals: Inclusive and diverse
Every one of the more than 11,000 employees at the Basel/Kaiseraugst site can take part in the EcoLogicals - regardless of the department in which they work or the position they hold in the company. Members range from interns to line managers. We also benefit from the cultural diversity (over 100 nationalities at the site) and professional as well as private backgrounds of the employees. For example, a staff member who is a beekeeper in her spare time has started the Bee Kind project, which aims to support native wild bees.
Urban gardening on the Roche site
Local environmental projects are at the heart of the EcoLogicals. They are important because they make our contribution to greater sustainability visible and tangible. You can even take a little walk through one of our projects. The Urban Gardening project team has worked to bring a piece of nature to our site in Basel. Thanks to this initiative, we are now growing tomatoes, beetroot and potatoes in a small area of our Basel site. The fruit and vegetables are then delivered by bicycle trailer to one of our on-site restaurants, where they find their way onto the table. The project is intended to illustrate the food cycle, from seed to compost, and to raise awareness among staff and visitors.
From 2 to 2000
The Bee Kind and the Urban Gardening project are just two examples of many other initiatives that run under the EcoLogicals umbrella at the site. There are other project teams on topics such as air travel, food and bird conservation.
Inspired by our community in Basel and Kaiseraugst, other bottom-up communities have been launched at Roche sites around the world, e.g. at Roche in Germany and England.
What started with two motivated employees is now a community of over 2000 people. Everyone can make a contribution to more sustainability. With the EcoLogicals, we give our employees the opportunity to put this sentence into practice.