Happy Environment Week from TELUS!

It’s Environment Week and this year we have a lot to celebrate! Not only have we been recognized for some prestigious awards, but we’ve also advanced our leadership in sustainability with the launch of our National Sustainability Council (NSC).

The Council, made up of 15 TELUS team members from across the country, will support our vision to create a healthier, more sustainable future by:

  • Cultivating our culture of sustainability through leadership and innovation;
  • Connecting and empowering team members, customers and partners through our sustainability initiatives;
  • Collaborating to align business objectives with sustainability goals; and
  • Celebrating our successes while continuously learning and improving.
National Sustainability Council

I’ve been a TELUS team member for nearly ten years and since the day I started I’ve seen sustainability practices continuously ingrained into our culture. I’ve always been passionate about making a difference in the world. At home, I’m a father, which means I strive to set a good example for my daughter. I teach her my sustainable principles and basic practices because I know the world in which she’s growing is her true inheritance. However, it wasn’t until I became the inaugural Chair of the TELUS NSC that I truly understood the depths to which I could make a difference.

This realization prompted me to take a deeper look inward as a global citizen. What was I doing well? Where could I improve? What did I discover?

It was easier to recognize my virtues: I reduce, reuse and recycle — I sort everything at home and my daughter helps. We conserve heat, water and electricity by putting on sweaters instead of turning up the heat, turning off the faucet while brushing our teeth, and turning off lights when we leave a room. Thankfully we live in a country where being socially responsible can equal some pretty simple tasks…it can even be profitable. But where was I lacking?

It was tough “owning up” but after a good hard look, it was staring me right in the face: bottled water. Despite living in the Lower Mainland of beautiful British Columbia where we have some of the best drinking water in the world, I have a penchant for bottled water. Be it mineral, ozonated or sparkling – when I’m away from my prized filtration systems at home or filtered water at my office, I turn to bottled water. I recycle the bottle but that’s a small consolation.

The bigger realization was that although I aim to live a sustainable life, there’s room for improvement.

We asked Council members to “own up” about their sustainability virtues and vices. The responses were revealing. Here is a visual representation: green indicates virtues we encourage others to emulate; orange indicates vices we aim to improve:15_00373_02EN_WordCloud-REV

We’re not perfect; we’ve got a ways to go – whether working at the office or at home, but at least now we know where to start. We’d love to hear your sustainable virtues and vices. Take a minute to comment above or tweet us @TELUS using the hashtag #EnviroWeek  and tell us how you measure up.

And if you need some inspiration; check out our 2014 Sustainability Report.