Happy Birthday, Earth Day (part 2)

More than 30 AVMA staff members volunteered yesterday to get outside and help us observe the 40th anniversary of Earth Day (yes, it’s really been around that long!) by cleaning up our headquarters campus in Schaumburg, IL.

AVMA Green Team Wearing work gloves and carrying trash bags, they mucked debris out of our pond, poked their arms into shrubs to fish out trapped trash, and even cleared away a big slab of rock salt that had become stuck against a curb in the parking lot, threatening the health of the nearby grass.

Other AVMA staff members walked or rode their bicycles to work, and still others made a point of eschewing our elevators and walking up and down stairs in order to traverse our 5-story building. We’re really proud of each and every one of them for taking time to think about their daily impact on our planet, and their willingness to give up some convenience in order to pitch in and do their part.

We told you in advance about the contest we organized, and we’re happy to report that all of our participants did, in fact, remember to turn off their computer monitors when they left for the day! Two employees won (randomly-drawn) prizes in the contest, and everyone who helped with our outdoor cleanup got to take home a compact fluorescent light bulb and microfiber towel.

So, AVMA members, what did you do to observe Earth Day? We’d love to hear from you in the comments below. If you’re in private practice and thinking about what you can do to “green” your clinic, check out our “It’s Easier Being Green” video on AVMA TV. It offers practical pointers and shows how making even small changes to become more eco-friendly can help your practice.

We also asked our Earth Day volunteers and other staff to tell us some of the things they did to help the environment on Earth Day. Here’s a partial list:

  • Used my own coffee mug instead of a disposable cup.
  • Cleaned the creek behind my house.
  • Picked up trash in a wooded area behind my house.
  • Didn’t print anything out during the day.
  • Air dried my hair.
  • Put reusable grocery bags in the car.
  • Drove to work more slowly to save gas.
  • Picked up an entire bag of trash during my nightly exercise walk.


We’ve posted some photos of our clean-up work on Facebook, so please check them out and let us know what you think!

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