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2010 Case Study: Make an Impact – individual climate change action
This year we continued to develop and enhance our Make an Impact program, which helps employees and the wider community reduce their household water and energy use and become a part of the solution to climate change. The initiative was originally launched in 2006 in collaboration with Greening Australia, our long-time conservation partner, and with support from the Alcoa Foundation.
Building on the success of the program over the past few years, in 2010 we expanded the scope of Make an Impact to get even more individuals participating. In early 2010 our environmental partner in Victoria, Barwon Water, became a Make an Impact associate and rolled out the program to its employees, with 18% of the staff participating by year end. Barwon Water has a long-standing relationship with Alcoa and is Victoria's largest regional urban water corporation.
To help extend the Make an Impact message to the next generation, Alcoa of Australia and Greening Australia developed Make an Impact toolkits for 60 schools around Alcoa’s Australian operations. The toolkits can be accessed from the school libraries and contain four easy-to-use tools that are designed to help children think differently in today’s carbon constrained world. The toolkits contain an infrared thermometer, compass, Power Mate (which measures the energy use of household items), stopwatch and corresponding activity worksheets, which together can be used by children and their families to understand and reduce their carbon footprint. Ten toolkits are also in loan circulation nationally for our employees to share with their families.
At the end of 2010, nearly one quarter of Alcoa’s Australian workforce was registered online through Make an Impact, although we believe participation rates are actually significantly higher based on attendance at onsite workshops with ‘green experts,’ the waiting list for toolkits and hits to the website. Participation in the Make an Impact program is one of our key employee engagement tools and we anticipate even greater uptake of the program in future years. Additional information is available on the Make an Impact website.