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Is This the Greenest Travel Company in Ireland?

Is This the Greenest Travel Company in Ireland?

Irish adventure travel company Earth’s Edge is officially a B Corp certified business, after successfully completing the lengthy judgement process. Specialising in high altitude treks, Earth’s Edge runs expeditions to places like Everest Base Camp, Kilimanjaro and Machu Picchu. Their committed drive to reducing the environmental impacts of their trips as well as their creation of community projects benefiting local workers helped Earth’s Edge to earn this accreditation.

The B Corp certification recognises businesses that balance purpose with profit, and put environmental and social responsibilities to the forefront of how they operate. B Corp is a worldwide accreditation, and has been awarded to prestigious companies like Patagonia, Ben & Jerry’s and Intrepid Travel. And it just so happens that March is international B Corp month, too.

James McManus (Lorraine O’Sullivan)

But it’s not the only milestone that Earth’s Edge has achieved. Earth’s Edge is officially the highest rated B Corp in Ireland, with a score of 90.8. It’s a score that the entire team is incredibly proud of, including the Managing Director of Earth’s Edge, James McManus.

“Since our inception in 2007, sustainability has been at the core of everything we do at Earth’s Edge,” says James. “Becoming a B Corp seemed like a lofty goal three years ago. However, we’ve not only achieved that goal but we’ve become more determined than ever to be a driving force of environmental and societal change in Ireland and beyond.”

The process of becoming a B Corp certified business is strenuous, comprehensive and incredibly detailed. Every facet of the business is taken into consideration, as well as the future goals of the company. There are five main pillars that are considered as part of the B Corp assessment, and Earth’s Edge flew ahead of the curve in each and every one…

Community

Earth’s Edge runs numerous community projects around the world, which have only increased during the pandemic. These include: porter scholarship programmes in Kilimanjaro, interest free loans and grants given to porters in countries decimated by Covid, and community school projects in Dublin, among many others.

Environment

Alongside a stringent and lengthy environmental policy, 3 trees are planted every year on the behalf of each Earth’s Edge customer. Brand new Working From Home environmental policies have been created.

Customers

Customers are ensured that the expeditions booked have a minimal impact on the environment and have a positive impact on our staff worldwide.

Workers

Huge focus put on wellbeing of staff, with training and CPD. All of the Earth’s Edge managers are women, something the team is incredibly proud of. As well as this, all staff get to go on one free expedition per year.

Governance

Goals to become more transparent as a business.

Among the standout projects in operation are the community drives held in the countries most frequently visited by Earth’s Edge. The local teams of porters and guides in Kilimanjaro, Machu Picchu and Everest Base Camp have been supported with free grants and loans for businesses, to keep them going while tourism is on pause.

While the vast majority of Irish businesses have pivoted to a working from home model in the last year, Earth’s Edge has paved the way in terms of sustainability. A Virtual Office Stewardship scheme was launched, to encourage employees to continue working in an environmentally conscious way, even at home. Employees are reducing or eliminating plastics, growing their own vegetables, even making their own cosmetics.

(Main pic: Earth’s Edge atop Kilimanjaro)

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Fionn Davenport is the editor-in-chief of the ITTN group, including ITTN and ITTN Ireland. He's one of Ireland's best-known travel journalists and writers, with nearly 30 years' experience writing guidebooks for Lonely Planet and others.

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