Writer's note: April 22 is Earth Day. The day was made to raise awareness about environmental pollution. This day has begun purely as a civil campaign, unlike the UN World Environment Day (June 5). Earth Day was made right after the offshore oil rig disasters in California, USA, in 1969, hoping that more people would be interested in environmental issues. Since then, they have facilitated various actions to raise awareness of climate change and the necessity of low-carbon life practices for reducing greenhouse emissions at the industry level. Having the history behind it, I would like to report on how industries in Korea are taking the issue as we are facing the 53rd anniversary of Earth Day.
[Consumerwide-Youngchul, Woo Reporter/ Yohan, Bok Reporter] On April 22, the Day of Earth, the distribution industry started taking action for environmental protection. Activities vary from promotion of environmental protection practices to opening up in public about their former ESG performance. When you participate in the environmental protection activities of the distribution industry, you too are consuming based on value.
Emart is operating 'Ga-ple-ji-woo' campaign as they celebrate the Day of Earth. ('Ga-ple-ji-woo' is a shorten word for 'Ga-jeo-ga-yo-plastic, Ji-kyeo-ga-yo-Woo-ri-ba-da'.) (In English, this means: "Take your plastic, and let's guard our seas.") The Gapljiwoo campaign, a cooperative project, aims for environmental protection activities that include plastic reduction through the "open eco-friendly platform'. The platform was made by Emart to support their campaign.
This campaign, which began in 2018 among three partner businesses, now has 18 partnerships. Emart and partnership businesses are hosting eco friendly campaign activities in four areas, which include collection of plastics, partner company brand cooperation and promotions, expansion of coast cleaning activities, and strengthening environmental trainings, during this year.
Following this, Emart is operating a "double' carbon neutralization point accumulation promotion until the 27th. You can either purchase point-related products at Emart after becoming a homepage member (carbon neutralization point) or by issuing the mobile receipt along with SSG point accumulation. Every month, you can withdraw them in cash or credit card points.
SSGdotcom is operating a plogging event that customers and staff run together at the family park of Yongsan, Seoul, on the 22nd, the Day of Earth. Event begins at 11 a.m. on that day. 25 teams were selected among the customers who purchased Pulmuwon products at ssgdotcom and applied for the event. Participants, along with their beloved ones (family, friends, or couples), are going to collect trash for 90 minutes at the Yongsangu Seoul area, following the guidance of the staff. All the participants are given new Puluwon products, cold reserving bags, and goods to remember Plogging Day. In addition, when you complete '10 thousand steps' and SNS verification missions, they give away a mood-light, vegetable gardening kit.
The department store is hosting various events on the Day of the Earth. Hyundai department store is facilitating 'The Seoul Market', which promotes small business products in cooperation with Seoul Business Agency, between the 22nd (Day of Earth) and the 25th at the food event hall of Mongdong branch (B2). They are presenting 100 eco-friendly products from 18 brands.
Lotte department store is hosting a 'Beauty ESG campaign pop-up store' at the main branch of Lotte department store, Junggu, Seoul, till the 27th as they celebrate the Day of Earth.
Ecommerce and platform businesses are busy with activities for earth protection as well. Ikea Korea is hosting the 'Month of Earth' event, which includes sustainable food discounts, buyback service special refund benefits, and a flea market until the end of the month.
First of all, they are selling sustainable menus in two types, which are made with vegetarian meat, at a discounted price exclusively for Ikea family members. In addition, they refund up to 65% of the first purchase price through a refund card if customers use the 'Buyback Service' through which Ikea purchases back second-hand Ikea furniture from customers.
Some have presented their ESG practice performances from former days. Kurly has presented the 'Kurly Purplebox' performances on the 22nd, the Day of Earth. Kurly has been leading the ESG practice. In relation to that, they began the 'Kurly Purplebox' project in July 2021. Kurly Purplebox is a recycled wrapping paper aiming for eco-friendly delivery. This project had a 9.66 million-paperbox reduction effect last year. Considering that the amount of pulp from a tree 30 years old is 59 kg, using the 'Kurly Purple Box" has the effect of saving 2 thousand trees. Reduced paperbox is about 2.5 times Yeoeudo in area calculation, or as big as 15 Seoul-sup (forest).
Along with the increase in use of Kurly Purpleboxes, the water icepacks (5%) and dry ices (2.3%) used for the frozen packaging also decreased compared to last year. Plus, they have reduced the use of OPP tapes for 60 thousand kilometers and plastic bags for 7 million bags after beginning to use paper tapes and paper bags.
In April last year, by inventing recycled resin icepacks, Kurly reduced 930 tons of CO2 emissions and 542 tons of plastic production. This is known to be the first try in e-commerce history. This has the effect of transplanting 26,800 pine trees. Kurly has been facilitating a social contribution program as well since 2019. This program provided 1400 air purification plants to four schools through a class forest project until 2020. Additionally, through the 'Sat-byeol-sup-ki-woo-gi' project (growing forest with morning star), they have transplanted 2500 trees in the area of the 'Oil Tank Culture Park' in Sangam Mapogu, Seoul, and Seoulsup, Seongdonggu. Kurly is also planning on various ESG activities.
Delivery app, Yogiyo has presented their eco-friendly activity performance during the last 2 years on the Day of Earth. The activity involves customers and staff members. Between 2021 and 2022, Yogiyo reduced 1300 tons of plastic waste through major eco-friendly activities, which included changing the default choice to 'not receiving disposible cutlets', using reusable cups in the company cafe, and replacing the delivery service with reusable bowls.
In particular, by changing the default choice to 'not receiving disposible cutlets', they have reduced 2500 tons of green gas emissions, which has the effect of transplanting 350000 pine trees that are 30 years old.