This year has been remarkable, and at GECA, we have embraced and adapted to the changes everyone has had to make.
2020 started with the devastating droughts, followed by the worst bushfire season the country has ever seen, then floods, and of course, the global pandemic, which continues to bring the world to a standstill. These disasters have had far-reaching impacts on the environment and society, from biodiversity and climate change to human rights and labour conditions.
At GECA, we believe we have an opportunity, now more than ever, to ensure that we are driving, promoting, and delivering sustainable solutions. While businesses lost the ability to have face to face interaction, we at GECA continued to communicate, advocate, collaborate and create pathways for companies to improve their practices and receive recognition for their achievements.
Moving toward our circular future
We’ve seen a shift in business and consumer behaviours as we start immersing ourselves more openly into that circular economy lens. Within Australia and beyond, the rise of circular economy thinking is creating new ways of approaching manufacturing, embracing innovative ways to design out waste and making products that can play a regenerative role in the environment. We are moving beyond a benchmark of least harm and toward one of adding more good by designing to replenish our planet rather than merely replacing resources we’ve used.
In October, we celebrated World Ecolabel Day with our Innovations for a Circular Economy event and a fantastic line up of speakers. A special mention and huge thanks to the City of Sydney for supporting this event in many ways. GECA continues to be a proud member of the Global Ecolabelling Network (GEN), who drive this initiative to promote awareness of ecolabelling’s benefits.
Let’s build back better
GECA was thrilled to announce Green Star recognition for six new standards this year. GECA licensees certified under these standards will be rewarded, gaining recognition in Green Star projects for new products and services, for demonstrating their ongoing commitment to having a lower environmental, health and social impact!
In 2020, GECA certified products were also made available on the Building Product Information (BPI) Rating platform, saving architects and other building professionals thousands of hours as they search for sustainable products for their projects.
Changes to Team GECA
This year has seen its fair share of changes to the GECA team.
We are delighted to have two new team members join GECA in 2020! Deepali Ghadge, who had volunteered for GECA for almost a year, was appointed to a permanent role as our Standards & Technical Officer. Deepali brings with her some fantastic knowledge to support the team in performing LCAs and EPDs, as well as supporting our Claims Authentication team.
We also welcomed Raven Mason-Uyeda as our Administration & Marketing Officer. Starting as a temporary short-term addition, she has become a valued permanent member of the GECA team.
We said a brief farewell to our carbon specialist Rodrigo Martinez, who had to travel back to Mexico, but we are excited to be welcoming him back early 2021.
I am super thankful to my entire team! They are a fantastic group of hard-working, focused and determined individuals who are continually working toward better sustainable solutions for consumption and production, and supporting licensees on their journey of improvement. It inspires me to see how passionate they are when driving our education and advocacy campaigns to enable organisations and individuals to create a better future for people and planet.
Love our licensees
I’d like to acknowledge the ethics and conscientiousness of all GECA’s licensees. I am so impressed by the hard work and determination it takes to become GECA certified under our rigorous lifecycle ecolabel standards and the efforts of our licensees that have chosen to start their journey on the pathway to sustainable solutions with our Claims Authentication service. Without our amazing licensees that show outstanding leadership and commitment, GECA would not be able to continue, congratulations to each of you and thank you for your continued support.
As this unprecedented year comes to a close, at GECA, we are determined to continue the theme of collaboration. We are looking forward to exciting new projects in 2021, with both new and existing partners and stakeholders. We look forward to building and promoting greener practices in a credible, verifiable and accurate fashion.
Wishing you all a safe, healthy and happy holiday period, and we look forward to doing good with you in 2021!