pair Networks & Sustainability
pair Networks is determined to set the standard for sustainable business practices in our industry. Our environmental policies and beliefs are woven throughout our culture, guiding our decisions and business practices.
Sustainability refers to both the ability to properly plan and grow a profitable business across a long period of time, as well as to the practice of working diligently to reduce, or eliminate, negative impacts on the natural environment. pair Networks firmly believes in, and practices, both forms of sustainability.
pair Networks has measured, reduced, and offset its carbon footprint. All of pair Networks' operations, including data centers, support operations, development labs, administrative facilities, employee commutes, and business travel are 100% carbon neutral. Additionally, pair Networks is offset by 100% renewable energy. Our commitment to sustainability is better for the natural environment, great for our employees, and awesome for our customers.
Carbon Neutral Business Operations Offset by 100% Renewable Energy
pair Networks has measured, reduced, and offset its company-wide carbon footprint.
As of August 1, 2007, all of pair Networks' operations, including datacenters, support operations, administrative facilities, employee commutes, and business travel are 100% carbon neutral. Plus, pair Networks is offset by 100% renewable energy.
What does it mean to be carbon neutral? It means that we did a greenhouse gas inventory to better understand our carbon footprint and help us decide how to reduce and offset our impact. In addition to our energy efficiency and conservation plans, we are offsetting the carbon emissions generated company-wide by purchasing verified emission reductions (VERs) and renewable energy credits (RECs) from Renewable Choice Energy.
The projects that we are supporting help reduce harmful levels of carbon dioxide emissions throughout the World.
Our commitment has an annual environmental impact that is similar to:
- planting 30,919 mature trees or
- not driving over 7.5 million miles in an average car
By maintaining carbon neutral operations we help reduce our impact on climate change and help preserve natural resources.
Reduced Energy Consumption
We reduce energy consumption in our facilities in many different ways. We also reevaluate our energy consumption on a regular basis so we can improve on our conservation efforts.
Our workplace policies require employees to turn off the lights in areas that are not occupied, turn off and unplug devices that are not actively being used, allow idle workstations to enter sleep mode, and shut off workstations when they won't be in use for a day or more. We also require employees to shut off computer monitors when not at their desks.
The office and meeting spaces within our facilities have large windows that not only afford exterior views, but also let in a great deal of natural light. Illuminating our workspaces with natural light, and only using energy efficient artificial lighting when absolutely necessary, saves a significant amount of energy. Abundant natural light also provides a healthy environment for our employees.
Our internal development and testing servers are virtualized (used for multiple purposes) whenever possible, to reduce the total amount of hardware we use, reduce our energy consumption, and reduce our cooling requirements. Our workstation hardware is chosen for its materials. We look for components that have low toxicity, are safe for recycling or disposal, and consume little power during routine use.
When it comes to our choice of workstation monitors, we only use low power, LCD and LED-LCD monitors. Our monitors typically use up to 30% less power and generate less heat than their CRT counterparts, while also reducing employee eye strain. That means happy eyes for employees and less energy wasted on cooling. Plus, LCD and LED monitors contain fewer heavy metals, such as lead and mercury, than CRT monitors, which is much better for the environment when the monitors reach the end of their life.
Energy Efficient Web Hosting Servers
Our Web hosting servers use platinum-rated, fully-redundant power supplies. That means we offer the most energy efficient, highest quality, and most reliable server technology to our customers.
Our newest Web hosting servers occupy only one quarter of the space that most standard, rack-mounted servers occupy, and they generate significantly less heat. Individual components of the servers can be upgraded or replaced as needed, without having to replace the cases or power supplies. As a result, we can deploy more servers in less space, our datacenters require less cooling capacity, the life-cycle of our server hardware is greatly extended, and we save a significant amount of energy while offering the most reliable Web hosting services.
Healthy Office Environment
We have created a healthy, positive, and productive work environment for our employees.
During our most recent office renovations, we used earth-friendly materials such as cork flooring, recycled blue jean insulation, and biodegradable paints and other coatings that contained no volatile organic compounds (VOCs).
Our offices are cleaned with only non-toxic, natural and organic, allergen-free cleaning products. This promotes good employee health and does not introduce dangerous chemicals into our indoor environment.
All workspaces have windows providing exterior views and plenty of natural sunlight. This allows our employees to maintain a visual and emotional connection with the natural environment.
We care about the air quaility in our workspaces. We've placed plants throughout our offices to improve the indoor air quality. We also have mechanical air filtration that keeps the air clean.
Our cafeteria is equipped with purified water dispensers. Ceramic mugs, glass drinking containers, and stainless steel flatware are available for all of our employees and guests to use. We strongly discourage the use of plastic cups, plastic flatware, plastic water bottles, and styrofoam.
USDA Organic fruit and fair trade tea and coffee are available every day to employees, for free, in our cafeteria. Many healthy alternatives to traditional snack foods are available in our vending machines. We also provide our entire staff with a lunch of delicious organic and natural foods, once per month, also for free.
We use our office space wisely. We use spaces for different purposes throughout the day, not wasting any space, and reducing costs and energy usage. For example, our conference center doubles as a yoga studio for our complimentary employee yoga classes.
All of the paper products we purchase (paper towels, paper napkins, toilet tissue, note pads, and printer paper) are made from 100% recycled content and are fully recyclable and/or compostable. We also do our best to buy office products, including pens and other plastic and metal items, with 100% recycled content. As a rule, we reduce wasteful office supply use, for example by viewing documents electronically rather than printing them, and we only order new supplies when it's absolutely necessary.
When we do place orders for new supplies, we order in batches, for all of the items that we need, in order to reduce packaging and reduce waste as much as possible.
Company-Wide RecyclingWe reduce waste via a company-wide recycling program. We recycle materials such as aluminum cans, glass, household batteries, paper, and plastic. Employees are welcome to bring these items into the office, from home, for recycling.
Hardware Reuse & Recycling
We reuse and repurpose servers, network gear, and workstations for as long as we reasonably can. Once a piece of equipment has reached the end of its useful life, we donate parts or entire systems to various organizations. Any hardware that can be recycled is sent off for recycling. Any hardware that can't be reused or recycled is disposed of in an environmentally responsible way.
Earth-Friendly Employee Culture
We promote an earth-friendly and progressive culture in a variety of ways. We strive to promote balanced, healthy lives for every employee.
We offer our employees a supply of free USDA-certified organic fruit in our cafeteria.
We offer a free membership to the regional Audubon Society, allowing our employees to learn more about environmental stewardship and experience Western Pennsylvania's natural environment firsthand. Our employees also volunteer for events sponsored by the Audubon Society and other similar organizations.
Many of our employees do their part to help the environment by using public transportation, riding bikes, and taking hybrid and electric cars to work. All employee commutes are factored in and included in our verified emission reductions purchase.
Employees are encouraged to go outside and walk around during the work day. The office space also has room to walk around indoors in bad weather. No one is stuck at their desk all day.
Our offices are located within walking distance of restaurants, coffee shops, a river walking and biking trail, a park, and a public library. This saves employees from having to use cars for midday food or errands.
We also offer free on-site yoga classes to all employees twice a week in our conference center.
We hold educational seminars throughout the year. In addition to seminars about our services and business operations, other topics include: financial planning, healthy lifestyles, nutrition, and energy conservation.
We support organizations that promote environmental stewardship, alternative transportation, conservation, education, energy efficiency, and community building.
We encourage our employees to volunteer for community service organizations and we compensate our employees, by way of our "Volunteer Days Program", for their time away from work.
Every employee is entitled to thousands of dollars in supplemental compensation through our Quality of Life Fund, or "Q-Fund". The Q-Fund is designed to encourage employees to lead balanced, healthy lives. In this unique program, employees are reimbursed for expenditures that improve the balance and quality of their lives, including: lease or purchase payments for alternative fuel vehicles, camping and sporting goods, bicycles, Energy Star rated appliances, LED lighting, solar panels, personal trainers and life coaches, and memberships to cultural organizations.
Reduced Emissions from Smarter Work Schedules
Employee work schedules are created with two goals in mind:
- Providing our customers with the best service possible
- Reducing our overall impact on the Earth
Schedules are set so that employees travel to and from work at off-peak hours, avoiding rush hour. Commuting to and from work on less crowded roads has the following positive impacts:
- reduced idling time during stop-and-go driving saves gas and cuts down on emissions
- shorter overall commute times means less wasted time, lower stress, greater happiness, and higher productivity
- fewer cars on the road during a commute provides safer and calmer commutes, whether on the bus, in a car, on a bike, or walking
We strongly encourage biking, public transportation, and walking as ways to get to and from work, and in employees' personal lives. We also provide covered, secured bike storage for employees who bike to work.
In addition, all employee commutes are factored in and included in our verified emission reductions purchase from Renewable Choice Energy.