Finally today I’ve managed to do something I’ve been meaning to organise for ages – I’ve written an environment and ethics statement for my shops, plus I’ve added a carbon offset contribution which buyers can purchase along with any jewellery they buy from me.
Every business has an environmental and ethical impact and a micro business run by an indie designer is no different. Don’t believe anyone who claims that an indie business is somehow green or socially responsible by default purely because it’s indie!
Of course buying handmade and from indie businesses does come with a number of plusses in terms of moving away from mass-production, but there’s a lot more to it than that.
My business makes its mark on the environment in terms of having a web presence, an internet connection, hardware, tools, materials, shipping, chemicals, lighting, paper … and more.
Of course being a jewellery maker comes with its own special array of environmental issues, such as in relation to the mining of precious metals and gemstones (both have serious ethical issues as well), the use of sometimes very toxic chemicals and so on.
I do what I can to minimise the impact of my business on the environment, but there will always be something to offset when it comes to greenhouse gases. Given that customers ultimately have to pay the cost of such offsets (a business has to pay for itself, of course), I’ve decided to be transparent and give my customers the option to contribute voluntarily.
So there is now a small carbon offset available for purchase in both my Australian handmade jewellery shop and my international handmade jewelry shop.
The contributions I collect will be donated quarterly to Carbon Neutral, a non-profit carbon offset organisation operated in Australia.
I’ve also written an environment and ethics statement to outline how I try to minimise the negative impact my business might have on the environment and the world in general.
Plus I’ve now identified the handmade jewellery I make which is specifically designed to help me recycle some of the scrap silver which is leftover from other pieces, meaning that only small pieces are set aside for refining. View my recycled jewellery.