Welcome back to our series talking about Maggie Sottero’s sustainability initiatives! In this series, we have learned about Maggie Sottero’s waste reduction efforts and how we’re rethinking resource consumption. This week we’re sharing more about work that we, the Maggie family, care a lot about. Protecting biodiversity and habitat preservation.
Keep reading to learn more about our focus on protecting biodiversity and habitat preservation. Make sure to follow our social media channels by clicking the buttons below so that you can stay in the know about all things Maggie!
What has Maggie Sottero Been Up To?
Maggie Sottero has been working to foster positive impacts in the world. We do that through our inclusivity efforts, community volunteerism, and environmental initiatives. We’re committed to creating beautiful experiences for our brides and helping our global community through charitable actions. In short, we are dedicated to creating a more sustainable wedding space.
We’re rethinking everything we do with a regenerative, future-facing view. The Maggie family wants to be the change and disrupt the standard. We want to create the future to ensure our brides’ love stories—and our Planet—endure.
Our sustainability work focuses on three key areas of impact. Those are waste reduction, resource consumption, and protecting biodiversity. Keep reading to learn more about our support for habitat preservation and biodiversity protection.
How are we Protecting Biodiversity and Supporting Habitat Preservation?
Maggie Sottero is helping efforts to back healthy ecosystems globally and near our Scope 1 facilities. This includes our partnership with One Tree Planted and our volunteer work with regional conservation groups like International Bird Rescue. Many of our team members care deeply about wildlife protection and the conservation of vital ecosystems. They inspired our establishment of eco-impact volunteer projects.
We’re proud to offer paid time for staff to volunteer in habitats near our office and warehouse facilities. Our teams in the U.S. and the U.K. have volunteered on several biodiversity-focused projects. That includes everything from cleaning up trails to maintaining wildlife habitats.
In the U.S., we are joining forces with International Bird Rescue. We will be the corporate pilot sponsor for their new Conservation Action Program in Utah. Last Spring, our volunteers learned more about the fragile ecosystem of the Great Salt Lake. They also cleaned up over 240 pounds of litter to help protect the biodiversity of the lake. This Fall, the SLC team lent their time to habitat preservation at Tracy Aviary. Tracy is the largest and oldest of only two free-standing public aviaries in the country. It is also a leader in environmental education and conservation.
In the U.K., the Maggie Sottero team is helping to preserve wildlife habitats and green public spaces. We are doing this with ongoing projects at Eastham Country Park near our Birkenhead office. In April, the team removed hundreds of pounds of trash in support of habitat preservation. In November, they volunteered for a full day of weeding, mulching, and tree cutback to create room for native species and greater biodiversity in the park.
Additional Habitat Preservation Efforts
In June 2023, our volunteer work moved to our location photo shoot in Costa Rica! For our Spring ‘24 collection, we reimagined our photo shoot to include a focus on protecting biodiversity. We wanted to highlight our partnership with One Tree Planted. We also wanted to volunteer with an inspiring regional conservation group, CIRENAS, a beacon of environmental stewardship. Our team joined with CIRENAS to plant White Almond trees to support the regeneration of biological corridors and beach ecosystems.
Read on to learn more about CIRENAS’ mission to “create transformative connections between people and the environment.” Hear about the ongoing rebuild of their Turtle Hatchery, which was destroyed by arson fire in December 2022, as well.
CIRENAS is located within Hacienda Ario, a 4,700-acre family-owned mixed-use coastal ranch on the Pacific Coast of the Nicoya Peninsula. Home to a diverse set of ecosystems and land uses, this location holds a big portion of the Nicoya Peninsula’s most important and pristine watershed and coastal riparian habitat.
The creation of CIRENAS was inspired by Nathaniel Grew Parkinson, “father of six and advocate of healthy, outdoor living.” He cared deeply about the preservation of the land through responsible and sustainable land stewardship for future generations. Mr. Grew’s desire to see the ranch become an “educational campground” for students, scientists, families, and individuals inspired his daughter, Caroline, and her husband, Tucker to start CIRENAS (Center for Investigation of Social and Natural Resources) in 2008.
A section of Hacienda Ario was separated for the construction of new infrastructure. Today, CIRENAS is led by a team of “the most loyal, gracious, and hardworking residents of the area who truly believe in the mission and vision of the organization.”
That mission: To create deep connections between people and the environment through education, research, integration, and innovation. CIRENAS does this with educational opportunities at their campus. They also have projects taken on by volunteers in support of biological corridors and healthy ecosystems.
CIRENAS’s Ongoing Initiatives for Habitat Preservation
One of their ongoing projects is the CIRENAS Turtle Refuge and Hatchery. The expanse of the coastline adjacent to CIRENAS is an important site for the nesting of all four species of turtles found in Costa Rica. Those species are Olive Ridley, Leatherback, Hawksbill, and Green turtles.
Natural predators like crabs, dogs, birds, and felines, along with human intervention for the consumption of turtle eggs, present a serious threat to the survival of baby turtles. This means species endangerment is becoming a possibility in the near future.
With our focus on protecting biodiversity, CIRENAS was an ideal partner for the Maggie Sottero advertising team. As they prepped for our Spring 2024 photo shoot, our team planned to volunteer their time at the turtle nursery.
Sadly, in December 2022, an arson fire destroyed the entire refuge. This was likely the work of poachers, leaving the refuge in smoking ruins. Although sad, the CIRENAS team refused to give up on their mission to protect these endangered species. They were determined to continue to assist baby turtles in safely making their way to the waiting ocean.
With the support of business and individual donations, CIRENAS began rebuilding the Turtle Refuge and Hatchery in June 2023.
Even as the effort is now ongoing, CIRENAS is still in need of assistance to complete this work. If you’d like to support the rebuild of the turtle hatchery, visit the CIRENAS Giving Page.
While our staff will continue working on conservation initiatives, volunteerism isn’t the only approach we’re taking at Maggie Sottero to protect biodiversity!
Global Partnerships for Environmental Sustainability
In support of our efforts to create a more sustainable future, we’ve joined forces with two organizations. Each takes action with projects around the world to protect biodiversity and offer solutions for some of our biggest challenges.
Maggie Sottero is offsetting 100% of our business flights in partnership with Cool Effect. It is recognized all over the world as a non-profit platform that’s working to lower carbon pollution. Their range of global projects is carefully chosen and scientifically verified to reduce carbon emissions.
In 2023, we are supporting The Dirt on Dirt. This Cool Effect project focuses on turning U.S. farmland to sustainable agriculture practices. This includes adding cover crops and implementing no-till, which removes and stores carbon in land, one of our largest carbon sinks.
One Tree Planted
Our partnership with One Tree Planted is both important to us and good for the planet. We’re planting a tree in honor of every Maggie bride, with per-gown donations directed to regional projects around the world. We joined with One Tree Planted because we liked their caring approach to each project. They plant ecologically appropriate seedlings in the right locations and conditions. Through their local reforestation partners, they continue to monitor the progress and report back on impact.
Our first project, “Ridge to Reef” in Costa Rica, is considered a “crown jewel of biodiversity.” Our ongoing tree planting will help to recover endangered tree species. It will also create an elevational corridor for wildlife that must adapt to a changing climate. To date, we have donated over 7,500 trees to be planted, with many more to come!
Why Plant Trees?
We know that planting trees is not the only solution to support environmental sustainability. There are other sustainability priorities and emerging technologies that may quicken solutions. Nevertheless, planting trees is a very helpful action for the planet. Trees can restore cleaner air, water, and biodiversity. They soak up carbon and absorb heat.
We say that we are supporting biodiversity with this initiative. In truth, though, it is biodiversity that supports us and future generations. That includes our Maggie brides. That’s why we created this initiative. To honor our brides and retailers and invite them to be partners in change with us.
Make sure to keep an eye on our tree-planting tracker here to follow our progress. If our sustainability efforts speak to your bridal brand wish list, please view our collections. Especially our lower-impact gown offerings! You can do this by finding an Authorized Retailer near you!
Protecting Biodiversity is just one area of impact that we’re focused on as we implement sustainability at Maggie Sottero. This is hard work, showing our collective goal to create a more sustainable wedding space for our Maggie brides. Our priority is our people, our planet, and our hope for the future. To learn more about our efforts to create positive impacts, make sure to check out the Our Heart page by clicking the button below!
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