" Sustainability should be second nature to our business practices and intent. " M3D strives to help others achieve this goal. That's our vocation and our expertise.

OSHA, CSR & Beyond – Sustainable Thinking effects us all

http://g2builders.net/wp-content/uploads/2012/10/Safety_Gear.gifI recently took and completed the OSHA (Occupation, Safety & Health Administration) 10-hour Occupational Safety & Health in Construction Course administrated by ABLE Safety Consulting.  This is a great class to take not only if you are a construction worker but also a designer, architect, engineer, developer, manufacturer or anybody that has product or associated with the built environment.  The 10 hour OSHA training includes a basic overview of the following topics, Introduction to OSHA, Cranes, Fall Protection, Electrical, Personal Protective Equipment, Scaffolds, Materials Handling, Stairs/Ladders, Power Tools, and Excavations. This gives workers a general training on the most hazardous aspects of the construction industry.

We in the design and building industry have been talking about effects of hazardous materials to end users and the general public, but we also need to consider the choices we make and how they effect the contractors, installers and builders.  They are the ones that first come in contact with all our specifications and design requirements.  I am not saying that we need to compromise any design but that we need to understand what we are specifying and exposing others to within our requests.  These hazardous materials not only effect these workers but in some cases the chemicals and residues are on their clothing that they bring home to their families, so they are also being exposed to these materials.

We need to start seeing the project as a whole and not just parts.  As we are looking at LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) to bring better standards into the building environment we have to see things holistically not just as points to be achieved. For Example, specifying Bamboo flooring because it is a regenerative material is good for the environment and to achieve points but also knowing what chemicals are on the material when it is made and what happens when it is installed is necessary in the specification process.  The product might be made from the right materials but the adhesives or coating of the products are not.  So during instillation these chemicals would be at the highest concentration to put the contractors health in danger and would also effect the occupants without them knowing.

As companies are building their CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) messages and visions they need to include the health of their employees’ and make sure they work in a safe environment.  As part of the CSR vision they need to also be looked into how their actions and decisions effect others in the work place, community and society at large.  Understanding that the products they choose effect many people on so many levels.  The more companies take the lead and make the right choices for both our health and environmental health, the higher the demand for these services, materials and products will be.   As we see in all economic trends, the higher something is in demand, then the  increased number of  that product / service / material would reach the market and drives costs down.

M3D Gives Back – Tree of Life Initiative – PS 165 Edith K. Bergtraum Queens NY

Here at M3D we believes in giving back to our community as we help our clients do the same.  M3D’s mission is to become actively involved and develop meaningful partnerships with charitable organizations in their efforts to improve the quality of people’s lives. We are committed to achieving this goal one day at a time, for however long it takes. Our CSR policy is imbedded into our business practices and policies.

“The Tree of Life Initiative ” is an integrated program that is part of our company’s culture. It involves:

•    M3D dedicated profit % to this program
•    All Employee committee to find worthy charities and organizations
•    All Employee participation in volunteering some paid work hours to an approved organization
•    All Employee developed projects for fundraising efforts for worthy charities and organizations

We are working with a local elementary school (P.S. 165 Edith K. Bergtraum) to create an environmental and social education program.  We have connected and partnered with Build it Green NYC’s Big Gives Back program to design and create a Mobile Garden for the school.  M3D Connected with the school and started to see how we can help them implement an out door garden to be utilized into their core education program and to start bringing sustainable thinking into their school culture.  After some analysis we found a roof top space that could be used but funding is not available at this time.  Looking at what we wanted to achieve, we decided to start small and help start the conversation.   Creating Mobile Gardens that would be shared between classes and teachers to reach the majority of students and promote collaboration.  After searching both BIGNYC lohttps://mail-attachment.googleusercontent.com/attachment/?ui=2&ik=5609779d20&view=att&th=13dc7716b374f1d4&attid=0.2&disp=inline&realattid=f_hf04uhpx1&safe=1&zw&saduie=AG9B_P-PbuYorcpjg3Fpdia_63fh&sadet=1366398996782&sads=LpW8EQ3Ymw6Yd2pdd9OkukFDBaIcations M3D’s Principal, Maya Camou,found mobile pedestals that could be used and designed the top to work as the garden base, and display area for the teachers. The display area and partitions in the top are from florescent light covers also found at BIGNYC. A parent volunteer (Alan Weinstein) and his son (Jordan) built the tops out of left over wood that they had in their garage. A total of 3 Mobile Gardens were designed, one for each floor of the school.  Filing cabinets were used to encourage collaboration.  All pedestals will contain projects, assignments and other information and ideas all teachers use for their classes, so all can have the same information and translate them into their classroom education. Here are some pictures:

 

 

 

 

 

The Mobile Gardens are ready to be used and to celebrate earth week a few classes will be creating their own projects . Fist project developed by M3D will be to encourage:

  • Sustainable thinking
  • Healthy Eating
  • Urban Agriculture
  • Art and Creative Thinking
  • Family Projects / Education
  • DOE Core Standards

After state testing students from all grades will paint the bottoms of these Gardens and make them their own.  Pictures of the final product will be posted on our site.  This year will be the launch of these gardens but we will continue to work with the school to make them a part of their education process.

Happy Earth Day Everyone!