Marko Metzinger/Studio D
If you've been to your local Origins store lately, you might notice that things look different. The stores have gone eco-chic: low-energy lighting, plenty of live plants, low-emission paints, and natural river-rock floors. But perhaps the biggest "green" difference is something you can't see. In July 2007, Origins purchased wind energy credits to offset 100 percent of the traditional energy used by its retail stores, manufacturing plants, and third-party manufacturers. "Essentially, the wind energy brings more clean energy to the power grid, pushing off dirty energy," explains Lynn Mazzella, senior vice president of global product development and sustainability at Origins. "As we worked on our Origins Organics line [a 2007 REDBOOK MVP winner!], we felt it was important to reduce our carbon footprint."
And let's just say, the results are mind-blowing: Purchasing wind energy credits for 135 stores is equal to offsetting 4,304 metric tons of carbon dioxide the equivalent of taking 825 cars off the road or planting more than 850,000 trees. In even bigger news, Origins' parent company, Estée Lauder, has followed suit purchasing wind power for the manufacturing of the other 28 brands in its portfolio.