Last year, the EnviRun for the Earth (in short, EnviRun) campaign, which began as a plogging volunteer activity of members of SK Innovation and its subsidiaries, went beyond Korea and spread the importance of environmental protection to every single corner of the world. It not only vitalized the direct cleansing activities for the environment, but also raised people’s awareness about the gravity of environmental issues and contributed to changing their lifestyles.
01 | SK Innovation takes the lead in the EnviRun campaign
Passionate participation of the members of SK Innovation and its subsidiaries had an important role in vitalizing and spreading the EnviRun campaign to become nationwide. Especially in 2022, SK Innovation ran the EnviRun Plogging Week, twice in April and October, during which more than 50% of the entire members joined the campaign in just two weeks.
Vice Chairman of SK Innovation Kim Jun signified the start of EnviRun Plogging Week 2022 by participating in plogging activity with the company’s new employees. Also, all management of SK Innovation’s subsidiaries took the initiative and joined the activity to spread the campaign. Through active participation of the company’s top management to lead by example, the EnviRun campaign achieved a result of about 7,000 members of SK Innovation and its subsidiaries participating in this environmental protection activity.
▲ CEOs and employees of SK Innovation and subsidiaries participated in the EnviRun Plogging Week in April and October 2022. From upper left, clockwise: (First photo) Vice Chairman of SK Innovation Kim Jun and new employees of SK Innovation, (second photo) CEO of SK Geo Centric Na Kyung-soo and new employees of SK Geo Centric, (third photo) CEO of SK Energy Cho Kyung-mok and SK Energy employees, (fourth photo) CEO of SK Earthon Myeong Seong and SK Earthon members.
The EnviRun activities were taken place not only in Korea but also in various places overseas to spread SK Innovation’s commitment to environmental protection. A total of 19 overseas business sites, including SK Earthon Ho Chi Minh Office, the first overseas participant, in 21 countries joined SK Innovation’s will to make the world green. Furthermore, such active participation became a driving force to promote raising citizens’ awareness of environmental protection and spread the campaign nationwide.
▲ Participation in the EnviRun Plogging Campaign by members of SK Innovation’s global business sites
02 | Expanding beyond the company’s program into a nationwide campaign
One of the goals of the EnviRun campaign is to create a foundation to transform our society into the carbon-neutral one by changing campaign participants’ awareness and lifestyles. The nationwide campaign, which is open to anyone who is interested in environmental protection and volunteer activities, created not only substantial results in cleaning up the environment but also significant outcomes in cultivating citizens’ green awareness and changes in their lifestyles.
Specifically, in April 2022, SK Innovation signed a business agreement to execute a nationwide EnviRun campaign with the Korea Coast Guard, Korea Volunteer Center, and Korea Road Traffic Authority. Based on this agreement, the agencies joined hands together with SK Innovation to come up with ideas to promulgate the campaign further by utilizing their infrastructure and networks across Korea, and the outcome was successful.
▲ (Left) At the headquarters of the Korea Coast Guard in April 2022 (From the left) CEO of SK Incheon Petrochem Choi Yun-seok and officials from the agencies signed a business agreement to execute the nationwide EnviRun Campaign. / (Right) After signing the business agreement, volunteers had the EnviRun activity together in the areas around Ahamdo Coast Park in Incheon Metropolitan City.
Through 246 Korea Volunteer Center’s branch offices, the campaign recruited individual and group volunteers who are interested in environmental protection activities to vitalize the nationwide EnviRun campaign. Moreover, by utilizing the Korea Volunteer Center’s communication channels for the PR, including their social media and the official website, the nationwide EnviRun campaign ran various events, shared thoughts of excellent participants, and continually emphasized the importance of the campaign.
The Korea Coast Guard and its branch offices also planned and promoted the joint EnviRun campaign where their staff, related organizations in the local community, and individual and group volunteers participated all together. Through this promotion, 315 Korea Coast Guard staffs participated in the campaign 7 times in total and collected 9 metric tons of marine garbage, to protect the ocean.
▲ Staffs of the Korea Coast Guard, members of SK Innovation’s subsidiaries, related organizations in the local community, and individual and group volunteers joined hands together and participated in the joint EnviRun activity.
03 | The nationwide EnviRun campaign, a small change changes the world
Through the expanded 2022 nationwide EnviRun campaign, a total of 1,195 tons of waste was collected by a total of 278,498 citizens, and it produced an effect that was equivalent to reducing about 234 tons of carbon emission (0.84 kg per capita).
In addition, based on the performance data collected by the plogging application of Korea Volunteer Center, from September 2021, when the EnviRun campaign first began, to November 2022, the campaign produced significant results in environmental protection. The campaign, which at first was only thought to be an activity to pick up litter in public, actually showed a possibility of drawing out a tremendous change for environmental protection, including marine environment protection, enhanced city safety and hygiene level of citizens, and greenhouse gas emissions reduction effect.
On top of that, as picking up garbage is an easy-to-do activity and thus lowers barriers to participation, the nationwide EnviRun campaign not only induced a change in people’s awareness and small habits in their lives to become more eco-friendly, but also encouraged their continuous interest and will to participate in climate crisis responding activities. Such changes were explicitly revealed in the results of the survey conducted by the Korea Volunteer Center on 1,300 EnviRun participants.
Firstly, after participating in the EnviRun campaign, people became more active to pick up litter outdoors as they started noticing garbage in their daily life that they had hardly noticed before.
Moreover, there was a response saying participants became more refrained from using disposable products, which mostly become waste. Another response from participants claimed that they started purchasing and consuming products with recyclable or eco-friendly certification. Therefore, the survey implied a significant change in EnviRun participants’ lifestyles that they started not producing any waste from the first place in their daily lives.
Lastly, the nationwide EnviRun campaign was a window to give opportunities to citizens to participate in various activities for the response to the climate crisis. To back up this claim, the survey results showed that there was a 25% increase on average in the response of participants claiming that they used this EnviRun campaign as a stepping stone to participate in various activities for environmental protection provided by related organizations. In other words, the EnviRun campaign gave a positive influence on improved awareness and increased interest of citizens regarding the climate crisis and environmental protection.
Throughout 2022, more than 270,000 citizens not only in Korea but also in every single corner of the globe joined the EnviRun campaign to make the world green. The campaign, which is for everyone, will continue to spread the message, “a big change for our planet’s environment begins with a small action”, in 2023 as well.