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Nielsen Earth Week 2021: Environmental Justice and Our Green Actions

Five days, 17 countries, 6,400+ volunteers—our Nielsen teams came together for our eighth annual Earth Week in April 2021, marking our second year of virtual celebrations. Throughout every Earth Week, we mindfully and vigilantly find ways to enhance, expand and elevate our ongoing green efforts, thanking our planet and the many social and environmental activists who have come before us.

Once again, during this global call-to-action, we focused on expanding our understanding of what our “environment” encompasses. With crisis situations such as the pandemic and the ongoing effects of climate change—both of which have disproportionate impacts on marginalized communities including women, low-income and Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC)—our conversations have moved toward the health of the individual, the community and our planet. Knowing how deeply climate and social impact are connected, this Earth Week we created dialog and action around environmental justice and the intersectionality of social and environmental activism, and tied the stories of our green actions with social issues of human rights, gender justice, racial equity and quality of all life. We encouraged building a climate justice movement through environmental, climate and energy justice webinars, provided resources around documentaries and books on relevant  topics and highlighted local and global organizations working in this space. Emphasizing the power of individual activism, our people also shared #MyClimateJusticePledges throughout the week on Nielsen’s social media pages.  

“There is still so much happening and so much to be done,” said Yamini Dixit, Director, Corporate Citizenship, Nielsen. “Creating a just and equitable world continuously demands of us to address the effects of climate change head-on! Today, we pause and honor all the grassroots advocates who keep the environmental movement alive and acknowledge every life impacted by our collective human triumphs and missteps. Tomorrow, we get back to work and march on!”

The health and security of our people and their communities are of utmost importance to Nielsen. Our virtual and socially distanced initiatives continued this year with online volunteering, green efforts at home such as gardening, composting and energy efficiency projects, and supporting neighbors and communities, all with the guidance to follow local safety protocols. In spite of the ongoing challenges with COVID-19, and the internal changes with the sale of NielsenIQ in early March, our teams still stepped up with great fervor.

To commemorate moments of respite and rejuvenation that nature has offered us, despite the challenging and isolating moments of the pandemic year, our Nielsen people shared their stories through a “My Outdoor Moment” photo challenge. Five winners made donations towards the Nielsen Global Support Fund and various GlobalGiving projects that are meaningful to them.

Nielsen employees also found ways to safely connect and collaborate throughout the week. Our teams drove awareness campaigns with environmental experts speaking to local issues and solutions, led climate justice webinars with discussions highlighting the movement unique to their regions and organized “Say No to Plastic” as well as small team waste clean-up events. Our North America GREEN & CARES Business Resource Groups (BRG) initiated a “Spring Into Sustainability: Have You Cleaned Your Closet?” effort, driving both awareness around the impact of fast fashion and our purchase behavior on the environment, and action to reduce our environmental footprint from clothes consumption. The teams estimated over 200,000 gallons of water savings from clothing and linens that were donated through this event. 

On the other side of the globe, our Philippines Green & Cares BRGs led a “Guardians of the Environment” initiative, creating teams named after their mythology, representing nature—volcano (Magayon), mountain (Dumakulem), sea (Magwayen), sun (Apolaki) and forest (Diwata)—and led different events throughout the week. From making costumes from recycled materials portraying Gods and Goddesses defending Earth, to partnering with a local organization called Gising Gising to support Filipino farmers, the teams found innovative ways to create connection, action and impact. 

“I am inspired by the creativity and generosity of our Nielsen employees, who found ways to celebrate the gifts of nature while advocating for greater environmental equity and a healthier planet for future generations,” said Shannon Coyne Rosado, Manager, Corporate Citizenship, Nielsen and Director, Grantmaking, Nielsen Foundation.

Nielsen’s environmental journey now continues beyond Earth Week as our BRGs and teams take forward the energy, momentum and ideas created during this week, to further the fight for climate justice and equity. 

Learn more about Nielsen’s Corporate Citizenship journey and environmental impact in the Global Responsibility Report and the Environmental Policy & Guidelines Across Functions