1% for the Planet recently asked me to write about why I committed to their movement. Here are my thoughts.

Collegiate Peaks Wilderness

My dad, Jon DeCrette, camping below Buffalo Peaks in Collegiate Peaks Wilderness, Colorado – 2002

My name is Paul DeCrette. Since 1998, I have run BlueChannel, a small web development and consulting firm. I enjoy my work, provide livable wages and good benefits to a few employees, and genuinely care about my clients. But I am not changing the world through programming or email support!

I moved the business to Colorado in 2000 to take advantage of our state’s beautiful and precious outdoor spaces. I wanted to spend time with my beautiful wife Nicole and raise my children in clean mountain air. When I took on Mick Jeanne – a long-time employee – as a co-owner a few years ago, we jointly acknowledged that the world is bigger than us and precious to us. We agreed to put some money where our environmental mouths are. After all, talk is cheap, but change is expensive! Good causes need financial support.

1% for the Planet is a good fit. It connects us with like-minded businesses and demands a simple, honest, and manageable annual giving goal – and one that changes as means change. “A portion of profits donated to charity,” or “10% of profits donated to this cause” is meaningless; any business owner knows profits can be manipulated by compensation and other accounting tricks. But when you donate a percentage of your gross sales as reported on your tax return, the number is concrete. For BlueChannel, this number, albeit small, was hard to swallow at first. It has since grown year over year, and now it is just built into our business model and lives. And while we would continue to give even if this was not true, the exposure we receive from our annual contributions has made this commitment financially worthwhile as well. Doing the right thing can pay.

Colorado Environmental Coalition has recently merged with Colorado Conservation Voters to become Conservation Colorado. Priorities include protecting public lands and wilderness areas – many of the same areas I backpacked and fell in love with after moving here. They also work to mitigate climate change and encourage pro-environmental legislation. Right now, they are active in trying to encourage rural Colorado utilities to increase their clean energy sources. Help the cause and take action to support SB 252 and related legislation today!

Republican, Democrat, or otherwise, you can’t do business on a dead planet. I encourage you to support an environmental cause, and if you need ideas, 1% for the Planet and Conservation Colorado are indeed worthy.