A volunteer plants a tomato while building a community garden on plot of land next to Charcoal Park, a community store, April 22, 2010 in Oakland, California. A handful of volunteers came out to build a community garden in honor of Earth Day.
Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Why Google is green today — and how Atlantans can be, too

To commemorate World Environment Day on Monday, June 5, Google’s homepage went green, leading users to a report showing its commitment to the environment.

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In addition to becoming the world’s largest corporate buyer of renewable power, Google’s employees launched a project dedicated to making it easy for interested homeowners to connect with solar providers, used Street View cars to collect data on air pollution and applied machine learning to ultimately use 50 percent less energy than the industry average.

But you don’t have to be at Google to make your mark on the environment. There are plenty of opportunities to help the planet from right here in Atlanta.

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Here are five green organizations to join or volunteer with in Atlanta:

In this file photo from 2014, Brian Williams (left) demonstrates the correct way to plant a tree during an event to plant trees along the Atlanta Beltline.

The Nature Conservancy

Mission: “Protecting the lands and waters on which all life depends.”

This global organization focuses on conserving habitats in more than 70 countries, including the United States. In Georgia, The Nature Conservancy aims to protect the state’s woods, waters and coast. 

The Georgia chapter will soon be looking for land stewards and is open to digital volunteers as well. Check the state volunteer page or contact the chapter directly at 
(404) 873-6946.

Trees Atlanta

Mission: “Dedicated to protecting Atlanta’s urban forest through planting, conservation, and education.”

If you’re passionate about Atlanta’s tree loss and want to help keep the city green, Trees Atlanta offers both individual and group volunteer opportunities.

Meet like-minded folks on Saturday mornings and start digging the world a better place, lead a group project or help prepare for an educational event on a weekday.

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The Trees Atlanta volunteer page offers more details, but you can sign up here.

Hands On Atlanta

Mission: Tackling Greater Atlanta's most pressing needs by igniting a passion for service and creating lifelong community volunteers. 

Hands On Atlanta incorporates a network of volunteer organizations to help volunteers find the right fit for them. Whether you have a few hours, are flexible on timings or just want to share your skills to make a difference, there’s something you can do.

The Opportunity Calendar features upcoming volunteer options, including planting trees with Trees Atlanta and helping keep Piedmont Park beautiful, among several others.

Just click on the opportunity you’re interested in for more detailed instructions.

EarthShare Georgia

Mission: Connecting people to trusted nonprofit organizations dedicated to conserving and protecting our air, land and water.

To get notified about EarthShare’s many volunteer opportunities, all linked with local organizations such as Trees Atlanta, sign up for the organization newsletter and follow EarthShare for Georgia on Facebook.

You can also email queries to info@earthsharega.org.

Chattahoochee Riverkeeper

Mission: To keep watch over our waters and protect “Georgia’s greatest river,” ensuring that we all have enough clean water now and in the future.

If you want to help preserve the Chattahoochee River and its watershed, CRK’s calendar displays a variety of opportunities for a variety of ages, skillsets and for varying time commitments. 

Whether you’d prefer working a festival or cleaning up the river, sign up to be a part of the solution at chattahoochee.org.

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