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Going green with the Gecko

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(July 31, 2017 -- CHEVY CHASE, Md.) -- Most of us by now are familiar with the iconic spokes-gecko that is the commercial face of GEICO. Yet, the Gecko isn’t all that is green there. The company is also known for its environmentally-friendly business practices.

In addition to recycling, water and energy conservation in its offices, plus paperless billing and policy distribution, GEICO also requires its participating GEICO Auto Repair Xpress body shops?

Since the Maryland Chamber of Commerce member company was founded in 2003, the environmental and safety training program has provided safety and pollution prevention training specific to the auto body repair industry. The aim here is to keep employees safe on the job as well as promote safe handling of auto body repair chemicals like paint and antifreeze, keeping shop chemicals from contaminating the environment.

All newly hired claims staff must be trained before they enter any work areas, and the whole staff is retrained each year to stay up-to-date on standards. 

“We’re enthusiastic about playing our part to help protect the environment,” said Assistant Vice President of Claims bill DeGrocco on the company’s web page devoted to the initiatives. “We know that those repair facilities are safer for our customers, our employees, and our environment.” 

GEICO also offers tips to conserve energy and protect the environment, empowering its customers, along with anyone who visits the site, with things they can do to help the environment. Tips are divided into categories for where you can conserve: your car, your house, your yard, and even while you do business.  

The company, headquartered in Chevy Chase, Maryland, considers environmental stewardship important enough to rise to very high levels of corporate culture. According to the Maryland Green Registry, GEICO’s corporate green steering committee involves executives at the senior-, vice- and assistant vice president levels. It addresses everything from paperless workflow to environmentally careful purchasing. Its buildings are equipped with high-efficiency lighting, including motion sensors that turn lights on only when people are in the room, and turn them off when the room is empty.

GEICO even offers carpools and subsidized public transportation options for employees as an incentive to reduce traffic and vehicle emissions. Its profile on the Maryland Green Registry says more than a quarter of its Maryland employees take advantage of those options.

The efforts pay off not just for the environment, but for corporate reputation, as well. In 2015, GEICO was awarded the Excellence in Safety and Pollution Prevention Award by S/P2.