190 Enthusiastic Chroma ATE Employees Clean Up Beach, 780 Kilograms of Marine Waste Collected

190 Enthusiastic Chroma ATE Employees Clean Up Beach, 780 Kilograms of Marine Waste Collected

▲ 190 passionate volunteers gathered at the beach near the Puxin River estuary in Taoyuan, Taiwan, to collect 780 kilograms of marine waste.
July 15th, 2023
(From Business Today's ESG reporting)

As a typhoon loomed on the horizon, employees from leading automated test equipment maker Chroma ATE braved scorching temperatures of over 40 degrees Celsius (104°F) to participate in a beach cleaning event. On the 15th of July, at the Puxin River estuary in Taoyuan, Taiwan, Chroma ATE and partner company Dynascan rallied 190 employees to join the activity. Led by Chief of Sustainability Operations Paul Ying, the event aimed to instill an ocean-friendly mindset and sow the seeds of environmental awareness both in individual participants and throughout the company, in a bid to accelerate Chroma's goal of achieving carbon neutrality in its office locations by 2030.


As Taiwan sweltered in a heatwave, the global average temperature continued to reach record highs, spurred by El Niño and greenhouse gas emissions that started to accumulate from the Industrial Revolution. Researchers at the United States National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) recently reported that on July 3, 2023, the global average temperature surpassed 17.01°C (62.62°F) for the first time, setting a new high not seen since the 19th century. As the world experienced its hottest day, climate experts and scientists raised the alarm, warning that without significant countermeasures, this heating could spell a death sentence for both humanity and the biosphere.

Reducing carbon emissions has become an urgent issue that humanity must confront. As such, it has also become a new value indicator that goes beyond corporate growth. "Precision, reliability, and uniqueness are embedded in Chroma's DNA", said Paul Ying. "Twelve years ago, we took a forward-looking approach by positioning clean technology as the industry's future direction. We initiated comprehensive efforts in the renewables sector, encompassing LED, solar energy, electric vehicles, energy storage batteries, and smart grids. Our journey towards a greener Chroma began seven years ago when we launched Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives, responded to Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) advocacy, and made sustainability a shared value among Chroma employees".

Participating for Three Consecutive Years: Joining Hands Across Generations

In addition to their core business efforts, Chroma ATE has been participating in Business Today's "Project Blue 1095 - Repurposing Marine Waste into Eco-Friendly Slippers" for three consecutive years, this year successfully mobilizing 190 employees and their families. The initiative enabled participants of all shapes and sizes, ranging from 1 to 70 years old, to “plant the seeds of sustainability within their hearts". Extreme climate conditions have already brought catastrophic consequences to Southeast Asia, Africa, and Australia, even leading to the emergence of climate refugees. This is a global concern, and scientists have confirmed that plastic waste on beaches, when exposed to continuous sunlight, can produce greenhouse gases. In other words, beach cleaning is an effective strategy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.


Chroma’s 190 beach cleaning volunteers enjoyed an eye-opening workshop from the Haiyong Studio team. The founders of Haiyong Studio, Sally Kuo and Ren-Ping Chen, both graduates of the National Taiwan Ocean University, have research backgrounds in sea turtles and fishery, respectively. Concerned about worsening environmental pollution, they decided to dedicate themselves to ocean conservation, spreading the concept of environmental sustainability “wave by wave” to a wider audience. "In the past, I was responsible for caring for injured sea turtles. However, I realized that without reducing waste at the source or fundamentally changing our marine environment, our efforts to rehabilitate and release sea turtles would only result in waiting for the unfortunate day when they would ingest ocean garbage or plastic, leading to injury and rescue all over again", said Sally Kuo. Under Haiyong Studio's guidance, Chroma’s beach cleaning volunteers meticulously documented and sorted 780 kilograms (1720 lbs) of marine waste. Ten volunteers even offered to become International Coastal Cleanup (ICC) record keepers in Taiwan, compiling data from the beach cleaning event. They recorded the collection of 280 plastic bottles, 203 bottle caps, 303 straws, 88 food packaging bags, and other marine waste items.

Promoting the "Zero Carbon Office": Plastic Reduction as Daily Practice

As one Chroma employee expressed, "Despite the scorching weather, this is a problem caused by excessive human development, and it's up to us to make a change. We must take action and work together. In the future, when we go to the beach, I'll also rally my friends to clean up together". Many families participated in the event, collecting 780 kg of marine waste in just two hours. Chroma employees even brought plastic bottles from home to experience the turtle-shaped Returntle mobile recycling unit, which shreds and compresses plastic bottles to 1/20th of their original volume. For every four bottles deposited, participants received 1 Taiwanese dollar (NT), topping up their Chroma Eco EasyCards for a total of 30NT.

Heading the event from start to finish, Paul Ying emphasized that Chroma ATE has organized beach cleaning activities for three consecutive years, involving nearly a thousand participants and collecting over 2,000 kilograms of marine waste. Although the scale may seem small compared to the vast ocean's waste problem, it has prompted all Chroma employees to reflect on their daily waste management and recycling efforts. Chroma has been at the forefront of the move towards sustainability, introducing reusable eco-friendly cups and food containers in their headquarters six years before Taiwanese convenience stores launched similar campaigns. This initiative increased monthly resource recycling from 6.41 tons to 13.1 tons, achieving a recycling rate of over 57% and promoting a positive circular economy.

Garbage has never belonged in the ocean, and we must not let human convenience become the greatest threat to our planet's environment. Chroma employees have proven that environmental protection can start from our daily lives, as they continue to do their part to keep our planet healthy and habitable.