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by Vault Consulting Editors | April 18, 2011


In honor of Earth Day, Consult THIS is highlighting efforts in environmental sustainability made by 5 consulting firms that we feel deserve special recognition. Whether these efforts resulted in historic achievements in the field of sustainability (some did) or were just plain interesting (see below), each of these big players spurned the bottom line to make a difference to our planet Earth.

 Day 1: Deloitte

Tanzania's Eastern Arc mountains.

The Rubeho Forest in Tanzania is an ancient wilderness of spectacular complexity. Dense rainforest covers much of the landscape, and the region's Rubeho Mountains have long sheltered the ecosystem's awesome diversity of life—so effectively, in fact, that the region has been referred to as the 'Galapagos of Africa'. In the last ten years alone, a handful of new species unique to Rubeho have been discovered by those intrepid enough to brave its inner sanctums.

One such species, shown here, is Nectophrynoides deloittei. In 2005, this miniature amphibian was discovered by researchers working on behalf of the African Rainforest Conservancy (ARC), an organization that promotes conservation by empowering local communities to preserve the ecosystems in which they live. And yes, you read that strange Latin name right: Nectophrynoides deloittei is the world's first amphibian named after a consultancy (god I hope this is true).

Nectophrynoides deloittei.

Deloitte, it turns out, raised £200,000 in 2010 for the ARC cause, a remarkable donation that has empowered ARC to carry out its noble ventures with renewed commitment. Through a combined effort of both fundraising and volunteering, the Deloitte Rainforest Conservation Project achieved its goal to bring new resources to a campaign that has already achieved so much.

To date, ARC is responsible for the planting of more than 10 million trees in Rubeho, part of an initiative to preserve a rainforest system roughly equivalent in size to New Jersey.

"At Deloitte, we believe it is our responsibility to show leadership in tackling the environmental challenges that face us all," said Heather Hancock, Deloitte's Innovation and Branding leader. "It is a rare honor that ARC have chosen to name a newly discovered species from the Rubeho region for our firm, and one we will cherish."

Hancock called Deloitte's efforts "a pioneering move" for the firm, a sentiment clearly echoed by the bestowment of ARC's "rare honor". "By empowering those living amidst the forest—endowing them with project ownership—we have helped the local people remain invested in preserving their natural heritage for decades to come," said Carter Coleman, president of ARC. "The Deloitte Rainforest Conservation Project is a great example of this, and we are delighted to honor Deloitte UK this year with the name of a new species."

For more information:
Leap year for DeloitteVault's CSR Blog: Deloitte on Sustainability

Explore these excellent sites:
African Rainforest Conservancy (ARC)
Tanzania Forest Conservation Group (TFCG), ARC's field partner in Tanzania

Photos: TFCG, Deloitte


Filed Under: Consulting