Red Oak Realty, a prominent independent brokerage in California’s Bay Area, announced Wednesday that it has gone green by buying carbon offsets and ensuring that its offices are officially certified as environmentally friendly.

The company’s newly announced green efforts fall into two categories. First, Red Oak has begun purchasing carbon offsets. The idea behind carbon offsets is that they allow a company to pay for carbon-reducing measures, such as planting trees, in an effort to counterbalance any pollution created via their business operations. In Red Oak’s case, a statement notes that the company’s carbon offsets will help fund programs focused on things such as landfill and mining gas, clean energy and animal waste.

Additionally, Red Oak will help its clients purchase carbon offsets, the statement notes.

The second component of the company’s environmental efforts was achieving “certified” green status from the California Green Business Network (CGBN). Some of Red Oak’s offices previously had that certification, but now the entire company has the CBGN’s blessing. Red Oak achieved certified green status via “a thorough 18-month process of updating every component of the facilities, from faucets to light fixtures, waste collection, and more.”

The result of these efforts, according to the statement, is that Red Oak is now the Bay Area’s “only green-certified and carbon neutral” real estate company.

Red Oak’s announcement comes less than two weeks after the United Nations released a sprawling report on climate change. The report explores the ways that humans have contributed to modifications in various climate patterns, and ultimately concludes that negative impacts are all but assured now.

Those type of findings have increasingly prompted major companies such as Amazon and Google to launch various environmental initiatives. Climate change has also become a growing topic of debate in the real estate community, while companies such as Redfin and RealScout have started including climate and weather data in their products.

Vanessa Bergmark

Wednesday’s announcement positions Red Oak on the front lines of the climate discussion in real estate. And in a the brokerage’s statement, CEO Vanessa Bergmark argued that “companies have a profound opportunity to help build a more sustainable future.”

“These initiatives make our company more ‘green’ and are imperative for the future of the East Bay, world, and entire planet,” Bergmark continued. “We hope other real estate companies across the globe will join us to repair detrimental and environmentally toxic practices.”

Email Jim Dalrymple II

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