Since the mid-18th century, it’s been an odd American tradition to pinch anyone not wearing green on St. Patty’s Day. Presumably, this stems from the old Irish belief that leprechauns, who pinch anyone they can see, can’t actually see you if you’re wearing green. So in theory, we pinch to warn and remind each other about the leprechauns (but more likely we do it because it’s fun).

Here at Esurance, however, we always have our green on — so to speak — and not just to avoid a little pinch either. As a green car insurance company, we’ve been committed to conscientious business practices from the get-go. And more than a decade later, we’re still at it.

What does it mean to be a green car insurance company? To us, it means offsetting electricity use in our offices, using hybrid claims vehicles, forming eco sponsorships, planting trees, printing double-sided, implementing office recycling programs, and much more. In celebration of dear ol’ St. Patrick, we thought we’d share a few of our green “stripes.”

Tree plantings (well, duh)

In 2005, we began planting trees in and around our associates’ communities to compensate for the paper that’s inevitably used in day-to-day office life. Since then, we’ve partnered with numerous green orgs to plant more than 92,000.

In addition to all their other cool benefits, trees can be a plus from a business perspective as well. Recent studies indicate that trees enhance traffic safety by making a street look narrower, which helps to slow drivers down. Reduced speed, especially in residential areas, means fewer accidents. And that means better auto insurance rates for our customers.

So why not plant a whole bunch?

Green repair shops

All of our E-star-affiliated auto repair facilities are EPA/OSHA certified. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) have long maintained strict pollution-prevention and worker-safety regulations for auto repair shops.

Tons of carbon offsets (literally)

We work with NativeEnergy to offset 100 percent of the electricity used in our offices as well as the carbon emissions from our fleet of hybrids. We currently do this as a supporter of the Laurelbrook Farm Compost Project. Our support of this family-owned Connecticut farm helps provide vital funding for more efficient and reliable separation technology that will avoid methane production. This project is estimated to prevent more than 15,000 tons of greenhouse gas pollution over the next 10 years.

Save a Windshield, Plant a Tree

In 2009, in a partnership with HSG, we launched the Save a Windshield, Plant a Tree program to plant one tree for every windshield claim that results in repair instead of replacement.

Not only does this help keep old windshields (25 lbs each) out of landfills, it also saves energy: Producing one ton of glass requires 15.2 million BTUs. So far more than 12,546 customers have opted to have their windshields repaired instead of replaced and consequently have (or will soon have) a tree planted in their name.

Through these initiatives and many more, we’re working daily to be a green car insurance company. So if you’re an Esurance customer and forgot to wear green today, don’t sweat it…tell any would-be pinchers you’ve got green car insurance. And if you’re not an Esurance customer (and not a leprechaun), get a free, online, totally green auto insurance quote.

And no matter where you are, have a Happy St. Patty’s Day!

Additional resources

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about Heidi

Heidi brings 11 years’ experience to her role as Esurance’s copywriting manager. Writer, editor, and all around wordsy, she was content when content wasn’t cool. Also, she likes old-school country.