Cool Choices' April 2012 newsletter, Outcomes, is now available! 
Cool Choices Logo
Vegetarian Cookbooks at one of Gundersen Lutheran Health System's Meatless Monday Potlucks Where Players Earned Points While Enjoying Delicious Food

Pilot Project Gundersen Lutheran Health System 

 Cool Choices launched our second pilot with Gundersen Lutheran Health System mid-November, 2011.  A video description of the online version of the game was shared with employees to guide them in this effort which resulted in a total annual estimation of 1.57+ million lbs of CO2 avoided.  The program was in place for a total of four months ending mid-March, 2012.  For a complete breakdown of
Gundersen Lutheran Health System results, look HERE

Climate, Mind & Behavior Symposium 2012 - Garrison Institute

Kathy was invited to present at the Garrison Institute's Climate, Mind & Behavior Symposium in February. covered the symposium and highlighted Cool Choices' approach in 3 Ways IT Can Support Greener Behaviors.

MIRON Post-Game Survey:  Conversation is King
by Raj Shukla, Program Manager 

The Energy Center of Wisconsin just concluded a post-game study of iChoose - the game Cool Choices deployed at Miron Construction.  The short version:  it worked.  

Of the insights, the following six shown through:  Read on!

Change Can Happen!
Need some information, guidance, and tools to Facilitate Change?

Interested in Playing at Your Site?

View the latest Results!

"Conservation and energy sustainability has become a common topic of conversation in  We've been inspiring each other and sharing old practices and new ones.  Thanks for the game- it's been fun!"

~Gundersen Lutheran Health System employee


Kathy Kuntz, Executive Director

Nestled in a monastery overlooking the Hudson River, the Garrison Institute offers a unique perspective on addressing climate change issues via the Climate, Mind, and Behavior symposium.  Sessions included time for reflection and journaling.  More important, the organizers deliberately set aside time for attendees and presenters to meet in small groups and synthesize the information presented.  Between the meetings with my small group and other informal conversations over meals, I participated in a three-day dialogue about the challenges and bright spots in the work to mitigate climate change.

If you are paying attention to the national and international discussions about climate change it is easy to feel despair. I left the Garrison Institute, though, with both a strong sense of urgency and some renewed optimism.  Cool Choices is part of a community of scholars and activists and program implementers working on these issues.  We have organized our games to help individuals see how their small actions can add up across whole communities and, in a similar way, the Garrison Institute reminded me that Cool Choices' work adds up with the work of other like-minded efforts around the world.

In this issue of Outcomes, we share some of the lessons we are learning from our programs.  We hope our findings inspire others to try new things and that, collectively, we can continue to facilitate environmentally sustainable actions across multiple populations. 

Neses;klkdlfkal;;sdfkakweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeof 2012, I cannot help but smile at the progress Cool Choices has made in 2011.  A year ago we had a theory about behavior change and commitments from two amazing companies, both of which wanted to see real employee engagement around environmental sustainability.  Now, twelve months later, Miron Construction is delighted with the impact our approach has had on their employees and we are working hard to ensure that the employees and leadership at Gundersen Lutheran Health Systems will experience similar results.  Today, we can point to hundreds of employees who have made often little changes that have added up to substantive savings and meaningful reductions in greenhouse gas emissions.
As we scale our approach, we must optimize the efficiencies while maintaining the magic that made participation fun, popular, and easy at these first two locations.  We are exploring a variety of strategies and innovations that make the game more cost-effective for our corporate partners and reduce overall implementation costs while offering greater benefit to the employees. 
Cool Choices’ approach is empowering people to make changes and then to feel so good about those changes.  It is powerful stuff.
Gundersen Lutheran Health System Employees Created Supply Recycling Areas to Earn Points Playing Our Game.  Their Efforts Also Saved Corporate Dollars & Resources

Cool Choices is working on several new and exciting partnerships!  We are incorporating what we learned at Miron Construction and Gundersen Lutheran Health System to strengthen our strategies for making environmental sustainability fun, easy, & social.  We expect to announce new partnerships in the coming months.  Visit our site often to learn more!

Reducing Waste:  New Life for Hospital Surgical Wrap

Gundersen Lutheran Health System has teamed-up with the volunteer group, RSVP to transform the blue wrap used to wrap sterile instruments. Instead of ending-up in the landfill, this wrap has been recycled and transformed into very popular tote bags, aprons, and more!

Cool Choices & Gundersen Lutheran Health System:  Round 2! 

Cool Choices learned a lot during its first implementation at Gundersen Lutheran, including that the employees and leaders have an appetite for more environmentally sustainable actions.  We are working with the Gundersen sustainability team to plan for a second round of the game.  This time, we will leverage momentum from enthusiastic first-round players and provide summertime opportunities for savings to both returning and first-time players.  Stay Tuned!

In conjunction with the K-12 Energy Education Program (KEEP), Cool Choices is partnering with teachers and students at Waunakee High School to develop and implement an initiative to reduce the number of single-occupancy-vehicles pulling up to the high school next fall. 

Two teachers conceived the program based on concerns about the driving patterns at their school.  They noted that many students drive to campus even though they live on bus routes or within walking and biking distance.  The teachers have generated tremendous (and enthusiastic) student support from a variety of student clubs for addressing the issue.  The effort is tied to Waunakee's Green and Healthy Schools initiative and also involves classroom learning in multiple disciplines. 

Cool Choices provided the teachers with a small grant to help them address barriers to more sustainable transportation like bike rack shortages and we are also consulting with the teachers and students on strategies for influencing behaviors.  KEEP staff are supporting the curriculum development and also providing the logistical support.  When the program launches next fall, Cool Choices will help track student and teacher behaviors via our game software.  Watch for updates after the project launches in fall, 2012!
Our Mission

Cool Choices’ mission is to inspire and assist
individuals, communities, and businesses
to achieve meaningful reductions in
greenhouse gas emissions through
voluntary action
Cool Choices®
222 N Midvale Blvd, Suite 29
Madison, WI 53705
Phone 608.443.4270
Fax 608.443.4278  
APRIL 2012