Society has been concerned with saving the environment for a while now, with movements dedicated to shutting down fossil fuel generation and manufacturing methods. In 2022, all businesses are put under a microscope, and they need to demonstrate transparently exactly what they’re doing to protect the environment for future generations. Currently, 17% of all greenhouse gasses in the UK are produced by businesses, which shows that work needs to be done to bring this down. Every industry from construction to hospitality needs to change the way they operate. The following will discuss nine ways to go green and how businesses can demonstrate their positive impact on the environment.
If your business relies on car travel, whether that be for sales or traveling to different store locations, you should consider switching to an electric vehicle (EV). Electric cars are cheaper to operate, require less maintenance, and reduce our carbon emissions. However, as they haven’t been adopted by the mainstream, they can be quite expensive to purchase new. Therefore, you should take a look into leasing an electric car. To find out if electric car leasing is right for you, take the short quiz on Electrix, which contains a ton of other useful resources.
The amount of energy your business uses will depend entirely on its size. However, as a general average, businesses use around 20,000 kWh annually, which is considerably high. Therefore, business leaders need to put plans in place to reduce their usage, which will decrease their monthly overhead.
Offices use computers to complete their work, so it’s important to make sure they’re managed correctly. For example, you should activate the handy power management tools built into computers, which will help to save energy during times of low usage. When it comes to the money, doing this can save your business around £15 for every computer. As well as using power management, you should make sure that all unnecessary tech is powered down at night, which should include tills and signage.
Although we have LED lights paired with smart tech now, they still use energy that might not be needed. To reduce your light usage, you should increase the availability of natural light. To do this, you should strategically place your work areas to avoid employees having to work with the sun in their eyes and closing the blinds. If you have rooms without windows, for example, bathrooms, you should use motion sensors, which will help to cut energy costs.
Thanks to technology, there’s no need to print out stacks of paper for anything. Billing can all be taken care of electronically, with internet banking facilitating the transition to paperless business spaces. However, some people will want physical paper bills. Therefore, you should make the default option for billing paperless, with customers needing to opt-in for paper bills.
Operating a paperless business goes further than billing, thanks to cloud services and encryption techniques. We can easily create PDFs and send them for verification and signing online; services like DocuSign are dedicated to just that. As well as creating PDFs, various forms, surveys, and online ordering can all be carried out paperless.
Reducing the amount of water you use will go a long way toward reaching a green business status. In the kitchen, you can use a dishwasher and just do one load of washing a day, which saves each person filling the sink to wash their pots. If we pivot to the bathroom, installing a dual flush system and pushable taps will saves water.
You can go the extra mile with water-saving and collect rainfall in a water butt. You can use this water to nourish office plants and gardens. Further, you could use this water to flush the toilet, which would certainly show dedication to reducing water usage.
Work With Green Partners and Suppliers
Making green choices for your business doesn’t need to be hard work, and it can be as simple as choosing a green energy supplier. Over the last few years, there has been a rapid increase in the number of energy suppliers that boast generating power from sustainable sources including hydro, solar, and wind. You will find a healthy mix of businesses, with some of them offering 100% renewable and some achieving a mix.
Operating as a green business runs deeper than having eco-friendly energy suppliers. Beyond this, you should carry out research and find out how your other partners operate. Green partners can be anything from eco web hosters to suppliers that use raw materials. Ensuring that your entire network is operating eco-friendly will demonstrate that your business truly cares about the environment.
Green Commuting Schemes
Reducing the need for cars for traveling is a great way to reduce your business’ carbon footprint, and there are plenty of ways you can do this. For example, the Cycle to Work scheme offers discounts on certain bikes and parts, which allows staff to ditch the engine and get fit on the way to work. Alternatively, if you’ve got staff coming from the same area, you can initiate a car-sharing process.
Minimize the Need to Travel
Throughout the pandemic, almost all aspects of office-based work were carried out online, which is the direction many businesses are remaining in. Therefore, even if you’ve returned to the office, you can operate some of your business remotely, which can include meetings and training. Doing this will eliminate the need for people to commute to work for the sake of an hour.
Flush Your Space In Green
We’re not talking about painting your walls green. Instead, you should put plants in the working environment. NASA carried out a study in the 80s and found that plants are great at removing harmful toxins including formaldehyde, trichloroethylene, and benzene. Further, as we breathe out carbon dioxide, plants replenish the air with oxygen, which keeps us healthy. As well as keeping our lungs full of fresh air, plants are great for promoting productivity and wellness, which is a no-brainer in any business.
Recycling and Reusing
Recycling and reusing materials is an essential part of any business green policy. For example, if you operate a coffee shop, you can sell reusable cups with branding, and offer a discount for people that use them. Further, if you’re an office-orientated business, you can make sure you have proper recycling bins available. Even in the music industry, festivals like Rock for People in the Czech Republic, are promoting an eco-friendly environment by using electric vehicles and providing plenty of recycling hubs.
As well as recycling and reusing materials, you can work hard to minimize food wastage. For example, you can sell any cafeteria leftovers at the end of the day. Further, you can put a notice board up in the staffroom to facilitate the sharing of almost out-of-date food, which will save it from heading to landfill.
Businesses have a responsibility to be a beacon for positive change in the environment, and there are countless tactics to be utilized. Take a moment to look at the environment on a global scale and put a plan together that demonstrates that you are playing your part; customers are more likely to use an eco-friendly business in this day and age.