Although 2021 has been a strange year for us all, we continue to work hard in all we do, including making a conscious effort to help the environment. Over the course of the last two years, we, as a business, have made it our mission to reduce our carbon footprint and our impact on the climate.
As an SME, this can be challenging, which is why we’ve chosen to share with you our experience, to show that small businesses can in fact make a real difference just by committing to a few small changes. This blog post will highlight the adjustments we have made so far and offer tips on how you can do the same.
We realised from the beginning that we wouldn’t be able to change the world ourselves, but by starting small and tackling one thing at a time, we’ve already been able to make a huge difference. Here are some of the changes we have made on our journey so far:
1. Promoting recycling / reusing at work
While this was already a widely practised principle within the workplace, we have become even more diligent in making sure that we reuse as much as we can before recycling, therefore reducing waste.
2. Investment in energy efficient computer hardware and appliances
When it comes to replacing out of date software and equipment, we’ve opted for energy efficient solutions which, as well as providing a longer working life for our machines, reduces our energy usage and costs.
3. Use of energy efficient lighting
Another simple change, but one which works! Energy efficient LED bulbs produce zero toxic elements, require less light fixtures, and are up to 80% more efficient than alternative options.
4. Reduction of paper use
In the last two years alone, we have reduced our paper usage in the workplace by a significant 80%, an obvious, yet simple shift which has greatly reduced our carbon footprint.
5. Electronic communication
Similarly, we have replaced 75% of postal communications with electronic alternatives since 2019, reducing our impact on deforestation.
6. Reduce emissions
We have reduced emissions produced by business travel by 65% between 2019 – 2021. This is due to our investment in e-signature software, online communication tools and use of anti-money laundering client verification software.
7. Electric vehicle future commitment
As a team, we have pledged to invest in electric vehicles in the future as opposed to those ran by fossil fuels. This will ensure that our commute to work is part of our plans to reduce our carbon footprint.
8. Careful selection of energy providers
Over the last two years, we have made a shift to fossil fuel-free and renewable energy utility providers. Not only does renewable energy work to reduce air pollution, but our facilities need less maintenance and last longer.
9. Going green with our Pension scheme
We ensure that our pension scheme provider promotes climate emission reductions across their fund portfolio.
10. Using local suppliers and businesses
Sourcing locally means there is a shorter supply chain and that materials do not have to travel so far to reach us, therefore causing fewer carbon emissions.
Not only does partnering with local suppliers and businesses prove to be more environmentally friendly, but it also means we build stronger relationships and work alongside these businesses to provide the best service to our customers.
How you can get involved:
No matter how small your business, or what industry you specialise in, your commitment to the planet could make a real difference to your customers and your running costs. By starting small and making one positive change at a time, you could be part of the solution and help protect our planet.
There are several schemes and Government incentives that you, as a business, can be a part of. UK Business Climate Hub is one such initiative which enables businesses to be recognised by the United Nations Race to Zero campaign. By signing up, you receive tools and advice on how to tackle your business’ emissions and can share what you’re doing with a community of likeminded business owners.
This is a way to send a message to your customers that you are taking steps to do your part in addressing the climate emergency we all face.
Things you can do right now to cut your emissions
Going greener will look different for every business, but there are some simple steps you can take to achieve your goal:
- Educate yourself and your staff on why sustainability is crucial for businesses. You can use free tools such as Google Digital Garage.
- Cycle to work scheme
- Minimise waste from products and packaging
- Go paperless
- Use eco-friendly office supplies
Go Green this new year
There are many ways in which businesses can cut their carbon footprint – it only takes small changes, one step at a time to make a difference! Why not consider going green in 2022 and doing your bit to help our planet?
- We’ve Been Working to Reduce Our Carbon Footprint – and You Can Too! - December 21, 2021
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This post was written by Steph Roffey