26 Sep How to make your business or place of work greener
Guest blog written by Ruby Clarkson.
As the world spirals towards climate disaster, we are beginning to see attitudes changing. It has been a long time coming and whilst we can all do our bit to help to try to reduce the damage that we are doing to our planet, one of the most effective ways that a difference can be made is through business.
Whether you have an already established business who is changing the way that they do things for a greener effect on the environment or if the very essence of your new business is to be a green business, it all makes a difference. We are seeing more and more green businesses in the UK – which is great for both British business as well as the environment.
Bearing this in mind, here are some things that the UK’s top green businesses this year are doing, that can inspire you to push the boat out a little further in your business to help our Earth:
Check your EPC recommendations
Commercial properties must have an Energy Performance Certificate when they are rented or sold. This will give you details of recommendations of what you can do to make the property more energy-efficient. Getting an EPC in London, or wherever you are based, is easy and can save you both a heap of wasted energy and, consequently money if you follow their recommendations.
As people are becoming more aware of the need to reduce our waste, the unnecessary packaging of products is increasingly becoming a focal point. We are seeing more and more businesses trying to embrace the ‘zero waste’ concept – either as part of their business or as the business itself. Refills are becoming increasingly popular – whether it is food such as flour, grains or tea, or other products like soap and washing powder – all eco-friendly, of course.
Quality not Quantity
As part of their attempts at cutting down on waste, reducing consumerism and bringing about general mindfulness about what we have (and throw away), we are seeing more and more businesses concentrating more on quality and less on quantity. This includes the clothing companies who are cutting down the number of collections that they produce each year, concentrating on giving consumers excellent products which can be used over and over again instead of the almost disposable products which we have grown used to.
We are seeing a rise in the general awareness of businesses (especially in retail) who are seeking to understand better where the components or ingredients of their products come from. Looking at sustainability, eco-friendliness and human rights of those involved in the supply chain has never been more important for customers – and therefore retailers. This goes across all aspects of your business.
Create an Eco-Friendly Workplace
Creating a workplace which is eco-friendly won’t just win you brownie points with your more eco-conscious staff, your customers – and, most importantly, the planet will also thank you. Take a holistic approach to making your workplace ‘greener’ – you can think about ensuring that as little paper is used as possible, you recycle as much as possible, swap disposable cups for real glasses and mugs, use low energy lightbulbs, think about using sustainable energy, use bamboo pens, encourage staff to bring in plants and encourage awareness in staff – urge them to walk or cycle to work, change their disposal routines and turn off computers and lights at night.
Support Eco-Friendliness outside of your Business
Whether it is donating a percentage of your profits to tree planting, or supporting local environmental awareness campaigns, supporting what is going on outside of your business is a great way to reach out further than the limits of your business – and it’ll give you a great reputation too! You could also become a leader in your field for trying to find industry-specific eco-alternatives to aspects in your area, and carbon off-setting is also an option until you can!
Encourage your Customers
We are seeing more and more high street retailers offering recycling services free to their customers to try to encourage them to recycle. Recycling schemes not only help customers to recycle their used or unwanted goods, but they also allow retailers to get old materials that you could use for your own recycling projects.
As an individual and a business, there is almost always more that you can be doing to help the planet – whether it is something that you are doing yourself, or by supporting and encouraging others. We still have a long way to go to save the planet, but with more and more people taking it seriously and trying to change, there is hope that we will be able to succeed.
Photo source - Pinterest.
Ruby Clarkson is a freelance writer who is passionate about our planet and the animals that we share it with. When she is not writing, she is either out in the garden or wrapped up in a blanket with a good book. Accompanied by a bar of chocolate of course.