How to reduce the environmental impact of your business

How to reduce the environmental impact of your business

 Are you planning to be more committed to reducing the environmental impact of your business? Congratulations! Here’s how to do it! 

With consumers becoming more eco-aware than ever before, all businesses must adapt their practices to reduce their environmental impact. There are simple steps your business can take that can significantly impact better protecting Mother Earth. 

Here are a few green practices that your business can use to reduce its impact on our environment. 

Be energy-efficient

One of the best things your business can do for the environment is to reduce your energy waste. Energy waste has a major impact on our planet, leading to huge levels of air pollution and many other consequences. Luckily, even small changes can make a big difference in the long term when it comes to energy efficiency. 

Maybe your business doesn’t have enough profit to invest in sustainable energy sources. That’s fine. You can look at this as a goal for the future. But, there are many other small steps you can take that can mean a lot in reducing your carbon footprint on our planet, including: 

  • Using a programmable thermostat and setting it a few degrees higher in summer and a few degrees lower in the cold season. 
  • Replacing lightbulbs in your workplace with energy-efficient LED bulbs. 
  • Turning the lights off in rooms/ buildings that are not in use. 
  • Unplugging all electronics when they are not in use. Encourage your employees to completely shut down their devices before going home. 
  • Using energy-saving appliances like computers, printers, fridges, etc. 

Encourage employees to be more eco-friendly at work

Building an eco-friendly project requires an environmental permitting consultant who can direct you in making the right decisions. They can help you evaluate risks and manage every detail related to your project site. You have no control over how environmentally friendly your employees are in their free time. Yet, you may have something to say when it comes to how they protect the environment while they are at work. 

Including your employees in your efforts to reduce your environmental impact is critical if you really want to make a difference. Every packaging that is thrown away in the recycling bin, every single-use plastic cup that isn’t used, and every light turned off when people are out of that room matters. So, train your employees to commit to such small gestures that can mean big for our planet. 

First, educate your employees on the current environmental issues and the positive impact of their efforts to be more eco-friendly. Next, create specific rules in the workplace that focus on reducing waste, energy, recycling, and other green practices and ask your employees to respect them. You can even set up a reward scheme to reward those workers who genuinely take sustainability seriously. 

Go paperless

Another small eco-friendly change you can make that can significantly impact better protecting our planet is to reduce paper waste as much as possible. And, the good news is that it has never been easier to use technology to go paperless in today’s digitalized world. 

Data shows that roughly 70% of office waste consists of paper. That is because most businesses handle hundreds of printed documents, contracts, and many others. But you can change that in your workplace. 

Going paperless is as simple as relying more on technology for managing your documents and files. Keeping your files in an electronic format, storing your data in cloud storage rather than in physical storage, and digitalizing most of your business practices are good ways to start to reduce paper waste in your office. 

What’s more, if you go paperless, you will also reduce toner cartridge waste, which is another threat that our environment deals with these days. You can also implement a policy of reduced or no printing at all in your workplace. Eventually, your employees will get used to managing all business data and documents in a digital format. 

Reduce, reuse, recycle

Business waste is a significant problem for our planet. From paper to aluminum/ steel cans, cardboard, glass, packaging, electronic equipment, office furniture, and others, these are all examples of business waste. 

Now, every business generates waste. But, the problem appears when you don’t make sure that it gets recycled properly and allow it to end in the landfill, polluting our environment. So, figuring out how to properly manage your waste is a must. 

There are many waste management strategies you can implement, depending on the amount of waste your business generates: 

  • You can invest in waste recycling equipment like waste compactors and ballers for different waste types, including paper, plastic, polystyrene, glass, and aluminium. 
  • You can ask employees to avoid using single-use products like cups or cutlery. 
  • You can purchase used office furniture instead of new one. 
  • You can donate your old electronics and office furniture locally to prolong their life.  

Encourage remote working  

Remote working isn’t a new concept. It has been around for some time now, but it wasn’t until recently that people realized its benefits in reducing air pollution. With more people working and studying from home, environmental experts have found that air pollution has significantly decreased during the first months of the COVID-19 pandemic. So, it’s clear that encouraging your employees to work remotely would also reduce your business’s impact on the planet by cutting down on emissions generated through commuting. 

Now, if the nature of your business doesn’t allow remote work, you can at least implement flexible working. This means that you can allow your employees to have a more flexible work schedule in a way that allows them to commute more efficiently. 

For example, flexible working can allow your employees to avoid commuting during rush hours, generating even more emissions while stuck in the traffic. It can also allow them to use ride-sharing solutions. 

Source locally

Like all businesses, yours also needs supplies or raw materials for manufacturing. But, the truth is that transporting these resources from your suppliers to your location uses a lot of energy and creates emissions. That is why near sourcing can help reduce some of the impacts. 

Transporting the supplies you need from a closer location will reduce environmental impact and save your business money. 

Get customers involved

Last but not least, you should also get your customers involved in your environmentally-friendly efforts. Find out that today’s consumers desire to be part of such initiatives, many reporting that they are more willing to spend more on products from businesses with green practices

You can get your customers involved by asking them to recycle the packaging of your products. And, you can also offer some rewards to those who do that. For example, you can reward them with a free product for a few empty bottles they bring back after finishing the content.