Consumers are holding businesses accountable for their impacts on the environment. Now, it’s not enough to have a great product— you need to produce it with minimal negative impacts on the natural world.
Fortunately, there are many actions businesses can take to improve their carbon footprint. Here are six ways businesses can protect the environment to ensure continuity for years to come.
One of the simplest ways to improve your company’s impact on the environment is to go paperless. For many businesses, this is more than just an eco-friendly strategy; it’s a smart operations strategy as well.
Make the switch to online faxing to cut back on thousands of wasted pieces of paper each year (see more on eFax.com). Implement cloud-based project management and communication tools to ensure everyone is on the same virtual page. By going paperless, you reduce the risk of losing important documents and wasting valuable resources by printing.
Fossil fuel consumption is one of the worst offenders when it comes to environmental sustainability. The further you travel, the worse it gets. The implications of excessive travel became apparent during the COVID-19 pandemic when the lack of air pollution made it possible to see Beijing from space for the first time in decades. Dolphins frolicked in the canals in Venice. The light, noise, and air pollution all decreased.
When the world reopens, consider sticking with virtual meetings as much as possible. Every little bit counts, especially for large organizations. Reducing travel saves time, costs, and the environment.
Use Energy-Efficient Appliances
Consider changing to energy-efficient appliances in your workspace. Change the lightbulbs to LED lights to help reduce your daily consumption. Add aerators to the faucets and low-flow toilets to dramatically reduce your water consumption.
If you need to replace larger appliances, look for Energy Star models that work more efficiently than other appliances. Add power bars to help reduce phantom power consumption and improve your carbon footprint even more.
Promote Flexible Work
While promoting work-from-home opportunities may be the norm during the pandemic, it’s worth mentioning the long-term benefits of switching to this model.
Allowing employees to follow a flexible work structure will help reduce their commute-related emissions and consumption at the office. When employees work from home, they’re using energy that’s already in use— an office is an additional setup on top of that energy.
Having fewer people in the office at a given time also helps reduce the overall demand for energy throughout the day.
Use a Sustainable Energy Source
In deregulated states, companies have the option of choosing from a variety of energy providers. By choosing a renewable energy source, business owners can make a lasting positive impact on the environment. The more these sources are in demand, the more accessible they will become.
If possible, make the switch to solar, wind, or hydropower. Many green energy providers offer rebates for staying within a certain consumption threshold. Additionally, many government organizations offer incentive programs for making the switch.
Packaging is a huge offender for waste within a business. Consider how you package your goods and if your methods are causing harm. Eliminate single-use plastics whenever possible and make your box sizes fit the offering— learn from Amazon’s mistakes.
With these six changes, you can make your business more sustainable, both financially and environmentally. Tackle one change at a time and adjust your approach as needed for long-term success.