The battle against pollution is one that takes a lot of effort to win, especially now that we’re in a rapidly-digitizing and technologically-improving society. Decades ago, scholars and experts said our path towards progress is making a terrible compromise with the safety of our environment. However, if there’s anything the world is showing right now, it’s that the world’s governments – and a lot of big industry figures – have decided to make a more proactive approach in combining their business philosophies with the aim to reduce carbon emissions. Of course, if you’re a big company, much more an industry figure, you’re likely going to be able to plan for these matters more efficiently given your resources. If you’re a small-to-medium enterprise, however, making these decisions can be too much of an investment. Or is it?
An initiative towards reducing your company’s carbon emissions can be a huge step towards a safer and cleaner environment. In the United States alone, industry-based greenhouse gases comprise of 22-percent of the country’s emissions in 2016 alone. This is preceding transportation and electricity, both at 28-percent. In 2015 in Europe, 26-percent of its total emissions have come from air conditioning, steam, gas, and electricity supply; meanwhile, 19-percent have come from manufacturing.
If your business is looking towards a better means of operating while reducing your carbon emissions, you may want to look at these handy methods companies, business, and people are doing to reduce their carbon footprint.
- Rethink investments: When you try to think about reducing your carbon emissions, you’re likely aware that sometimes certain decisions you have to make to reach this endeavor will come with a bit of a price predicament. After all, not all solutions for an eco-friendly workplace are necessarily cheap. However, whenever the “it costs to invest” statement comes to you, perhaps start to develop a mindset of spending a bit more now in order to save money more in the long-term. Try to make a cost assessment on your potential eco-friendly investments and try to plot potential costs in the future, and try to compare this to your current plans.
- Change the office supplies game: Did you know that 4-million (!) disposal pens are thrown away every single day in the United States, and that’s just about pens. Changing the way your office supplies work can be a huge step towards reducing waste in your office. For instance, using reusable pens, or as in pens with ink cartridges that can be refilled, can save money and reduce plastic waste. Try to keep track of how much everyone is wasting and what they’re doing to their trash, and you might even start encouraging people to be more mindful of their own environmental footprint. A waste report might help establish your company’s goals for a greener, more eco-friendly environment.
- Adopt green procurement: Another handy way of making your business eco-friendly is to start establishing the practice of connecting with suppliers that also try to use sustainable and eco-friendly practices. Try to look for suppliers that don’t use harmful and toxic substances, supplies made from renewable materials, or even supplies themselves that could be reused. Try to be more inquisitive and ask suppliers where and how their products are made, and don’t hesitate to refuse making transactions with those that don’t use green methods to make their products. Of course, not all suppliers are as eco-friendly as we want, so it might be helpful to ask around for suppliers that actually do eco-friendly ways of creating products but at the same time create products that are top-notch as well.
- Green energy: A lot of companies are starting to rely on more green energy sources since 2015 thanks to renewable energy varieties such as solar, wind, and hydroelectric power. Sometimes going for voluntary power purchase agreements can also reduce your office’s greenhouse emissions by being offered less power to use for a lower price. This also challenges your company to find more eco-friendly solutions to answer this challenge.
- Go digital: Another popular option to reduce your carbon footprint and have a better environmental impact is to go digital – as in try to have a more established digital presence both as a brand and inside the company. Try to go paperless in terms of transactions and documents, and try to be more proactive in making sure the usage of paper in your office is practical and not wasteful. This not only makes your company open to more advancements in technology, but can also help you save more money by avoiding buying a lot of supplies.
- Remote working can reduce costs: Aside from going digital, try to do this literally as well. If there’s an option for employees to bring their work home, perhaps remote working can actually make you be just as productive but with less costs. This is because the less people there are in your office, the less pollution and waste your office makes, and the more likely there will be less pollution on the road because of commuting as well.
- Reuse, recycle furniture: If you’re looking to buy new supplies for your office, perhaps try to reuse or recycle furniture. This might seem a bit icky at first, but choosing the right furniture with the right aesthetics might save you more and make your office look appealing – even if it’s second-hand. This is especially if you’re really just looking into updating your office aesthetics and not essentially replace your furniture.
Conclusion: Add A Dash Of Creativity To It
Perhaps the best way to start your initiative towards reducing carbon emissions is to study just how others reduce their carbon footprint and adopt small moves to your business and your daily life. It doesn’t necessarily mean that just because you want to reduce your carbon emissions, that you have to put everything on the line. Add a dash of creativity to it, and try to think of ways to make your initiative something you can leverage your business or daily life on. Based on the above, you may be able to think of programs, products, or services that can not only be eco-friendly, but even introduce a better means of generating appeal.
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