Green business is good business
Background, what and why
Businesses of all sizes play pivotal roles at all levels of our communities and economy. Their vital and far-reaching impacts can be felt across all areas of our lives, driving growth, providing innovation and improving development. The same positive contributions by businesses are also sorely needed in the fight against climate change – with our businesses becoming more sustainable by reducing waste, moving towards renewable energy use, and where possible utilising greener supply chains.
A sustainable business is not only good for the planet, but it’s good for the economy too. Coupled with the well-documented consumer shift in demand towards ethically sourced products and services, research is showing that it pays to go green!
Additional benefits for business include:
- A greater awareness of your business’ place and role within the community
- Access to specialised funding and financing
- Scope to reduce overheads and long-term costs through responsible practice management
- Keeping your business up-to-date with current market trends and demands
- Potential for your business to expand and grow by accessing new market opportunities realised through practice review
Where are you now? What is your carbon footprint and why should you reduce it?
Your carbon footprint is the estimated amount of carbon dioxide released as a consequence of your day-to-day activities or functions. Every person (and indeed business) has one, so getting your footprint under control is a critical first step to becoming more sustainable and achieving carbon-neutrality.
Energy and water usage – where are you spending money
Getting a handle on your energy and water usage is a key element to becoming a sustainable business. From implementing ‘smart-meters’ that track your energy outgoings, to putting reduction filters on your taps and sinks, there are many small and cost effective measures your business can take to achieve easy wins in this area. Benefits also include a reduction in your spending on energy and water facilities; with the potential to access whether investments such as premises insulation could yield long term savings for your business.
Proper waste management is one of the pillars of sustainability. Many businesses achieve this by implementing what is known as a ‘Waste Management Plan’. There are many benefits to taking this route, all centred around ensuring your business remains cost-effective and abides by government regulations. Opportunities in the proposed “circular economy” format could mean you’d be compensated for your waste management; in effect ‘selling’ your rubbish!
- Technology (including advice on viability assessment / ROI measurement and business rates implications)
- LED lighting
- Heat pumps
- Wind power
- EV charging points
- Sustainable transport planning – how to facilitate staff moving to more sustainable transport modes
There are a few options on how to reduce your carbon footprint whilst keeping operations up and running. Whether it’s encouraging car-pooling, promoting cycling to work, or covering staff’s train fares, all of these options can be implemented with a bit of organisation.
- Supply chain management
The COVID pandemic highlighted the need for extra attention to detail when organising your supply chains. This is a common theme as, increasingly, there is a demand from consumers to ethically source, produce, and package goods in a way that doesn’t damage or litter the environment. Compounded by the economic benefits of managing your supply chains with precision, choosing lower carbon-option suppliers
- Carbon offsetting
The goal of achieving carbon neutrality can be realised in a number of ways. A popular method is carbon ‘offsetting’, wherein a company will engage and commit to programmes designed to offset their carbon contribution by a similar amount. This can be anything from planting a number of trees to take carbon out of the atmosphere, to investing in green energy projects that may yield longer term environmental benefits.
- Find suppliers
You can find suppliers for each of your sustainability goals from within the Chamber’s membership directory
- Find support
Funding and finance – what sources are available