With so many things to worry about when it comes to your business like the right cybersecurity strategy and location, why should you also worry about carbon emissions? According to the 2018 UN report, it’s estimated that the people of earth have just 12 years to prevent devastating climate change. With this in mind, it is clear that now is the time for everyone to get on board and take steps to mitigate this climate crisis – including businesses of all sizes. If no improvements are made, climate change is going to result in damaged economies, result in resource scarcity, and significantly increase how much it costs to continue doing business. While 12 years is just a short amount of time, the future doesn’t have to seem bleak if people begin taking steps right now.
The first step that must be taken to reduce carbon emissions is to know how much your business is producing. There are handy tools that can help you determine this amount.
Keep the Three R’s in Mind
Chances are you have heard the phrase “reduce, reuse, recycle,” more than a few times in your life. However, if your business is new to this green movement, the starting line is here. You should make sure the Three R’s apply to all the different facets of your business – from the packaging you use, to your operations, office supplies, supply chain, and more.
Make sure you reduce and reuse first, as these are the practices that will help to skim the excess. When you run out of reusable alternatives or if reusing doesn’t work for your business, you should try to start a recycling program in your office or business setting.
Invest in Renewable Sources of Energy
Wind and solar power rank as two of the fastest-growing jobs in the United States. Electric vehicle production is also beginning to grow, and utility companies are not beginning to incorporate renewables in their portfolios. Today, buying renewable energy for your office is considered a long-term investment.
You can opt to purchase solar panels, but if your business already uses an established power grid, it may present a serious challenge. In these situations, you can also decide to reduce your overall consumption by using higher-efficiency lighting and making sure you power off all your electronic devices when they aren’t being used. You should also be more proactive when it comes to clean energy and buy Renewable Energy Certificates – RECs – which demonstrates your business’s commitment to using clean energy.
You may also make it easier to convert your home office to the use of on-site renewables. While it depends on where you live, you may find that your local government also offers rebates and subsidies.
Reduce Total Food Waste
Food waste is something that can occur at every stage of the food system and it makes up approximately eight percent of all greenhouse gas emissions. As a result, food recovery isn’t just an environmental crisis, it’s actually a business one.
You don’t have to have a grocery store or restaurant to produce food waste or to reduce it. Rather than catering from local restaurants to your office, you can find food suppliers that source from local farmers, along with the community. By doing this, you can indirectly reduce food waste and minimize the movement of food from one location to another.
You should also consider creating an office compost program that will recycle food waste into a fertilizer. If you aren’t able to create this type of in-office program, you can likely find various service options in your area.
Choose Sustainable Web Hosting Services
Believe it or not, website hosting services are the invisible consumers of fossil fuels. Unless you are planning to host your website alone, it will likely live on a data server that is located in a warehouse that is powered by fossil fuels. Modern data servers will consume large amounts of energy because they have to be powered and cooled at all times. By choosing sustainable hosting services, you will have a company that will purchase Renewable Energy Certificates, which highlight their renewable energy use.
Education is Key
Effective change all starts with knowledge. Over 50 percent of all Americans will rarely, if ever, discuss climate change because they don’t know enough, or because they are overwhelmed or believe it is scary. This can all be remedied with proper education and a civil conversation about the topic.
When it comes to reducing your business’s carbon emissions, there are more than a few factors you need to keep in mind. However, with time and effort, you can easily reduce the emissions created by your business and reduce your overall impact on the environment.