Thursday 5th Dec 2019
With the reduction of coal power, what can businesses do to reduce their carbon footprint?
Research was by the Centre for Research on Energy and Clean Air, the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis and the UK climate think tank Sandbag has shown that this year will boast the biggest drop in global coal use on record. This is something that can only be good for the environment, and with countries showing that they can make significant efforts to reduce their carbon footprint, we’ve wondered - what can the average British business do to reduce the emissions it creates?
This is perhaps one of the ways in which most businesses - both small and large - fail when it comes to managing their environmental impact. There are lots of small things that can be done, which we’ll look at in the next few points, but without setting real targets based on actual carbon footprint, it can be hard to truly make an impact. Spend some time understanding the genuine environmental impact of your business, and then set yourself CO2 goals based on that. Be realistic but ambitious.
Take a business-wide approach
Being more environmentally friendly isn’t something for just part of the business to be responsible for. Everyone has to get involved, from entry-level employees who follow policy and instruction, to c-suite executives that make the large decisions. Managers and business leaders need to not only set the environmental approach for the business; they need to lead by example too. It’s never a good idea to preach environmental standards when you don’t follow them yourself.
Cut out fossil fuels
This can seem like a hugely difficult task for some businesses, but in reality it’s much easier than you might think. The market has adapted to give businesses the opportunity to reduce their reliance on fossil fuels. Most good energy providers will now have the opportunity for you to go onto a renewable energy tariff. While the costs might be slightly higher, the environmental impact of switching is considerable. If you’re taking advantage of such a plan, you can also switch to electric vehicles, charged by renewable electricity to further cut out emissions.
Make the small changes
Finally, there are lots of little things that individuals can do in their everyday work life to help reduce the amount of carbon emissions they’re responsible for. Encourage things like careful electricity and water use, which means not leaving machinery switched on when it shouldn’t be, and not boiling a full kettle of water when it isn’t needed. Communicate this, and set small changes as policy. It’ll soon add up.