Contrary to popular belief, for many businesses, cutting greenhouse gas emissions can also benefit the bottom line, since more efficient practices lower operating costs and improve worker productivity. Chris Martin, CTO at PowWowNow, speaks exclusively to BQ about the five ways businesses can do their bit in the fight to save our planet.
Employees are increasingly aware of the current global climate change crisis, and the impact of their individual carbon footprint on the environment. With the advent of new technologies, there are many ways that businesses can take advantage of these developments to help tackle climate change.
Green your commute
For many, the biggest work-related environmental impact occurs during the commute. This has a massive impact on the climate, with every gallon of fuel burned creating around 20 pounds of carbon dioxide.
At present, there are a wealth of increasingly popular new travel options enabled through technology that can be considered as a commuting alternative. Electric cars are growing more popular, while electric and electric-assist vehicles, from e-scooters to e-bikes, are available in many cities and accessible via an app, and dockless bike-sharing schemes are becoming widespread.
Utilising car-pooling apps means workers can coordinate their commutes with others and reduce their own carbon footprint, while simply parking further away from the workplace and walking can help lower emissions. Encouraging staff to work from shared workspaces also means employees can work from more convenient locations requiring shorter commutes.
Implement flexible working
By putting in place flexible working policies across the team or organisation, businesses can take advantage of online tools to ensure their workforce don’t feel obliged to travel to the office to carry out tasks every day. Companies should provide access to devices that are programmed with communication and collaboration tools that help maintain a team environment while working from any location and at any time.
Web-based file sharing solutions allow workers to access and share documents when working remotely. In addition, screen-sharing and video using web conferencing platforms negate the need for face-to-face meetings; all participants can view and share materials and gain better insight into the discussion occurring.
Make renewable energy switches in your tech
When purchasing office equipment, businesses should look for appliances with an Energy star label, which means that the equipment has achieved energy efficiency standards set by the EU, which means they use 30-65 per cent less electricity than their counterparts. Greener alternatives are also available for many pieces of tech, from energy-efficient light bulbs to solar-powered smart speakers.
Make the switch to renewable energy providers
UK businesses consume 56% of the UK’s energy, so if more businesses switch to renewable energy providers, this could contribute significantly to cutting the UK’s carbon emissions. As well as being a quick way to cut a business’ carbon footprint, greener energy is also increasingly cost-effective. Companies without long-term leases on their premises can easily switch to a green energy supplier, which provide power from clean sources.
Installing solar panels can also be a way of minimising your business’ environmental impact. Using this technology to generate green electricity at your site means the business requires less energy from the grid during daytime hours, helping the environment and contributing towards thousands of pounds of savings per year.
Going green has a variety of business benefits, from creating a healthy work environment, to reducing unnecessary waste and recognising the role that businesses play in paving the way for social transformation.
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