Small Changes That Yield Big Improvements in Environmental Impact
It seems like every day we hear about a new environmental disaster or villain. Whether it’s a new statistic about CO2 emissions in industrial China or the 15 minutes of infamy recently garnered by plastic straws, environmental concerns have been at the forefront of our collective conscience like never before.
As a result, it’s crucially important businesses are aware of the environmental impact they have.
To put it bluntly, most businesses don’t operate in sustainable ways and are one of the leading causes of environmental degradation, but it doesn’t have to be this way.
By adopting better practices and considering how their businesses may become more energy efficient, business owners can change their corporate culture to make an eco-friendly difference — and save some money in the process.
If you’ve been considering making a change, here are 5 Easy Ways to a Greener Corporate Culture.
- 1% for the Planet
Founded in 2002, 1% for the Planet is an environmental organization that takes a donation of 1% of a business’s annual gross and distributes it to a portfolio of nonprofits working towards the goal of environmental protection.
So far, the nonprofit has distributed over $175 million to environmental causes via rigorously vetted nonprofit partners.
1% for the Planet is a safe, credible way to ensure your donation has an impact on a diverse range of environmental concerns.
- PCW Paper
One of the biggest problems many businesses face actually comes from the production practices of their vendors, predominantly when it comes to paper products. If there’s one phrase that’s particularly important when looking for a vendor with truly green products, it’s “Post-Consumer Waste”.
Items made with post-consumer waste (PCW) are created entirely from the paper that ends up in recycling bins. The production of PCW products uses nearly 50% less of the energy needed to produce non-recycled products while creating about half the waste that goes into traditional paper making.
Although only products marked “100% PCW” are completely made of PCW, all PCW products have labels indicating how much of the product is PCW. Obviously, the higher the percentage, the better the product is for the environment.
- Around the Office
There are many ways to make small changes around the office that add up to a big impact.
Passing out reusable water bottles is a great choice that eliminates the need for single use paper cups or worse — single use plastic bottles.
Providing your cleaning staff or stocking your cleaning cabinet with ecologically friendly cleaners is also a great step to reduce potential harm to our waterways and marine life.
Another great energy (and money) saving change you can make is opting for LED or CFL lights in your building. Choosing these eco-friendly options can make a cumulative difference in your energy bill, particularly in a larger office. They’re also affordable to install, particularly when you consider their potentially decades long lifespan, meaning minimal cost of replacement.
- Green Web Hosting
Green Web Hosting is simply an eco-friendly alternative to standard web hosting.
They use alternative energy sources in order to offset the massive amounts of energy web hosts require. Many green web hosts also enact strict eco-friendly policies within their work place and take part in various initiatives (like hosting fundraisers or planting trees) in order to further offset their energy use.
Even better, switching to one of these green web hosts may cost you nothing, and in some instances, can save you money compared to their fossil fuel counterparts.
- Run an Energy Audit
An energy audit is a great way to get a base line on your company’s energy usage and many states will conduct one for free.
Your energy company will send out an auditor who will look for problems like faulty window seals. Many audits include extensive looks at your past energy bills as well as tests like thermographic scans.
Following your energy usage assessment, your auditor will give you a report with a list of suggested changes to boost your office energy efficiency. In addition to paying for the audit itself, some states may pay for your repairs (or a portion of them).
Future-Environment Thinking, and the Forward-Thinking Business
In an economy increasingly based on forward thinking, doesn’t it make sense to look towards the future of our environment? By adopting some of the simple strategies we’ve outlined above, your business can save money and help save the environment.
Looking for greener printing options? Contact us to see how Strata’s own green initiative can work for you.
About Jeff Sammak
As president and founder of Strata Company, Jeff Sammak has been a leader in the advanced integration of marketing, data and emerging technologies for over 20 years. He has a deep understanding of complex business challenges and keen ability to translate them to technology-driven solutions that align to a client’s key strategic business objectives. He attended Monmouth College for Business, Jeff enjoys scuba diving, skiing and spending time with his family.