If the advanced societies in the world continue down our current path, it won’t be long until we’ve used up all of the planet’s fossil fuels. For example, we could be out of oil in 2051 and gas in 2061. Additionally, because of our mass consumption of these fuels, we’ve also caused a lot of damage to our environment.
Therefore, it’s no surprise that individuals and companies around the world are trying to learn how to be environmentally friendly. The green movements they’re partaking in include everything from recycling and reducing waste to using energy-efficient and clean energy products.
However, sometimes being an environmentally friendly company is easier said than done. It takes an investment of both time and money to make the change, but the payoff is more than worth it.
Keep reading to find out how your business can make a positive impact on the planet!
How to Be Environmentally Friendly as a Business
As we just suggested, it takes a large effort on behalf of management and employees to make a transition into going green. Keep in mind, that it probably won’t happen overnight. Many of the changes you make will be one step at a time.
However, once you start learning how to be environmentally friendly, the process becomes easier. The key is getting your staff on board. Having a company meeting to discuss your plans and why making an effort to go green is a great way to get the ball rolling.
We recommend using facts and figures about depleting resources and the effects our over-usage is having on the planet. Go about it however you like, but it’s always best if everyone is on board.
1. Use as Little Paper as Possible
We are currently enjoying a period of technological advancement this world has never seen. As such, everyone has smartphones, tablets, computers, laptops, and watches that count their steps and tells them when a text or call is coming in.
Therefore, why are we still using so much paper?
One of the best things you can do is cut your paper usage down to the bare minimum. You don’t need to print documents when everyone has work emails. This includes sending newsletters and mail to clients or potential clients.
2. Use LED Lights or Daylighting Systems
Most companies have already made the switch to energy-efficient lighting. If not, they should.
LED lights use up to 75% less energy than incandescent lights and last 25 times longer! Those are some pretty big numbers.
Alternatively, you could consider using daylighting systems. These architectural systems take advantage of the many benefits natural sunlight can offer.
Daylighting systems not only take away the need for any lights during the day, but it also helps boost people’s mood by allowing in sunlight. Our skin reacts to natural sunlight by synthesizing vitamin D. It’s a great way to combat Seasonal Affective Disorder.
3. Encourage Carpooling or Public Transportation
Another way you can help your company learn how to be environmentally friendly is by encouraging your staff to carpool or use public transportation.
You can offer incentives for people who choose to do so, allowing them to leave work early or come in slightly later. The more people who get on board, the better. Employees can take turns driving for a week at a time and then enjoy getting rides for weeks after.
4. Consider Implementing Green Energy
Another way you can choose how to be environmentally friendly is by installing sustainable energy resources.
This could include small wind turbines on the roof or solar panels. These ideas will take some investment upfront, but could potentially lead to using much less electricity. Additionally, you don’t have to do it all at once, you can build up your system over time.
5. Look for Energy Star Appliances
Energy Star appliances are certified energy efficient. These appliances are a great start in learning how to be environmentally friendly. Energy Star is a company run by the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Energy.
They make everything from TVs to washing machines. However, in the breakroom, you can replace fridges, microwaves, coffee makers, and more. You can also buy energy-efficient computers, TVs, printers, copiers, etc.
6. Recycle Waste
One of the first steps people make when learning how to be environmentally friendly is starting to recycle waste.
You can easily do this at your company by placing separate bins for each type of recyclable. Make sure you label the bins clearly so it’s convenient for people. If it’s not easy, people will be less likely to make the effort to recycle.
The main bins you want are plastics, glass, paper, and aluminum.
7. Recycle Products
Next, you also want to look at recycling products. For example, instead of throwing out old chairs, desks, computers, etc., donate them or find a way to reuse them.
Americans throw away 230 million tons of waste each year. As much as possible, think about donating or recycling before dumping.
8. Limit Water Usage
Another way your employees can learn how to be environmentally friendly is by using less water. Most of our water consumption takes place at home taking long showers, watering our lawns, and so on.
However, at work, we use more water than we need while washing our hands, washing dishes, filling up water just to dump it out later, etc.
9. Use Environmentally Friendly Vendors
Finally, as a company, there’s no way to avoid consumerism. You need products not only to run the company but also to have employees. However, you don’t need to be wasteful.
Environmentally friendly vendors provide everything from paper to desks using recycled or reclaimed materials. While these products may be a little more expensive, it will teach you to use less and make a positive impact on the planet.
Start Taking Action Today
Learning how to be environmentally friendly is a big undertaking. Understand that it will take a large commitment for everyone involved. However, once you have started an initiative to go green, it’s quite rewarding.
Start taking steps today and be sure to check out the rest of our articles on small business right here on our site!