Making new year’s resolutions appeals to my Type A brain, and one of ideas for 2021 is to embrace more environmentally friendly habits.
Bringing reusable shopping bags with me to the store, cutting down on plastic waste, and buying second-hand clothes have become second nature for me.
Of course, being a vegan is the most “green” thing about me!
But my business could use some editing to catch up with the rest of my eco goals. Sometimes I’m embarrassed by how much paper I go through and all the gas those next day deliveries are wasting.
The good thing is we can scale our efforts based on where we’re at right now. So start with the recycled paper and move up to the solar panels.
Want to run a more sustainable business?
Here are some smart ways to make your business more environmentally friendly.
Use Energy Efficient Lights and Appliances
This is a simple way to really “lighten up” your energy usage! OK, I’ll stop it with the bad puns.
LEDs are eco-friendly and highly-efficient, and although they cost more than incandescent and CFL lighting, they last longer and consume less energy, hence bringing down costs in the long run. Switching to this kind of lighting helps save the environment and save money for your business.
Switch your old technology appliances and electronics with the new energy efficient ones. Unlike their predecessors that offset a high amount of carbon, they consume less energy.
This is especially helpful for those of you who rent office space or work out of your home. You can purchase dishwashers, coffeemakers, and fridges at low costs, and in no time, you’ll notice your utility bill shrink.
Use Solar Energy to Power Your Business
This tip is mostly for big businesses with office buildings, but as more and more of us work remotely, we can think about how we use energy in our home offices.
Solar energy significantly reduces carbon footprints globally, and it’s becoming a popular energy power source because the sun never diminishes.
When your business goes solar, it receives rewards and state-based incentive programs. Similarly, this project will have your business granted federal tax credit of up to thirty percent of the price tag. Wow!
In some states, there are net metering program mandates for businesses that use solar because they help in saving energy costs. You can also receive an extra revenue stream by selling excess energy to other businesses.
Reuse and Recycle Various Items
You can make your business more eco-friendly by using PCWs (post-consumer waste) products such as packaging, napkins, printing paper, and toilet paper that are made from recycled materials. They pose less harm to the environment and use less energy and water during production.
Alternatively, you can reduce the use of paper by printing less and utilizing electronic means like computers paired with the internet through emailing and cloud computing.
Honestly, I’m super guilty about wasting paper, printing too much, and going though paper products without a care in the world. I blame my years as a book editor for my wasteful tendencies.
Also, when you have surplus electronic equipment, you can benefit the environment by giving them to people in need or sell them as second-hand products.
Even outside of the office, there are plenty of ways to make use of recycled materials or byproducts of certain processes. Some construction companies might offer aggregate material sales as an affordable and eco-friendly way for businesses to carry out all kinds of projects.
In some industries, it’s common for some byproducts to be used for specific uses. In the brewing industry, for example, byproducts such as spent grains and hops are often used in animal feed. There are all kinds of options to make your business greener through recycling and reusing.
Prevent Oil Spillage and Reduce Water Usage
Consider this a newsflash for big corporations!
If you deal with oil production or marine transportation, you can prevent oil spillage into water bodies by using oil stop valves; it’s a device that prevents bulk oil spillage while allowing water from storms to drain. With this, you protect aquatic life and freshwater bodies that provide water for consumption.
Similarly, you can reduce water usage by fixing taps, leaking pipes, and installing faucet aerators and low-flow toilets in washrooms. For cleaning jobs, use washers that have high-efficiency pressure. By doing so, you will make water more sustainable and reduce water bills.
Ready to Go Green?
I challenge you to switch to environmentally friendly ways to run an even better business.
We can make the environment more sustainable, save on business expenses, and make our businesses more profitable.
It’s a new year’s win for us and the Earth!
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