Can Businesses Listen To Greta Thunberg At Last?
Unless you’ve been living under a rock, it’s fair to say that you’ve probably heard of Greta Thunberg, the young Swedish activist who initiated a school strike for climate. Grate reached New York yesterday, after a zero-emission crossing on a boat across the Atlantic. The trip took her over two weeks. However, she was successful in proving that it is possible to travel without affecting the environment.
Most of us consider her plea for a green planet with doubts. Our hands are tied, we say, it’s up to governments to sort it out. However, everybody could do their part to reduce their carbon footprint. At home, switching to a vegan diet can dramatically improve your household carbon footprint, for instance. As for offices, they have more options at hand to improve the climate situation.
Reducing commuting is the first step
Millennials have been demanding remote working options for years. However, less than half of the UK workforce has access to flexible working. Many of them, unfortunately, are only allowed to work remotely for no more than a couple of days during the week. In other words, the majority of employees continue to commute to work every day, leading to a high carbon footprint. As a business, providing secure remote access should be a priority, both for the environment and your team’s work/life balance.
Introducing monitored driving for your car fleet
Admittedly, not every business activity can survive remotely. Transportation, couriers, and other shipping requirements rely on your vehicle fleet. There are, nonetheless, options to reduce your impact on the environment. For instance, more and more companies are considering scheduled delivery times per geographical areas. For example, all customers in a specific postcode radius receive their delivery on the same day every week. Additionally, training your drivers on how to use a digital tachograph can be a source of improvement. By monitoring their speed, drivers can gradually develop fuel-efficient habits.
When you have to drive, share the car
When your staff needs to drive to the office, you could introduce a car-sharing scheme for the business. From your employees’ perspective, it’s an easy way to save cost and mileage throughout the year. But, by actively reducing the number of vehicles on the road, you can also decrease CO2 significantly. Alternatively, public transport remains a viable option in large cities, such as London or Birmingham. It’s fair to say that British transport services still have a long way to go to replace individual vehicles.
Develop a no-waste policy
Last but not least comes the matter of waste. Offices are generating tonnes of unnecessary waste every year. From excessive paper consumption to plastic packaging, one thing is for sure: Your cleaning team has to empty the bins every week. Simple changes, however, can help to improve the climate situation. Reducing the use of printers, for instance, is a common approach, especially if you encourage the team to move towards a cloud-based solution. Additionally, eco-friendly alternatives to the typical kitchen snacks and drinks are another great idea. And finally, you need to introduce waste sorting policies to encourage recycling.
In conclusion, developing a green strategy is accessible to the smallest of businesses. While it’s a change of habit and it often requires companies to get out of their comfort zone, there is a lot to gain in acting together towards a green world. After all, climate change will soon be irreversible if we don’t act now.