World Environment Day is the ideal opportunity for business owners to showcase their company’s support for better sustainability practices, which will likely win customers and enhance your business’s reputation.
The annual World Environment Day (WED), held on Monday, June 5, raises awareness about current environmental issues and encourages people and businesses everywhere to implement better environmental practices. For businesses, marking WED allows you to demonstrate your commitment to the environment and sustainability. Assessing and promoting your organisation’s environmental impact results can raise your company’s profile with sustainability-minded consumers, investors and stakeholders.
We’ve put together ten ways you can showcase your business’s commitment to the environment and sustainability as we approach World Environment Day.
1. Conduct an environmental audit
Environmental audits are an effective way to assess your business’s environmental performance and identify areas for improvement.
You can identify and mitigate potential risks with current operations by conducting an environmental audit. Monitoring and recording potential hazards may help reduce the risk of your organisation being responsible for environmental problems later on and helps to safeguard your business’s eco-friendly reputation. ISO 14001 environmental management system provides guidelines for building an environmental management system (EMS), which can help you ensure your audit is thorough and effective.
Learn more about the global standard ISO 14001 environmental management system that can help your organisation demonstrate its environmental credentials.
2. Implement an Environmental Management System
Implementing an EMS such as ISO 14001 can help your business reduce environmental impact and save time and money.
An EMS involves a thorough environmental review and risk assessment by checking areas from waste reduction to energy consumption. It can also highlight which areas need improvement and help you develop strategies to lessen environmental risks. ISO 14001 provides the ideal framework for implementing a successful EMS; by carefully assessing a company’s environmental impact while simultaneously monitoring its progress.
3. Use renewable energy sources
Switching to renewable energy sources such as solar and wind power can save you money on energy bills.
Solar panels and wind turbines generate their own energy, reducing your business’s reliance on fossil fuels like coal, oil, and natural gas and reducing your environmental impact. Using renewable energy sources will also reduce energy costs, saving your business money. Showing your commitment to renewable energy resources will highlight your business as an environmentally-friendly organisation. ISO 50001 Energy Management System (EnMS) can help as it provides guidelines for implementing an EnMS to reduce energy consumption and promote renewable energy sources.
Discover all the benefits of becoming ISO 50001 certified to improve your business’s energy management.
4. Use sustainable materials
Businesses can make internal environmental changes by creating an environmentally friendly workplace setting.
For example, single-use plastics such as disposable cutlery and polystyrene foam coffee cups are non-recyclable and pile up in landfills. Opting for renewable, sustainable alternatives, such as bamboo utensils or recyclable plastics, can reduce the amount of commercial waste destined for landfill. Look for options that are compostable and don’t pollute the environment. Other ways you can inspire workplace sustainability are:
Encourage employees to reuse plastic bags.
Use recycled paper for printing and copying.
Switch to biodegradable pens.
Ensure all desk accessories are made from recycled materials, such as file folders, staplers, and binders.
Sustainable materials can play a role throughout the supply chain and cover all aspects, including manufacture, distribution, warehousing and logistics. For example, look for renewable or recycled raw materials during manufacturing, using sustainable packaging for transport and shipping.
5. Reduce your carbon footprint
To demonstrate energy-efficient practices, reducing your company’s carbon footprint is necessary.
One way to do this is to switch to renewable energy sources like wind or solar. Improving your company’s waste reduction measures, such as recycling, composting, and packaging, can also help reduce the carbon footprint. ISO 50001 EnMS sets clear guidelines to help organisations meet the appropriate targets to reduce carbon emissions and support the global effort to migrate to net zero.
You can install small, renewable energy generators such as solar panels or switch to a greener energy company and use a green energy tariff.
6. Promote sustainable transportation
Encouraging employees to use public transportation or setting up a sustainable transport procedure, such as company carpools, can reduce travel-related emissions.
Alternatively, raise awareness of the benefits of using sustainable transport to help employees understand its importance. This can motivate employees to use other sustainable transportation methods like cycling or walking to work. A great way to incentivise sustainable transport is to offer designated secure bike storage or incentives such as public transport loans or cycling equipment discounts for staff.
7. Minimise waste
A waste reduction programme can reduce your environmental impact, improving your sustainability credentials.
This can also save your business money through disposal costs. There are various ways to reduce waste, such as using less packaging, repurposing products, and ensuring effective recycling methods are established throughout the company. ISO 14001 provides clear guidelines for implementing a successful waste reduction programme that can also demonstrate your commitment to sustainability with investors and stakeholders.
8. Support sustainable initiatives
Supporting sustainable initiatives can help your business actively support local environmental projects while showcasing your business’s commitment to the environment.
Working with local or national causes that encourage greener practices, such as tree planting, cleanups, and environmental education programs, is a great way to engage with the local community while showing environmental support. Participating in sustainable initiatives is highly likely to enhance your brand’s reputation.
9. Educate employees
Educating employees on environmental sustainability helps to highlight how their actions at work and in their personal lives can impact the environment. For example, unnecessary printing or failing to use the recycle bins all contribute to environmental impact. When employees know the significance of their contribution, they’re more likely to make positive changes, which can reduce the business’s environmental impact. Employers can provide training on sustainable practices and promote environmentally-friendly initiatives by displaying posters and placing recycling bins throughout the workplace.
10. Promote your achievements
Once your business is on track to meet its sustainability goals, or if you feel you have taken great strides towards greener practices, showcase your success. Stakeholders, investors and consumers are mindful of environmentally responsible businesses, so share your accomplishments and commitment to the environment. Take advantage of World Environment Day and showcase your success by:
Implementing a green initiative programme: A green initiative program can help to reduce your environmental impact while enhancing your business’s corporate image and reputation, which can help you to retain and attract customers.
Publishing a sustainability report: Listing your achievements shows your commitment to sustainability practice. The transparency level will help you to build trust with stakeholders and customers.