45 years ago on April 22nd, the modern environmental movement was conceived. Gaylord Nelson, the founder of Earth Day, wanted to ignite a passion for conservation in people after the 1969 oil spill in California, which killed thousands of sea-going animals and plants, permanently damaging the area’s aquatic ecosystem. Since then, the Earth Day and green living movements have continued to grow. But in order to maintain that passion for caring for the environment today, it’s important for business owners – not just individual citizens – to take part in efforts to become a little greener. Fortunately, by following these 4 simple tips, you can begin to make your own business more environmentally responsible and help make a positive impact on the world.
1) Start small.
Simple things such as encouraging employees not to run the water while washing their hands or installing timed lights in your business’ building can make a huge environmental difference. As another example, business can also replace paper towels in bathrooms with blow dryers, which will free up storage space that once held large quantities of paper towels while reducing the amount of waste produced in your workspace. Small things like this add up to huge savings not only for your business, but for the environment.
2) Plant trees to offset your business’ carbon footprint.
Trying to boost your business’ green practices and image? Participate in a local tree planting event. In addition to making a positive impression in your area, you’ll possibly make a decent impact on your carbon footprint, as each tree that’s planted can absorb as much as 48 lbs. of carbon dioxide in a year. We recommend partnering up with organizations such as Carbon Fund to offset your carbon emissions. They even provide a calculator to estimate the amount of carbon your business emits into the atmosphere here.
3) Offer alternatives.
In addition to taking steps to go green internally, business’ that sell products or services have additional opportunities to make a positive impact on the environment. One thing they can do is offer eco-friendly options, such as bio-diesel, non-toxic paints, and products made with organic materials. Doing so can encourage consumers to choose the environmentally responsible options, and will allow your business to make an even stronger positive impact on the environment.
4) Follow the 3 R’s.
Business’ that want to get a little greener should definitely reduce, reuse and recycle at every opportunity. Reusing old materials or scraps in a responsible and safe fashion reduces the amount of things that need to be thrown away at the end of the day. Responsibly disposing of your waste can also significantly diminish your environmental impact; to ensure that you do responsibly dispose of your worksite’s tools, always check national and local safety laws and guidelines to see what the recommended disposal process is. Special services exist to help dispose of more harmful materials; some services, such as Battery Recycling, will even pick up the materials from your site and recycle the parts for future use.
Using these four pieces of advice will go a long way in greenifying your business. Business owners who want to make as positive an impact on the environment as possible should also educate their employees on the benefits of making responsible environment-related decisions. With the right guidance, your employees’ decisions can positively impact not only the environment, but your organization. With 71% of American workers wanting to work for a leader who is environmentally responsible, now is the time to begin working with your employees and making greener business decisions. By doing so, you will see a difference in all aspects of business.