With climate change one of the biggest issues the world faces today, businesses, governments and individuals are increasingly looking at the impacts of their decisions on the social and environmental level.
Have you ever wondered what environmental sustainability in business means to your business? One of the greatest lessons we've gained from being an award-winning sustainable brand is that you don't have to be a huge corporation or multinational to introduce measures that matter.
Even if you're a small to medium sized enterprise, here are 5 initiatives you can immediately implement to make your business greener and cleaner.
1) Tap into alternative sources of energy
Renewable energy comes from sources such as the wind or sun. According to energy statistics released by the UK Government in 2018, renewable sources reached new highs, providing 29.3% of the electricity generated in the UK in 2017, compared to 24.5% in 2016. As a business, be inspired to explore new ways to invest in alternative energies. Try switching to a credible green energy provider, for example. At Sunglass Fix, we produce more power than we use, thanks to 25KW of solar roof panels!
2) Recycle, Reduce & Reuse
If you can't reuse something, then the next best option is to recycle it. Everything from paper and cardboard, technology parts, glass and food scraps can be recycled. Another great tip is simply to use less. In other words, assess how you can reduce using resources where possible. So what is environmental sustainability in business when it comes to the three Rs? In our case, we do things like reuse the bubble wrap packaging that our customers send their sunglasses in, and use recycled materials for warehouse builds. We also have a water recycling and filtration initiative.
3) Assess your supply chain
An environmental sustainability business mindset can also involve auditing your suppliers. How committed are they to being green? Do they deliver on their environmental promises? 'Green supply chain management' is used to encourage your suppliers to reduce their impacts from the design stage through to manufacturing and delivery of a final product or material. This can take the form of clearly stating your sustainability values to suppliers or choosing to work with businesses that share the same green values.
4) Embrace the digital revolution
It's an exciting time to be in business. Technology has transformed the way we connect, communicate and interact with one another. Data storage in the cloud, online marketing, working from remote locations and holding meetings via video calls are just some of the solutions you can easily introduce to become a more sustainable business. Why? Because these alternatives allow your office to go paperless, and through less business travel, reduce its carbon emissions.
5) Formalise your commitment
OK, say you've ticked off a number of boxes and are feeling great about your environmental sustainability business journey. What next? Start thinking about taking things to the next level by measuring your environmental practices against leading benchmarks. If you want to set the bar high, the ISO 14001 Environment Audit is one of the world's recognised standards. It provides a clear framework for businesses to help improve their environmental performance.
Sunglass Fix is a sustainable business founded on a vision to reduce the volume of sunglasses going into landfill. We offer quality replacement sunglass lenses online, making it easy and affordable to keep your favourite pair for longer.