19 Oct 5 Simple Tips For Environmental Best Practice
In the wake of climate change, protecting the environment is a more pressing concern than ever. Governments, global organisations, and individuals are all taking action — but how can businesses help?
As industry can be considered a contributor to climate change or environmental pollution (especially if best practices are not followed) it is vital that more companies take action and address their impact on the environment. But what are the best ways to get started?
There are many events and initiatives that help us make a positive impact on the environment, such as the annual Big Green Week, Earth Day, global summits, and more. But we can all make a difference in the workplace too.
Below, we explore five simple tips that are highly relevant to any businesspeople seeking to enact the best practices in environmental awareness.
1. Know The Guidelines
Environmental guidelines can vary greatly depending on the size of your business, your location, your industry, and several other factors. They can also change every year, or on a rolling basis, so must be regularly checked to ensure that you are still in compliance.
The first step towards environmental best practice is to know what the specific guidelines are for your industry. You can conduct your own research or hire an expert to advise – such as those from an environmental protection agency or charity, for example.
Knowing what the guidelines are is essential — even if you can’t meet them all right away. The guidelines will allow you to see where your strengths and weaknesses lie, and identify how you can improve.
2. Take Positive Steps
Once you know the particular guidelines and requirements for your industry, you can start taking positive steps towards achieving them.
It is important to note which steps are essentials or legal requirements, and which are just recommendations. This will help you to prioritise and ensure that you are always up to code, while also taking consistent, smaller steps towards improving your environmental practices.
Do not be discouraged if you cannot implement or achieve every recommendation right away. Instead, remember that you have already made progress simply by being aware of what the best practices are. Then, you can create a strategy for steadily improving your processes over time, while immediately taking any positive steps you can.
3. Schedule Regular Reviews
Being aware of environmental guidelines and regulations is essential, and will allow you to develop a company-wide culture of green procedures. But it is important to acknowledge that many will need continuous monitoring if you are to stay compliant.
To remain up to date, you can schedule regular reviews of all aspects of your business — including your impact on the environment.
Many companies review annually, but you may prefer more regular reviews — like quarterly, for example — to help ensure that you are always on track. This is especially important if you are newly introducing environmental best practices into your business, or if you think they are likely to change in the near future.
By scheduling regular reviews and enlisting the help of experts where possible, your business will get closer and closer towards achieving optimal environmental standards.
4. Be Transparent
When aiming for better environmental practice, it can be helpful to be open and communicative about your intentions. This includes within the company and amongst personnel, but on an external level too.
Be clear about your goals and intentions, ask for guidance and assistance from knowledgeable sources, and seek feedback and suggestions from your customers or collaborators, for example.
The more transparent you are about what you are trying to achieve, the more others can help you to meet those goals and offer suggestions on where to improve. Then, when you accomplish your targets or draw closer to doing so, you can celebrate together!
5. Repurpose Your Resources
‘Reduce, reuse, recycle’ may be a familiar slogan, but its application is as useful as ever — especially in business.
Environmental best practice can start very simply, such as by reducing unnecessary waste, reusing items or equipment, and recycling whenever possible.
Many companies have pledged to go paperless, for example, or to only purchase second-hand electrical equipment. Others have ensured their offices are more energy-efficient, or aimed to make their processes carbon neutral.
The main aim of environmental best practice is to preserve natural resources, and to have a beneficial (or at least neutral) effect on the environment wherever possible.
However you choose to get involved, keep this core message in mind and you and your business will never stray far from the environmental best practices!