4 Ways Companies Can Reduce Their Carbon Footprint

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Traditionally, reducing your company’s carbon footprint might have involved having recycling bins near the copy machine and remembering to turn the lights off before leaving for the night.

While these are certainly solid approaches, there are several other ways for businesses and companies of any and all sizes to increase their sustainability and still maintain efficient operations.

To help your company become more eco-friendly, consider the following tips:

1. Use Renewable Materials and Supplies

Using renewable materials and supplies as much as possible is just one prime example to help save the planet.

This could include switching to recycled copy paper and envelopes, using eco-friendly packaging when shipping items, and sourcing renewable materials from a freight marketplace like Loadsmart. One side tip: Since people are often interested in working with companies that are devoted to being sustainable, you can note the various ways you are doing this on your website, which, in turn, may help boost sales.

2. Cut Back on Business Travel

Another way to reduce your company’s carbon footprint is to cut back on the amount of business travel you and your employees do. Granted, face-to-face meetings are often necessary, but as much as you can, consider meeting with new and existing clients via Zoom or FaceTime.

Other examples include allowing your employees to work from home at least part time, swapping out gas-powered company cars for hybrid models, and encouraging your team to carpool or take public transportation to work. To make this more appealing, consider purchasing a city bus pass or light rail ticket for interested employees or paying for a bicycle and helmet.

3. Get “Smart” with Technology

Yes, remembering to turn off the lights at night is a good way to save energy. But you can also proverbially up the eco-friendly ante by switching out your current light switches to “smart” versions that are programmed to turn off at a certain time of day, on weekends, and during the middle of the day when the sun is bright.

Other ideas include purchasing “smart” thermostats to keep the office warm or cold when employees are present — and automatically shutting off on the weekends — and replacing traditional light bulbs with LEDs. You can also install switches with a dimming function. as well as motion sensors to automatically turn lights off when no one is in a room.

4. Reduce Water Usage

Water conservation is another important way to increase your company’s sustainability. You can do this in several ways that will have no impact on your productivity. Reducing water is an excellent way to save money lowering utility costs, as well.

For instance, if you have landscaping surrounding the business, consider hiring a landscaping crew to remove thirsty grass and plants in favor of a xeriscaping approach, which involves using plants that require little water to survive. In addition, think about switching out machinery that uses water to eco-friendly models.

Case in point: If you use washers or dishwashers, consider investing in ENERGY STAR models that use small amounts of water.

Increased Sustainability and Production Can Go Hand in Hand

As you can see, there are several ways to reduce your company’s carbon footprint while still maintaining a high level of efficiency and productivity. Switching to renewable supplies won’t have a negative impact on your team’s ability to complete their projects, and you might just find that employees who work from home are even more efficient.

Adding in smart technology and reducing water usage are also great ways to make your business more eco-friendly.

Jenn Leach, MBA

Jenn Leach is a Houston-based MBA with over a decade of experience in the banking industry. She writes at Millennial Nextdoor where she writes finance, money, business, and lifestyle content to help millennials create additional income streams online. Join her on Substack at https://jennleach.substack.com.

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