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As the world’s energy crisis develops, creating more and more anxieties around the future of our gas and electricity supply, a more conscious effort is being put into creating a sustainable future. Over the past few years we have seen more and more energy suppliers providing a 100% renewable energy tariff , which is a huge step towards decreasing our household carbon footprint. It doesn’t just stop there though; it is our responsibility as businesses to also reduce our carbon footprint through our work. The average small business alone uses on average three times more than the average house, so just imagine how much high-usage customers are using. Read through this guide to see the ways that you could go green and why it will positively affect your business.
Save yourself money
Reducing the amount of energy that you are actually using is essentially a money saving trick first and foremost. By implementing a few quick and easy energy saving measures you are ‘killing two birds with one stone’ by reducing your carbon impact and spending less on your energy bills. This can be done in a variety of ways, including the following:
Decrease printing. This will not only reduce the amount electricity that you use, but will also lower your need for paper and ink.
Switch to LED lights. Many older office are still installed with incandescent light bulbs or other similar, inefficient light bulbs. Switching to LED bulbs will reduce your lighting costs by around 75%.
Control room temperature Many offices will over optimise their air conditioning and central heating to compensate for the weather outdoors. However, it’s often found that employs end up feeling uncomfortable on the other extreme. Taking a few degrees from your heating can save you serious money over a period of time.
Increase insulation in the office. Preventing temperature change through poor insulation could be a great investment for saving money in the future.
Install motion sensors in rooms that are erratically occupied to prevent the unnecessary lighting of rooms when nobody is in them.
Switch your energy tariff. This is without a doubt the number one way to save money on your bills. You can also opt for a 100% renewable energy tariff.
It’s great PR
Being a green company in this day and age is extremely important for customers. According to a Nielsen study conducted in 2015, young people are much more inclined to buy products and services from companies that make a conscious effort to help the environment, even if they cost more. Obtaining green status may seem like a bit of an ambiguous concept, but you can actually be officially recognised as a green company by the UK government and be afforded certain benefits and bonuses.
One of the key advantages to earning an official green status is that you can receive extremely generous discounts on solar panels through the government. This is generally 30%, which could save you thousands on the initial price and help you see a return on investment even quicker. Generating your own electricity is great physical display of your commitment to eco-friendly practices and also benefits you financially by not having to rely on your energy supplier for your supply. It’s also worth bearing in mind that if you make too much electricity for your real-time consumption, you can feed your extra back into the grid and be paid back using the Feed-In-Tariff
Keep a healthy workforce
Promoting a healthy commute, providing healthy options in your canteen or hosting fitness classes or groups can be a great way to:
Improve the general health and happiness of your workforce
Great a positive public image about your company ethic
Increase workplace productivity
Increase job satisfaction amongst employees, therefore making you more likely to retain workforce
So, we’ve mentioned household and business eco-friendliness, but what about the bridge between the two: the commute. Commuting to work can be one of the worst polluters within your daily activity. If you drive solo, then it most certainly is your most polluting daily activity. No matter your situation, there is always generally an alternative to driving all the way to work. If you live closeby, instead of making the short drive, take the bus, train or bike there. If you live a fair distance away with no access to public transport, drive to a point where you do and park your car up there until you return from work. Keeping yourself fit and healthy is key to a happy lifestyle and increases workplace productivity drastically.