Climate change and its effects are real. Science proves it. Decades of air pollution has caused excessive amounts of greenhouse gases to be trapped in the Earth’s atmosphere, leading to a variety of extreme weather events. According to the National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s (NASA) climate change page, its observable effects include sinking glaciers, intensified heatwaves and accelerated rise in sea levels across the globe.
The damage and costs of climate change are expected to increase over time, especially if companies and people continue to generate greenhouse gases (GHG).
Why Your Business Should be More Eco-Friendly
The Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) latest data stated that the transportation sector contributes most (28 percent) of the GHG emissions in the US. These emissions came primarily from diesel and gasoline vehicles, which emit GHGs like carbon dioxide, nitrous oxide and methane.
Electricity came in second with 27 percent, industry came in third with 22 percent, commercial and residential came in fourth with 12 percent, and finally, agriculture contributed 10 percent. The EPA also found that since 1990, America’s GHG emissions increased by 3.7 percent. They attributed this to a variety of factors like greater heating and cooling needs due to extreme weather conditions.;
Lessening your company’s greenhouse gas emissions is more than a valiant effort. It’s something that affects your customers’ perception of your business, too.
According to a 2017 study involving over 1,000 American respondents, over 87 percent of people will have a more positive image of a business that supports environmental protection. About 88 percent of them stated that they’ll be more loyal to a company that makes environmental conservation efforts.
Here are ways to make your business more environmentally sustainable.
Make Use of Energy Efficient Appliances
When your business uses energy, it prompts power companies to burn fossil fuels and emit GHGs to provide you with the power you need. Apart from turning off and unplugging devices when they’re not in use, there are a variety of ways for your business to use less power. One way to do this is to invest in energy-efficient appliances and equipment. Newer and more advanced appliances are often more efficient. This is because government standards, especially in the US, require manufacturers to make more efficient models of their products.
If you have a struggling appliance that’s about a decade old, it’s better to replace it with a newer model. Make sure you’re getting an efficient replacement by looking for an Energy Star sticker. Energy Star is a government-backed company that reviews and rates different types, brands, and models of equipment and appliance. The higher the rating, the more efficient an appliance. You want a value that’s above 70, as it’s the rating that’s considered to have excellent efficiency.
Mind Your Water
Water is a limited resource, even if you can get it from multiple sources. Your water also gets filtered before it makes it to your office’s faucets. This process takes a lot of energy to do. You should make sure to save every drop of water that your business uses. An excellent way to do this is to use water-efficient plumbing fixtures. Look for ones with a WaterSense sticker.
WaterSense is an EPA program that encourages water efficiency. Its stickers are given to plumbing equipment and fixtures that are efficient at conserving water resources. For example, the average showerhead uses 2.5 gallons of water per minute (gpm). WaterSense-labeled ones are required to use no more than 2.0 gpm. You should also ensure that the stormwater discharges from your site aren’t riddled with pollution when you expel them. A stormwater pollution prevention plan or SWPP ensures that your site runs cleanly and you avoid costly EPA fines.
3. Consider Alternative Energy Sources
Most of the power from America’s power grid comes from the burning of fossil fuels. If you want to rely less on this source, consider alternative sources like solar energy. It’s more accessible and affordable than ever. You can easily find high-quality panels from Amazon. Plus, you can also get a federal tax credit and state-based incentives when you utilize solar energy. These incentive programs vary from area to area, so check with your local government to find out if you’re eligible for them.
Making your business more sustainable isn’t just beneficial for the environment, it’s also great for your bottom line. Customers love companies that make an effort to make their operations more environmentally-friendly. Plus there are a variety of tax credits and incentives you can claim with your efforts. These suggestions offer effective and efficient ways to make your business more sustainable.