Tips to Reduce the Environmental Impact of Your Business – Guest post by Emma Joyce

Even if you’re running an online business, it will still have a carbon footprint. The good part is the fact that there’s always something you can do about it, even if it’s just switching to green hosting instead of using regular servers. In other industries, nonetheless, things aren’t nearly that simple. Here, you have many different aspects to look out for, different things to keep in mind and different fields to improve, in order to be as eco-friendly as possible. Even in industries considered to be major polluters, you get to make a massive change by taking the right course of action. Here are several tips and tricks to help you get there in no time.

1.      Food industry

First of all, the way in which the food industry impacts on the planet starts with the process of growing food. Certain methods have a negative impact on air and water pollution and result in a critical loss of wildlife. Still, when it comes to fast food joints, catering businesses and similar venues, the major problem is not the acquisition of food but something entirely opposite – the disposal of leftovers. In theory, most of the food components are bio-degradable, with the exception of containers and packaging. Needless to say, this is an issue that requires a much deeper and more thorough analysis.

2.      The construction industry

construction.jpg

As for the construction industry, the environmental impact depends on more than several factors. The site conditions (how erosive the soil is) may require some extra caution or even mandate the choice of equipment. The change in construction activities is yet another thing to watch out for. Nonetheless, the biggest single issue you have to focus on are the materials used and the debris. First of all, materials that aren’t eco-friendly tend to feed industries that are harmful to the environment. In this way, your construction business is a part of the problem, instead of being a part of the solution.

Other than this, the use of old materials is directly affected by the skill of the employees. Sometimes, the construction is directly succeeding the demolition of the old place and, in that case, the majority of old materials (timber, brick and other elements) can be immediately reused.

3.      Oil industry

When it comes to the oil industry, a lot of people immediately imagine it as an ecological disaster, however, there are two sides to this coin. On the one hand, sure, the oil industry is far from being considered a clean industry but, then again, the degree to which it’s harmful to the environment is determined by many different factors. For instance, adequate solids control equipment can create a system that keeps the fluid spills (caused by drilling) to a minimum. When you pause for a moment to consider the sheer amount of systems, devices and entire industries that run on this fuel, you might just get to see the magnitude of this change.

4.      Office workoffice.jpg

The carbon footprint of working in the office mostly comes from two things. First, offices are massive power consumers, seeing as how they need a lot of electronic devices in order for workers to run their day-to-day jobs. Second, there is a statistic that an average office worker prints about 10,000 sheets of paper every single year. Now multiply this with the number of people in an average office and you’ll get the idea of just how big of an issue this is. Finally, the toner ink and the disposal of toner ink cartridges can be just as big of an issue.

5.      Transportation

Regardless if you’re a taxi, Uber or a truck driver, your commutes are contributing to the CO2 emission, thus polluting the environment. In the introduction, we’ve already mentioned the phenomenon of online businesses. Well, the only way in which they interact with their customers is through their delivery system. The environmental impact of this delivery system can be drastically affected, for the better, with the help of efficient fleet management. For this purpose, you can hire seasoned fleet managers and pay more attention if you’re outsourcing your delivery.

As you can see, the excuse that it’s just that kind of industry is… well, just an excuse. Sure, you can’t expect for a construction site and a small office to have the same environmental impact but, with enough effort, the difference made can be more than drastic. However, this isn’t easy nor does it happen on its own. It takes a lot of active effort, yet, it’s an effort that we must all invest.

 

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