Article Link: https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/324150
By: Syed Balkhi
Going green isn’t only better for the environment — it can also be beneficial for your business’s bottom line. Pivoting towards more eco-friendly processes can save your company money, and it can also add to the list of things that set you apart from your competition. If you’re looking to reduce your business’s carbon footprint, here are four
Embrace a remote work environment.
Ditching your office and going remote is one of the most effective ways to make your business more eco-friendly. Think about it: You’ve got employees driving to and from work every day, wasting time and energy sitting int raffic. Transitioning to a remote work environment will not only save you money but also cut down on pollution. And you don’t have to go completely remote — consider an eco-friendly initiative like introducing work-from-home Wednesdays (or Fridays).
In fact, according to data from Global Workplace Analytics, if people with compatible jobs worked from home just half the time, the national savings would likely total over $700 billion per year, and the greenhouse gas reduction could be the equivalent of taking the entire New York State workforce off the road permanently. Plus, the typical business could also save $11,000 per person per year, while telecommuters would likely save between $2,000 and $7,000 per year. Tech tools available today — such as Slack for workplace communciation, Asana for task planning and Zoom for video meetings — can make it easy for your team to collaborate from home.
Recycle your e-waste.
As tech advances, people continue to produce a lot of electronic waste, or “e-waste” — think cell phones, tablets, computers, televisions and more. Predictions pegged 2018’s global e-waste production at about 49.8 million metric tons. Unwanted devices often end up in landfills or is shipped to developing countries, where the emissions from shredding, burning and dismantling these products is damaging to human health and the environment.
You can do your part by ensuring your team correctly recycles unwanted electronics — search online for e-waste recycling locations in your city. Your office could also get involved with donating devices to a charity such as Cell Phones for Soldiers. The organization sells smartphones and tablets to electronics restorers or recyclers, then uses the proceeds to purchase prepaid international calling cards for troops and provide emergency financial assistance to veterans.
Opt for green web hosting.
Did you know that the internet puts a significant strain on the environment? Since 2010 Greenpeace has been calling on major internet companies to power their data centers with renewable energy. Facebook and Google have already committed and your company can do your part too. By choosing green web hosting you can ensure that part of the energy comes from a renewable energy source.
There are a number of affordable web hosting solutions that will help your company reduce its carbon footprint including GreenGeeks, HostPapa, iPage and more. With green web hosting solutions you can make sure your company’s website is up and running at all times without having to worry about its adverse environmental impact.
Choose alternative energy sources.
If you want to save money on your energy costs and do something beneficial for the environment, consider making use of alternative energy sources such as solar, wind or geothermal. Depending on your office’s location, you could potentially install solar panels on the roof or use energy from a nearby wind turbine farm.
Making this type of change doesn’t necessarily have to break the bank. You can check out the Small Business Association for local, regional and state energy efficiency programs that offer grants and loans for businesses that make eco-friendly upgrades. For instance, the California Solar Initiative offers cash rebates for every watt of solar energy installed on businesses, homes, farms, schools, government and nonprofit organizations.