With all the news recently about reducing plastic waste and the UK Government now proposing a ban on certain single-use plastic, I’m sure many businesses are very aware how important it is to look for ways to reduce their own carbon footprint and encouraging schemes for employees to live greener lives. Research also shows that more than a third of young professionals value working for a caring and responsible employer over earning a higher salary!

So below we list a few ideas that would be helpful to introduce into organisations large and small to get the eco-warrier ball rolling:

An Environmental policy

This is a great way to present to anyone interested in your business the initiatives and targets which your organisation is committed to. It’s also great to be transparent, which will resonate well with customers and contribute to your Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) strategy.

A Cycle to work scheme

Cycling is great exercise and one of the greenest ways to travel to the office and there is now Government funding for any business looking to encourage it, Cyclescheme gives your employees the chance to buy a bike tax-free.

Car share schemes

These schemes are a great way to reduce the number of single use vehicles clogging up your carpark. They will also help reduce the number of vehicles on roads and lower your employees’ carbon footprint.

Green computers

Yes they really do exist and can make a big impact on your organisation’s carbon footprint. When old machines need replacing make sure to check out the ethical and environmental records of different manufacturers.

Green certifications 

These provide businesses with a great opportunity to focus on a goal and then work together to achieve it. Having a green accreditation is great for publicity too and can be featured on your website and letterheads.

The ISO’s (International Organization for Standardization) 14000 family of standards provides practical tools for companies and organisations of all kinds looking to manage their environmental responsibilities.

Printing guidelines/recycled paper

Despite our best intentions to avoid printing documents needlessly, it can’t always be avoided, however, it makes sense to impose some level of guidelines for which documents are printed, to avoid waste of both ink and paper.

Where possible, how about printing on both sides of the paper? We know for important documents and contracts this isn’t possible, however, there’s little reason to avoid this when printing in-house.

Did you know it takes a staggering amount of energy to produce paper but recycled paper is produced with 28-70% less energy and you’ll also be supporting the UK economy as recycled paper is often made on our shores.