10 Ways to Make Your Business More Eco-Friendly
Nowadays, everyone is trying to go green -- and for good reason! Being an eco-friendly business not only helps minimize the negative impact your business has on Mother Earth, but it’s also a great way to differentiate your business from competitors. These days, consumers care about where they’re buying products or services from. They care if their priorities and morals line up with other companies.
Whatever the reason, making your business more eco-friendly is always a good thing. In this blog, we’ve outlined a few simple tips to get started. We’ve partnered with our friends over at EnviroCon Termite & Pest Control -- an eco-friendly pest control company in Texas that utilizes fewer chemicals to get the same great results with green alternatives. Read below to find out their 10 biggest tips to help make your business more green!
1. Turn off equipment when it's not being used
One of the largest energy expenditures is leaving devices plugged in an outlet 24/7. Simply unplugging equipment while it’s not being used can reduce energy consumption by 25%, and turning off desktop computers at the end of the day alone can save up to 50% more. Besides saving energy, this will also save money on your electrical bill -- that’s what we call a win-win!
2. Buy Paper that has high recycled content
Whenever possible, skip paper entirely by using email or group messaging-- but if you have to print something out, make sure you are using eco-friendly paper. Well-intentioned business owners or operations managers may look for a recycling symbol on the box when shopping for paper, but this is an unregulated form of greenwashing. Only PCW paper, or post consumer waste paper, is made entirely from the paper collected from recycling bins. Making PCW recycled paper uses 45% less energy and creates half the waste of the traditional papermaking process. In addition to purchasing recycled paper, make sure you recycle whatever you use at the end of each day!
3. Research suppliers who will take back their packaging for reuse
Even though using the recycling system is a great option for paper waste, finding suppliers that will take back their packaging and use it time and time again is the most beneficial form of “reduce, recycle, reuse”. Whether they accept returned egg cartons, sealed air, glass, or styrofoam, anything preventing the need to create more trash will help your business have a smaller environmental footprint.
4. Swap the incandescent bulbs out for compact-fluorescent (CFL) and LED lights
Although CFL and LED lights both have a higher shelf price than standard incandescent bulbs, they actually last up to 10 times longer than cheaper alternatives. You can almost always find a CFL or LED bulb to replace standard bulbs in most fixtures, and making this change can save you up to $200 per bulb over time-- that’s a lot of money!
5. Get an energy audit and make simple changes around your office
Did you know that sealing leaks and cracks in your home can cut up to 20% off the costs of your heating and cooling bills? According to the Department of Energy, this is a large problem for home and business owners alike. Luckily, many states will perform free energy audits, and will pay for some or all of the repairs! (Google “free energy audit” and the name of your state for options).
6. Look into solar power solutions
If you have a freestanding facility, consider installing a few solar panels. Although the investment can seem intimidating at first, the cost reduction and tax incentives offered by many states will balance out the initial cost. In some cases, you may even be able to sell your extra energy back to local power companies and make an additional profit!
7. Use biodegradable cleaners
Every business requires cleaning, regardless of what industry you’re in. Whether you’re cleaning machinery or hardwood floors at the end of your work day, make the transition to eco-friendly formulas. For ideas of what brands to look for, click here.
8. Reconsider Tap Water
Buying bottled water can really add up-- it’s one of the largest unnecessary expenses a company can have. Save money and plastic by investing in something like a Brita filter, and keep it in the fridge for your employees to use!
9. Refurbish Old Furniture
If you’re in need of new furniture, think again! More often than not, old furniture can be refurbished to look just like new, without the environmental impact (or cost!). There are plenty of companies out there that do it, but if you have a smaller office and want to try it out yourself, here are some helpful tips.
10. Switch to an eco-friendly pest control company
Using chemical treatments can have unexpected impacts on your business and the people who interact with your services. In contained areas like storefronts, people can easily have adverse reactions to chemical smells or fumes that are left over from certain spray treatments. In outdoor spaces, the last thing you want is customers coming in direct contact with formulas that were placed in the grass or around the perimeter of your building. Switching to a smarter pest control service will not only aid in the eco-friendliness of your business but is just a smart customer experience decision over all!
Here at Little Miss Recycle, our goal is to help you find sustainable, environmentally-conscious recycling solutions for your office. If you’re looking for easy ways to make your business for more eco-friendly, let us help!
Written By: Rachel Betterbid