Eco News from 4imprint
How much does your firm ‘do’ to help the environment? Businesses and consumers are more clued up about environmental issues than ever before, so it’s an issue that simply can’t be ignored. Yet as the days turn into weeks and the year flies by it may be further down our list of priorities than we’d all hope, despite the obvious advantages that going green can bring.

Not only can ‘being green’ help your firm operate more efficiently, it can do wonders for your reputation. After all, many people’s purchasing decisions are based on a company’s sustainability and environmental credentials. What, then, do you have to lose by making a concerted effort to help the planet in a small way?

Earlier this month (March 2015) the European Environment Agency told the European Commission that while progress has been made in areas like air quality and chemical pollution, much more still needs to be done.

“If the Commission wants to be big on the big things, as President Juncker says, then it has got to start giving environmental policy much greater importance in its priorities,” said Tony Long of the WWF European Policy Office. “It can start by turning off its simplistic and false rhetoric that environmental policy equals administrative burden. The Environmental Agency’s report shows the opposite is the case – green policies promote innovation, jobs and growth.”This is exactly the message that businesses – and SMEs in particular – need to take on board too. Who knows – ‘going green’ could be the move that sets them apart from their rivals and paves the way to a new era of growth and success.

Of course, if you’re a smaller business, you can’t change the world singlehandedly, but there is still plenty you can do to show your customers and clients that you’re serious about the environment. Here are just a few examples…

Recycle and reuse
Chances are you have plenty of stuff on your premises that could be recycled or reused in some way, from cardboard boxes to printer paper and ink cartridges. Find out what you’ve got that could be recycled, and try to buy products made from recycled goods as much as you can, such as office equipment and stationery. And if you provide disposable cups at the water cooler, why not save money in the long run and resources by giving everyone a reusable beaker or reusable travel mugs instead?Buy items in bulk
If you make one large order rather than buy small amounts regularly, it’ll significantly cut down the amount of packaging used and mean fewer deliveries are being made.

Don’t waste electricity
You may be wasting lots of energy leaving computer hardware and lights switched on when they aren’t needed. Encourage staff to turn these items off when they aren’t being used. A great way to do this would be equipping everyone with a power saving button which connects to computers via a USB port and switches it to hibernate mode.

Promote green thinking at work
The great news is none of these suggestions demand any major changes to your business. They’re all just small behavioural changes we can all make. But for these to work, your employees need to buy into your way of thinking, so promote the benefits of being more eco-friendly each day, have motivational eco-messages printed on Sticky Notes or Notepads that are used each day. Acting in a greener and more environmentally-aware way could soon be second nature to your workforce, and that’s both in the office and at home too.

Further Reading / Sources
Europe’s Environment Agency throws down green gauntlet to Juncker Commission, EUbusiness