With 81% of the UK’s greenhouse gas emissions coming from carbon dioxide (CO2), the country has been focusing on reducing its carbon footprint in the fight against climate change. The Climate Change Act 2008 has established a carbon budget for the country, hoping to reduce CO2 emissions by 80% from 1990 to 2050, which should prevent global temperatures rising too much over 2°C.
Although the UK has stuck successfully to its budget for the last period (2013 to 2017) and is on track to outperform projections for the 2018 to 2022 period, the Committee on Climate Change (the CCC) predicts this trend will not follow into the next period – 2023 to 2027. Therefore, it is more pressing than ever for everyone to do their bit in reducing the country’s carbon footprint, businesses being no exception to this.
Throughout this piece, we will be exploring how UK businesses can cut down on their carbon footprint. For more articles like this, have a look through TechRound’s list of guides.
How can UK businesses cut their carbon footprint?
Whether your business is big or small, cutting down on its carbon footprint and promoting an eco-friendlier workplace environment can have an effective impact on the overall CO2 emissions produced. It’s all about a team effort, and if every business throughout the UK were to reduce their carbon footprint, this would lead to a significant reduction in country’s overall CO2 emissions.
Below are some simple yet effective ways in which businesses can cut down on their carbon footprint:
- Improve waste facilities
- Reduce business travel
- Office space insulation
- Reduce plastic in office
Improve waste facilities
Improving the management of waste throughout your business can help to significantly reduce its carbon footprint. Ensuring that suitable recycling bins are in plain sight throughout your business can help to encourage recycling. An increase in recycling can lead to less litter on the planet, a reduction in energy consumption, and furthermore a reduction in CO2 emissions.
In addition to the standard recycling bins, if your business deals with food in any way, having designated food bins for compost can help to further reduce your carbon footprint. It does this by decreasing the fossil fuel used in transportation of the food waste, and the greenhouse gases emitted if the food were to decompose on a landfill.
Reduce business travel
Much of a business’s carbon footprint can come from flights and long drives to meetings. The fossil fuel used in both means of transportation can drastically increase the amount of CO2 emitted into the atmosphere, thereby drastically increasing a carbon footprint. By reducing travel of this kind as much as possible, especially considering meetings can be held over Skype, a business can effectively reduce its carbon footprint and company expenses!
Office space insulation
By taking the time to make sure your office space is properly insulated, businesses can save money on energy bills whilst also reducing CO2 emissions produced through this process. Ensuring proper insulation during colder seasons, and adequate airflow on the hotter days (e.g. opening windows and doors) can help to control the temperature of your office space, reduce energy and air-con bills, and finally reduce the CO2 emissions produced from this.
Reduce plastic in the office
Similar to improving the waste disposal through recycling, reducing the amount of plastic throughout the office can help to reduce a business’s carbon footprint. Making anything out of plastic usually involves products that will emit considerable amount of CO2 into the air. By reducing the consumer demand for plastic, you reduce the production of plastic, and subsequently the size of your carbon footprint.