It’s one thing to start a new venture and focus on cashflow and profit. However, new-age entrepreneurs have a new challenge where they need to incorporate eco-friendly initiatives into their organisation.
Sustainability used to be a word that would sit far in the back of entrepreneur’s minds. However, the threat of climate change and global warming means that entrepreneurial growth strategies must incorporate sustainable practices.
Fortunately, businesses can easily implement this by leveraging technology, partnerships and setting the status quo for their organisations sustainability habits. Here are some ways startups can implement eco-friendly practices in their business.
1. Recycle your printer’s ink cartridges
Up to 10 million ink cartridges end up in landfill every year. It’s estimated that an ink cartridge will take up to 450 years to decompose, destroys the natural habitats of wildlife and contributes to the overall destruction of the ecosystem for future generations. Businesses can partner with organisations that provide an ink cartridge collection service to help organisations recycle their used ink cartridges.
Many components within the cartridge such as the plastics and metals can be recycled and manufactured into other items, thus closing the sustainability loop and minimising businesses ink cartridge contributions to landfill. All branded printer cartridges such as the Canon ink cartridges can be implemented into the recycling program.
2. Purchase reusable items
Waste is a huge problem and a lot of it is a result of organisations purchasing disposable items. Employees are encouraged to use an item once and then throw it away. An eco-friendly solution would be purchasing reusable items to prevent the accumulation of waste. Some things that should be considered are:
- Encouraging employees to use glass, ceramic or reusable plastic cups instead of disposable ones.
- Encouraging employees to clean up spills with a cloth or rag rather than a disposable paper towel.
- Encourage employees to use metal utensils instead of plastic ones.
3. Partner with a renewable energy provider
Most of the world’s energy is generated by burning coal, oil and natural gases. Many businesses are on an electrical grid that is powered by these non-renewable energy sources. If there’s an electricity provider that provides solar, hydro or wind energy, see if you can make the switch and reduce your organisation’s contribution to carbon emissions.
4. Encourage the use of eco-friendly transportation
Most employees commute to work in their private vehicles, which contributes to an enormous amount of carbon emissions. Businesses can encourage employees to commute to work by incentivising them to cycle, walk, carpool or catch public transport. Some businesses in the United States even offer their employees bonuses for renting or purchasing a property that is closer to the office.
5. Digitize your documents and processes
Aspire to create a paperless office by digitising your documents and processes. View and save documents on computers and the cloud and make them accessible on tablets, laptops and smartphones. Leverage cloud-based software to improve processes that will allow your business to operate quickly and become more agile.
6. Invest in LED light solutions
Lighting accounts for approximately 15% of an organisation’s energy consumption. Businesses can reduce their energy consumption by switching from incandescent lights to energy efficient solutions such as LEDs.
Although the bulbs are more expensive than incandescent bulbs, they last longer and consume up to 60% less energy. Not only will it help reduce the organisation’s impact to the world’s carbon footprint, but it will also minimise the business’s electrical consumption costs.
7. Invest in energy-efficient appliances
Offices tend to use a lot of electrical equipment that rarely gets turned off. That’s why investing in energy efficient equipment that will power down when it is not in use will help with your organisation’s sustainability efforts. Consider energy-efficient televisions, computers and printers.
Your startup can make a difference from the outset. Look at the practices and sustainability objectives that you would like your organisation to set and execute a plan using the suggestions above to minimise your business’s contribution to the world’s carbon footprint.