Are you looking to save money in your business and improve your environmental performance? This section has advice and links to sources of more information.
The Worcestershire Environment Business Group was set up to help local businesses by providing networking opportunities and regular seminars. For more information, please email Joseph Ellis. The next Worcestershire Environmental Business Group event is on the 21st March and is a seminar to help businesses plan for severe weather.
We encourage all local businesses to sign the Worcestershire Climate Change Pledge. This demonstrates your commitment to suppliers and customers and will help you plan the way forward. You may also find the Sustainable Business Action Pack useful.
Measuring carbon emissions
Measuring carbon emissions and regular monitoring are the first steps towards reduction. Start with this guide on how to measure emissions, as it can be a complicated process.
The Carbon Reduction Commitment will encourage more businesses to measure and reduce carbon emissions, as for businesses using large amounts of energy, allowances will soon need to be purchased for each tonne of CO2 emitted. For the most up to date information on the 'CRC' see the Department for Energy and Climate Change website. Changes to revenue recycling and the starting year for allowance purchase were made in the Comprehensive Spending Review in October 2020.
Reducing your energy usage and dependence on fossil fuels will reduce your bills and reduce your vulnerability to energy security issues. With the new Feed-In Tariffs, investing in micro-generation renewable energy is an attractive prospect for many businesses.
If you are looking for a project with less investment required, then changing the behaviour of your staff can have a massive difference.
Other simple measures such as using automatic meter readers or smart meters, installing installation and reviewing your lighting can all make significant contributions.
If you are a landlord, then there is a wealth of information available. We'd suggest that you start with the Energy Saving Trust's advice for housing professionals. Keep checking back here for information on the Green Deal and the Energy Bill (published December 2010). Initially, these look to have significant impacts on the housing sector, particularly rented accommodation.
Reducing waste = reducing cost. Reducing the waste that you produce will save raw materials and therefore save cost. With the standard landfill tax per tonne of waste now at £48 and due to rise by £8 year on year, reducing waste or recycling makes good economic sense.
Envirowise provides resource efficiency support across the UK. Since 1994, Envirowise has helped industry to save £1 billion from waste reduction initiatives.
Locally, the Duckworth Trust runs the Worcestershire Resource Exchange, a 'scrapstore' which collects clean and safe waste from a range of local industries and businesses, diverting it from landfill. This 'Aladdin's Cave' of low cost reclaimed material is then made available to members as a creative resource for projects. This way, you can reduce landfill costs and contribute towards your corporate sustainability plans by helping the local community.
If you are running a business, you have a responsibility to limit any pollution that may result from your business activities.
The Environment Agency’s Polluter Pays DVD and associated information may be of interest (comes recommended from business owners).
Taking an holistic view of the environmental impacts of your company can help to track and manage costs and ensure compliance with legislation.
For detailed information about the Environmental Management Systems available and the standard ISO 14001, visit the Institute of Environmental Management and Assessment website. Also, Business Link has produced a step by step guide for businesses considering environmental management.
Adaptation to climate change
It is really important the local and national businesses start to consider the impacts of climate change on their core business (business continuity) and on their environmental performance. The Local Climate Impacts Profile and the page on adaptation should prove useful for assessing how the climate is predicted to change in Worcestershire. As we begin to implement risk assessments for the main 'climate change hazards' for the most vulnerable council services, we suggest that businesses do the same. If any business would like some help with this work, then please get in touch with Ruth Johnson, Sustainability Officer, for advice (email@example.com, 01905 722056).
Water is often taken for granted but is still a precious commodity even in the UK. As climate change brings longer, dryer summers, water shortages will become more frequent. The energy and technology required to clean and transport water is frequently overlooked.
Severn Trent can supply water saving kits for businesses.
Getting Greener has been set up to primarily serve the Worcestershire, Warwickshire, Herefordshire, Oxfordshire and Gloucestershire area. They are a local company with the aim of helping our customers to save scarce resources with products, support and advice.
More information on water efficiency is available in the section.
The Energy Saving Trust offer free Green Fleet Reviews to businesses with more than 50 fleet vehicles. These can help you to save up to £1,000 per vehicle each year!
- Carbon Trust
- Energy Saving Trust
- Green Directory (full of ideas and advice, local green businesses to contact)