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Travelling to work, what you eat, how you live at home, all these things contribute to your carbon footprint. Your carbon footprint is the amount of greenhouse gases that are emitted through the activities that you partake in daily. It is the way that we measure the impact of a person, business or country on climate change.
So, how can you reduce your carbon footprint? It all starts by thinking about the choices that we make daily, and how these choices can become more climate-friendly.
We made a conscious decision to evaluate all areas of our business which contributed to our very own carbon footprint. We made changes to the way we conducted our business to ensure that we were reducing any negative impact on the environment, reducing our carbon footprint. We applied for, and were awarded, B Corporation status. As a B Corporation Business we are held to the highest standards of social and environmental performance, transparency and accountability.
Here are some of the things that we looked at and some ideas to help you get started today!
Considering other modes of transport that don’t burn fossil fuels can make a big impact on the environment.
If you live close enough to your workplace you can ride your bike which is a great way to reduce your carbon footprint. As a business you can add bike shelters and stands so that employees have somewhere safe to store their bikes. You can choose public transport to avoid car trips just for you, or share a lift with a colleague. Working from home where possible, even for just some of your hours can also help to reduce those car trips. Switching to an electric or hybrid car is another option if you need to use your car regularly. As a business you can install car chargers at the work place and add electric cars to the fleet of company cars.
You can turn your heating down by just a degree or two and it will already make a difference. Taking shorter showers to save water and the energy taken to heat the water. Unplugging electronic equipment when not in use or fully charged, such as turning computers off at night, will all make a difference. Here at Verve we now turn all lights and electronic equipment off when we aren’t using it and we have saved around 25% on our bills each month!
You can also take steps to make an effort to recycle as and where you can, every little bit can make a difference! Putting in recycling points at work can help to encourage staff to recycle also. And finally, choosing energy efficient products where possible will also help to reduce that carbon footprint.
Try and invest in sustainable clothing, buy responsibly made clothes made from recycled material or with organic materials. Alternatively purchase second hand clothes, swap clothes or rent them from companies that offer this as an option.
Taking a look at what you put on your plate each day is one of the biggest ways to reduce your carbon footprint. This is because the meat and dairy industries are some of the top contributors to global greenhouse gas emissions. It is also a great way to lead a healthier lifestyle by adding more fruit and veg to your diet. If you don’t want to give up meat you can start by just having meat free meals or days, or try substituting meat products with plant based alternatives. If you replace one meal a day with a plant based option you could reduce your water and carbon footprint by up to 25%
It is also key to consume local and seasonal products as much as possible, this avoids foods that don’t grow in this country in the winter or summer being flown in from overseas, or using intensive farming methods such as pesticides and greenhouses to force them to grow at times they otherwise wouldn’t. These both add significantly to your carbon footprint.
Waste is a big contributing factor to your carbon footprint, so it is worthwhile making a conscious decision to only buy what you need and not more. This can apply to food, clothing and any material possessions. You can add water meters at the workplace as well as encouraging staff prudence with electricity.