Going green is high on the agenda for the public, with many consumers willing to pay more for ethically-sourced products or using the services of environmentally friendly businesses. However, with the UK government’s agenda regarding climate change up for debate, people are starting to wonder how they can take the matter in their own hands.
This article discusses the government’s approach towards the environment, how this is linked to business energy output and the ways in which entrepreneurs, looking for new career opportunities, can introduce their own green agenda into their own or a new company’s office.
The Government Agenda
Climate change has been a hotly-debated topic of late, with President Trump across the pond seemingly waging a war on the environment, often voicing his disbelief
about the existence of global warming. In the UK, in one of her first moves as Prime Minister, Theresa May abolished the Department for Energy and Climate, moving their responsibility over to a new Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy. This caused outrage from environmental campaigners, who were concerned about climate change becoming an afterthought.
Despite the debate surrounding this bold move from our Conservative government, one thing that’s clear is their belief that climate change is connected to business and industry, and how it should be tackled together. Although the government’s agenda is still unclear, we can take our own steps to run greener businesses and help to protect the future of the environment.
Business and the Climate
There has always been a strong link between businesses and climate change, dating back to the Industrial Revolution in the early nineteenth century. In modern times, environmental business concerns come from the exhaust fumes from fleets of company vehicles and delivery vans, the energy used (and wasted) when running an office and the many workers who commute into work every day by car.
So, how can we make sure our businesses are kinder to the environment? One of the main things you could consider is the energy usage in your workplace.
Which Office Type is Better for the Environment?
Green working spaces have begun to spring up all around the world, with the Edge in Amsterdam recently named one of the greenest buildings in the world by Bloomberg. Its design includes solar panels on the roof and along its southern as well as thick load-bearing concrete that helps to regulate heat. As a result, the Edge uses an impressive 70% less electricity than a typical office building!
When choosing an office space, picking a serviced office could be more efficient for a business. The spaces are often more flexible compared to conventional offices and also more efficient. Infrequently used areas like meeting and conference rooms still use power, even when they’re unoccupied, so the pay-per-use basis available on some serviced apartments may save energy.
What Can You Bring to The Table?
For entrepreneurs looking for a new career that supports Eco development in the office space, considering aspects further than a job role might allow you stand out from the crowd. For example, the office build, age and supporting equipment can reduce a strain on you within a potential new position. Light is a hugely importing aspect behind an office, so looking for a new job which supports our daily need for fresh air and sunlight is something to consider.
In addition, as all the equipment is already provided for you, it’s likely to be the high-spec and up-to-date. Their energy-efficient ventilation, lighting, heating and cooling systems are perhaps something that your small business may not have been able to afford otherwise. There are many abiding companies who are completely on board with green agendas, however it’s also good to offer your own print on office changes when starting a new role.
Introduce Your Own Green Agenda
As well as choosing an efficient office space in terms of utilities, you may want to encourage your new staff around you to cut down on their energy usage. You could introduce incentives and encourage:
The use of recycling bins in the workplace
Turning off equipment when it’s not in use, including computers, lights and printers
Car sharing, or walking/cycling into work
Other tips for saving energy in your office include replacing your lightbulbs with energy-efficient LED bulbs – they use 75% less energy than standard bulbs whilst still having the same output. Also, set the timer on your office thermostat so that there’s a maximum temperature limit and so that it switches off whenever the office is unoccupied on evenings and weekends. Remember, if you’re starting a new role, it would be better to offer green advice gradually and not storm for immediate changes, gentle improvements to office environments might stand you in good stead for the future and your personal progression.
Although it’s unclear what the government’s green legislation will be, businesses can take matters into their own hands and follow green practices to help protect the environment. This comes in two parts – by choosing an energy-efficient serviced office and by encouraging your employees to follow environmentally-friendly practices in the workplace. Let the decision start with you as you look for a new role, in which hopefully shows your future to be bright but a little greener.