Eco-friendly Tips for Small Businesses

Topics: Small Business

Summary: Small businesses can have a big impact on the environment. Business owners may wonder what they can do to improve environmental wellness, become more sustainable and reduce their carbon footprint. This article shares eco-friendly tips for businesses that can positively impact the environment throughout the year.

The Environmental Impact of Small Businesses

Businesses of all sizes have an effect on the environment every day. Small and medium-sized businesses are considered the foundation of all economies globally, representing over 90% of businesses and employing 70% of individuals worldwide. This sector has a major impact on our planet, from the economy to our personal lives and wellbeing.

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Small businesses, just like every one of us, are responsible for taking care of the earth. Environmental wellness is top of mind for everyone these days, especially as we get ready to celebrate Earth Day. Taking steps to be as eco-friendly as possible can even positively impact your business.

How Can a Business Reduce Its Impact on the Environment?

Small businesses can have a big impact on the environment. One survey revealed that 71% of consumers planned to purchase more sustainable products and pay more for brands that are sustainable. Becoming an eco-friendly small business means mitigating existing waste streams while using energy and resources as efficiently as possible.

Since sustainability is an important factor to all age groups and the eco-conscious consumers who could purchase your products or use your services, it’s important to take steps now to reduce your impact on the environment.

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Eco-Friendly Tips for Small Businesses

Start a recycling program

Recycling is one of the most important things a business can do to become more eco-friendly. When you think of recycling, what comes to mind first is probably offering options to recycle items like paper, cans, plastic, cardboard, etc. But other items can be recycled and kept out of landfills, too, such as electronics, ink cartridges, batteries, old computers and accessories. When it’s time to upgrade these products, find out if the manufacturer offers to recycle them or if a local office supply store will take them for recycling. You could also consider donating items that are still in good working condition.

Cut down on paper waste

Paper accounts for about 26% of total waste at landfills, and offices across the United States use trillions of sheets of paper every year. While of course business owners will still need to utilize paper at times, hundreds of thousands of trees can be saved by switching to online billing measures, saving important files on your computer and taking notes electronically. Plus, cutting down on the amount of paper used saves room in your storage spaces.

Offer remote working options

Working from home has grown in popularity since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. While this is often considered a perk for employees, it can also help reduce your business’s carbon footprint. Fewer vehicles on the road mean less pollution and fossil fuel usage.

Practice green procurement

Whenever possible, source goods and services from local suppliers and those whose goods are produced in a sustainable manner, use less packaging and are free of toxic chemicals. Supporting your local economy by utilizing suppliers in the area also helps cut down on transportation costs.

Use the cloud

Did you know that switching to cloud computing helps reduce carbon emissions? Not only that, but it could help reduce travel and printing costs, too, and there’s no need for your business to spend money on expensive servers that use an excessive amount of power. Try formats like Microsoft Office 365 or Apple iCloud, which allow employees to access their information from anywhere.

Celebrating Earth Day Year Round

Earth Day has been celebrated every April since 1970 in the United States, and globally starting in 1990. The 2022 Earth Day theme is Invest In Our Planet, What Will You Do? All governments, businesses and citizens are accountable for preserving and protecting our health, our families, our livelihoods, and our futures on this planet.

People celebrate Earth Day in various ways that are meaningful to them personally. For some, this may be planting a tree or volunteering at a local environmental organization. For others, it means taking a walk instead of driving to run errands, learning how to compost, or simply enjoying a day surrounded by nature in a park.

Likewise, many businesses across the world celebrate Earth Day, recognizing the need to become more environmentally sustainable. Small business sustainability has been growing in popularity over the last several years. Business owners understand that protecting the environment is vital to the future and should be a focus throughout the entire year, not just on Earth Day. EarthDay.org reminds us that businesses need to act now to help combat climate change, which will continue to damage economies, increase scarcity, and drain profits and job prospects. Sustainability is now the path to prosperity.

AmTrust Financial Helps Protect Your Small Business

AmTrust Financial is a leader in workers’ compensation and other small business insurance solutions that meet the unique needs of small and mid-sized businesses across multiple industries. For more information about our small business insurance products, please contact us today.

This material is for informational purposes only and is not legal or business advice. Neither AmTrust Financial Services, Inc. nor any of its subsidiaries or affiliates represents or warrants that the information contained herein is appropriate or suitable for any specific business or legal purpose. Readers seeking resolution of specific questions should consult their business and/or legal advisors. Coverages may vary by location. Contact your local RSM for more information.
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