The opportunities and possibilities are endless when it comes to applying technology to business. Technology has affected the way people buy and sell products, offer services, market their goods and more importantly, communicate with one another.
Tech products also made breakthroughs in the fields of healthcare, engineering, aviation and many other industries. With a click of a button, it is now possible for a business to establish its global presence and make its products available to international consumers.
If you are a business owner, you are probably a living proof of how tech helps you accelerate your business by using online tools, software, apps and many more. But do you know that as a business, you can also take part in addressing major environmental issues just by making practical changes in the way you use technology? Here are some tips on how you can make a difference.
“Think before you print”… “Save paper, save trees, save the world”… “Go green”…
These are just some of the more familiar email footers reminding employees to be mindful of paper use. For many years, there have also been countless of recycling initiatives being implemented on a global scale. However, according to 2017 statistics, deforestation is actually accelerating.
Forests are very important as 1.6 billion people and many living species rely on the benefits forests offer. They cover around 30 percent of the Earth’s land area so when forests are compromised, this threatens the lives of many animals and plants. It also impacts the livelihood of many people.
There are many causes of deforestation including forest fires, degradation due to climate change, agriculture, ranching and development. One primary cause, however, is the practice of irresponsible logging. Despite massive efforts to put a stop to illegal logging, it continues to be a primary reason why forests are being cleared out.
While major industry players have to take action and reinstate their commitments to avert further damage brought about by deforestation, even small business owners can do their part to contribute to the solution using technology.
One obvious yet often overlooked way is to monitor the physical printouts being consumed by your company. Even with everything going digital, office printing is still a necessity. The key to minimizing excessive printing is to keep track of your consumption. You can now choose printers equipped with features that are able to track and log your printing history. You can also avail of managed print services that can help you minimize print costs and give you an in-depth report of printing usage. Knowing how much exactly you’re printing out can help you evaluate how you can decrease your paper printouts.
After you throw something in the trash, you often just forget about it without ever thinking where it will end up. The unfortunate reality is, waste disposal is a serious problem. Globally, people generate 1.3 billion tons of waste each year. The UK alone produces more than 100 million tons of waste every year. To put this in perspective, one ton is about the weight of a small car. And what’s more alarming is that in less than two hours, the waste produced by the people in the UK would fill the Royal Albert Hall in London.
What many people seem to forget is that non-biodegradable wastes do not disappear, instead they remain to pollute the land, seas and air. This pollution can be toxic to the environment and can affect people’s well-being.
Industrial companies of any size who generate commercial waste have the responsibility to employ waste management strategies to ensure that they are not contributing to the problem. But even if you are just a small business, there are smart ways you can adopt in order for you to minimize the waste your company produces.
Start by digitizing your files and only keeping soft copies of documents. Have a strict policy on what emails can be printed and employ a recycling policy for paper and plastic usage. Doing these can help reduce paper waste in your office.
Another method is by being mindful of your company’s electronic waste. Phones, computers, laptops, monitors and other office equipment end up in landfills and these usually have components that can be toxic. To minimize the impact, make sure that your company has an effective equipment inventory system especially if you have a lot of employees. When you can accurately track the devices your company owns, it can help you avoid unnecessary procurement of electronic devices and duplication of these electronics.
There are many factors that affect climate change. While some thought leaders deny that global warming is real, scientific evidences point that the Earth is indeed getting warmer and the negative impacts of this will outweigh any positive effects it may cause.
The consensus of the global scientific community is that this phenomenon is a man-made occurrence. This is because the levels of carbon emissions being released to the atmosphere are too high and cannot be explained by natural factors alone. What this means is that it is very critical that everyone should take steps to reduce their carbon footprint, including businesses.
There are various ways you can implement in order to reduce your company’s carbon emissions. Adopting these methods will not only modernize your business but also promote sustainability. One practical approach is to utilize Cloud technology instead of physical computer servers that require 24/7 power. Consuming less energy means lesser carbon emissions, plus you will also get the benefit of lowering energy costs for the company.
Another solution is to implement building automation systems which can smartly control heating, cooling, lighting and other electrical devices. Even if you only have a small office space, you can still use smart devices so you can automatically or remotely control energy use in your offices.
Doing your part makes a difference
Being proactive in addressing environmental concerns should be a part of every company’s corporate social responsibility. As a business leader, you should ensure that the way you do business is not contributing to the problem, rather, you should take a stand and promote sustainable business practices that will definitely be more beneficial for everyone in the long run.
- 3 Big Environmental Issues Your Business Can Tackle with Technology - March 10, 2019