For decades, businesses across the globe have been operating with little to no regard for our planet. Today, we are in a climate crisis and the way the world operates is changing. The individual making lifestyle changes to reverse the effects of global warming will only do so much, corporations must do their part on a larger scale.
So, how are businesses adapting to sustainability? Read on to discover the top sustainable business choices of 2021 and what corporations are doing to make their difference.
What is Environmental Sustainability?
The U.S Environmental Protection Agency defines Environmental Sustainability as meeting today’s needs without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs. Sustainability is all about taking action to help our planet in the long term, balancing our social and economic needs with the environment. According to the UN’s report on climate change, to save our planet we must limit global warming to 1.5 degrees celsius in less than twenty years. Reversing the effects of climate change won’t be easy but with environmental sustainability, it can be done.
What are Corporations Doing to Make Their Difference?
1. Sustainable investment
Have you heard of ESG investment? Environment, Social and Governance (ESG) describes a form of investment with the environment, and social good at it’s core. Green investment encourages companies to embrace sustainability, and put their money into funds which will work at helping our environment. As a result of the climate change crisis, investors are beginning to look to the future, not only for their own economic means but to help lower our carbon emissions. Today, 70% of investors say they would not invest money into a company with a negative impact on the environment. With culture changing, organisations are beginning to realise the importance of non-financial considerations in their business decisions, and investing sustainably is now the norm.
2. Using sustainable suppliers and products
Have you noticed some of your favourite brands shouting about their “ethical materials” or their “fair trade produce”?. This year food, lifestyle and fashion brands are moving to a more sustainable business model in an attempt to curb their carbon footprint and attract a new generation of consumers who care about the environment. It is becoming ever more important to the individual that what they consume is ethical, and businesses are cottoning onto it.
3. Renewable energy
More than ever before companies are switching to renewable energy sources. It is predicted that in the next five years wind and solar power will exceed that of coal and gas. Renewable energy sources are advantageous not only because of their environmental impact, but also because they are becoming the cheapest form of energy. With 20 fossil fuel companies making up a third of all greenhouse emissions globally, switching to renewable energy sources is becoming increasingly popular, and could make all the difference in saving our planet. The higher the demand for renewable energy, the cheaper it will become.
4. Green transport
A few years ago some may have viewed owning an electric car as inconvenient and expensive. Today, car charging ports are popping up all over the place and electric vehicles are becoming a mainstream purchase. With 12,437 UK electric vehicle registrations in August of this year alone, electric vehicles now hold a market share of 18.3%. Individuals and organisations are catching onto the numerous benefits electric vehicles hold, and it is only set to increase. Electric vehicles emit no carbon emissions into the atmosphere making this an impactful choice for organisations looking to limit their effect on the planet.
5. Offsetting CO2 emissions
Carbon offsetting is a way of compensating for your carbon footprint by funding initiatives which help the environment. Whether it’s planting trees or ESG investment, businesses are looking to offset their carbon footprint as a way to make up for their impact on the environment. Whilst some view it as a form of greenwashing, others look at carbon offsetting as a way for organisation’s to take responsibility for their actions. Either way, it is an effective way to help the environment and is becoming widely popular in 2021.
6. Work from home culture
Working from home has become the new norm with many organisations opting for a hybrid model post-covid. In fact, you may be reading this from your home office as we speak, but I bet you hadn’t thought about the environmental impact of your new work model. It has been argued that the most efficient way to reduce our carbon footprint on a large scale is to cut down on commuter travel, and the pandemic has done this. Working from home not only means less cars on the road, but less energy consumption in office buildings across the globe. Whatever your opinion on working from home, you cannot deny its impact on the environment.
Sustainability at GearedApp
The way we view the environment as a society is changing by the day, and how businesses operate must adapt to keep up.
At GearedApp, we pride ourselves on our Tech for Good values meaning that the environment is at the forefront of our mind. Planting trees to offset our carbon footprint, hosting team eco hackathons and shopping exclusively from small, local suppliers are just a few of the things that we do to make our difference to the planet.
To find out more about technology and its impact on the environment keep reading here.
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