Reduce your environmental impact

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What does environmental impact really mean?

Reducing your environmental impact involves changes in your behaviour and lifestyle that you can make for the good of the planet. Your environmental impact typically refers to your negative impact on the environment which contributes to climate change, the destruction of ecosystems and even noise pollution.

There are a number of ways that you can reduce your environmental impact, both at home and in the office. Read on to find out both one-time, easy ways to live greener, as well as longer-term changes you can make.

Improve your energy efficiency at home

Ultimately, you are in charge of the impact your home has on the environment. At home, this impact can range from small behaviours that you make in your daily routine, to bigger changes with extremely beneficial consequences.

Switch energy supplier for greener power

This might be the most important change you can make in your home to improve your environmental impact. Where your energy supplier sources their gas and electricity has a direct impact on the environment. Some suppliers have far greener tariffs than others, making their carbon footprint lower. For example, Bulb and Octopus tend to get all of their electricity from 100% green sources, alongside attempts to offset the gas consumption of their customers through renewable schemes and investment in green projects.

Remember. Taking a closer look at where suppliers source their energy can make a huge difference to the environmental impact that your house has. So, for greener energy, start with your supplier.

Energy saving appliances

Did you know that your heating and hot water makes up over half of your energy bill?

This means that you can make some pretty hefty savings by making sure that your boiler and other heating appliances are efficient and not wasteful. So, how can you do this? Firstly, check the state of your boiler. If it’s super old, it’s probably pretty inefficient and thus requires an upgrade. This might be expensive upfront, however you can make huge savings each month on your heating, making up for it! As well as this, you should opt for a smart thermostat and other smart heating controls to ensure that you can track your hot water consumption in real time and make smarter choices. Also, smart controls can control how hard your boiler is working and when, ensuring that it’s not over exerting when not necessary.

Switch to an energy saving boiler

Take a look at your windows!

Why make such efforts to heat your home more efficiently, if a lot of that heat is then going to be lost through windows? There’s usually a lot of room for improvement when it comes to your window insulation. Taking some time to look into the right windows and glass needed for your home is not only a step in a greener direction, but it will also save you money on your energy bills, as you won’t be wasting so much heat!

Don’t leave your appliances on standby

Did you know? You can lose up to £35 a year just by leaving your appliances on standby! But what does standby really mean, and do you really need to switch off all your appliances when you’re not using them?

In short, yes! You might not think that an individual appliance needs to be switched off each time you don’t use it, but in reality, if all your appliances are left switched on all the time, then this can really cause your energy bill to skyrocket. Take care over which appliances need to be left on, and which can be switched off when not in use, and you’ll probably see some changes in your bill.

Small changes include switching to energy saving light bulbs, switching lights off when you leave a room, and going to the local food store, instead of the big supermarket.

Improve your energy efficiency at work

In the office, you might not consider the environmental impact of your daily behaviour, or even the work you do. But it’s not just up to the office manager! The changes you make every day can have a huge impact on the environmental effects of your business.

Reduce, reuse, recycle…

It’s back to basics. Offices tend to use a whole bunch of paper, much of which is never recycled. To ensure that your office is using paper responsibly, place recycling bins in accessible places around the office space and invest in more. You can even go a step further and seek out recycled paper for your employees to use, or even go completely paperless. In such a digital world, we don’t really need to use paper anymore!

On top of this, you can encourage your employees to avoid bringing plastic to the office. Instead of buying company hoodies, go for company tupperware so your employees don’t feel the need to bring their food in a plastic bag.

If you do need to import paper and plastic based materials for your company, consider outsourcing from local companies. This way, the products at least don’t have to travel very far to get to you.

Reduce, reuse, recycle

Travel less, or travel green

Despite the increasingly globalised nature of business, remote work is becoming more and more common, especially in a world plagued by COVID-19. You might find that your employees are travelling less for work and working remotely more than coming to the office. Speaking environmentally, these changes are pretty beneficial and should actually be continued to reduce your business’ environmental impact.

Take a train instead of a plane!Of course, this depends on the nature of your business. If you own a shop and your presence is required, then try to ensure that your mode of transportation to and from work is carbon neutral, or at least environmentally friendly. Cycle, walk or car share with others! If your company requires all of your employees to work from the office, then encourage a car sharing scheme whereby they can take turns to drive each other to work.

Moreover, if national or international travel is a must, then try to encourage train travel rather than planes. However, cutting this mode of travel back entirely would be more preferable.

Go for a green business energy deal

Most energy suppliers in the UK provide green business deals. This means that your electricity is 100% renewable, and your gas usage is offset. Bulb, for example, have a renewable energy plan for your business if you want to start making greener choices for your place of work. Green Energy UK claim to be the greenest energy supplier in the UK, providing 100% green electricity and 100% green gas as well.

Redactor

Written by eleanor

Updated on 7 Oct, 2020