These days everybody wants to become more environmentally friendly. But is it really possible to become carbon neutral? And what are the advantages for companies that achieve carbon-neutrality? Apart from the obvious environmental benefits, improving your environmental impact can also give you a commercial advantage. It is also likely that new carbon regulations will be introduced in the next few years.
While it may seem like an unattainable dream, there are many ways in which your company can move towards becoming carbon-neutral. There are many advantages of sustainability and green planning. Green policies help to attract the best staff and achieve better customer retention. Sustainability also increases investment. Making green adjustments to your business practices can also save you money in the medium term.
Attracting and Retaining The Best Staff
As green issues become more prominent, a new generation of environment-focused workers has different priorities. Green policies are now high on the list of criteria that candidates look for. More and more companies are reporting that candidates ask about a company's green credentials at interviews. The brightest and best are now drawn to carbon-neutral companies that focus on their green credentials.
Young professionals today are very focused on environmental concerns. When you involve the workforce in your carbon reduction policies, you'll create workplace loyalty. For many, it is important that their company's policies on the environment and sustainability align with their own. Listen to, and take on board, ideas about sustainability from your staff, and create an atmosphere that is welcoming and inclusive.
Customers Prefer Environmentally-Aware Companies
It is not only workers who prioritize environmental concerns. These days customers, too, are moving to companies with green policies. Becoming carbon-neutral could help to attract and retain customers as well as staff. It has been shown that companies with a focus on sustainability have better customer retention than those that don't. Make sure your customers know about your carbon reduction policies.
Not only are customers choosing more environmentally-friendly and sustainable companies, but they are also willing to pay more to do business with a green company. Sustainable supply chains can give your business the edge over competitors. This means that sustainability is just as important for business-to-business trade. Many companies closely monitor the green credentials of their suppliers to ensure a low-carbon supply chain.
Carbon Reduction Can Reduce Your Costs
While most carbon reduction strategies begin with investment, many measures have long-term savings. A reduction in energy consumption for heating and lighting will produce a reduction in overhead in the long term. Sustainable production practices may also reduce the cost of raw materials. The more measures put in place, the greater the savings to be had. Green investment pays off over time.
It has been shown that carbon-neutral businesses get a higher return on their investment than their competitors. Sustainable products have shown higher growth in recent years than similar competitors. So, to make the most of your carbon reduction measures, make sure your customers know about them. When building your green strategy it's a good idea to integrate it into your marketing strategy.
Carbon Neutral Businesses Attract More Investment
Not only can carbon reduction measures reduce your bills, but they also attract investment. Many investment providers now offer green funds to allow customers to invest in low-carbon and sustainable enterprises. This focus on sustainability in the investment market is likely to grow in future years. Improving your green credentials will take your company to the top of the list for sustainable investors.
Be Ready For Environmental Regulations
Climate-related regulations, taxes and charges are only going to grow in the coming years. It is important not to wait for these measures to be introduced. Companies that have already invested in carbon reduction will have an advantage over those caught on the back foot. Working towards carbon neutrality will reduce your company's liability for taxes that will inevitably be introduced.
How to Achieve Carbon-Neutrality
Begin by assessing your carbon use at all company sites. Energy efficiency is a good place to start. It should also save more than it costs. Consider other companies whose services you use. Can you use a carbon-neutral delivery service? Are your suppliers doing enough to reduce their carbon footprint? Consider taking your custom to those suppliers with reduced carbon usage.
While the measures listed above will go some way to achieving carbon neutrality, you'll probably need to consider offsetting some of your carbon usages to reach full neutrality. Many companies offer carbon offsetting for a monthly fee depending on the amount of carbon to offset. Offsetting projects include tree planting and reducing deforestation. Offsetting should be part of an overall carbon reduction strategy.
Going Carbon Neutral Will Boost Your Business
There are multiple advantages of carbon neutrality. Green policies improve recruitment and retention of staff. Customers are actively seeking out sustainable companies and companies with green policies have better customer retention. Investors are steadily moving their money to green companies. Sustainable products are increasing in popularity every day. So, now really is the time to invest in a long-term carbon reduction strategy.
Lynda Arbon is a passionate and enthusiastic health blogger. She likes keeping herself updated on health trends and blogs. Her favourite pastime is learning history and solving crossword puzzles. Follow her on Twitter.
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