Every business affects the environment in some way—just like individuals, but on a larger scale. The degree of this impact varies with the type of business involved; for example, some companies produce or work with vast amounts of harmful chemicals they have to deal with, while others simply expend energy to keep the lights on.
Ignoring the variables here, every business has some responsibility to curb its impact on the environment through the initiation, execution, and oversight of environmentally friendly policies and procedures.
Procedures to Maximize Environmental Friendliness
These are just some of the general procedures your business should be following:
1. Root cause analysis. Not everything at your business is going to go perfectly; occasionally, you may see a spill, leak, or accident that affects the environment in some harmful way. Though your first line of efforts should be directed toward mitigating the damage and controlling the situation, your next step should be performing a root cause analysis, which as explained by Pinnacle Art, will help you identify the point at which the failure occurred. Then, you’ll be able to make corrections, replace faulty machinery, or address problems with individuals to prevent the incident from repeating itself.
2. Technological research. Technology is always evolving, and your business needs to stay on top of the latest developments if you’re going to maximize your energy efficiency. On a small scale, this could mean upgrading your light bulbs and heating and cooling equipment to the latest models. On a larger scale, it could mean investing in new, energy-efficient production equipment, or new software that can help you track and manage your environmental impact, possibly even through automation.
3. Recycling optimization. Recycling is one of the best ways to reduce your environmental impact. For starters, recycling reduces the amount of waste that ends up in landfills, curbing the potential long-term impact we’re having on our ecosystems. It also prevents the need to produce new materials for future applications, overall reducing the amount of energy spent as well, as the natural resources we’re depleting. Best of all, recycling doesn’t take much additional effort; all you have to do is identify the materials to be recycled and separate them out from your standard waste.
4. Energy control. One of the best ways to reduce your total environmental impact is to reduce the amount of energy your business uses on a regular basis. This comes in a variety of forms, and there’s no one right or wrong way to do it. If you want to go basic with it, you can simply do a better job of turning out the lights at the end of the day and controlling the interior temperature of the office. On a broader scale, you can invest in more energy-efficient structures, from the equipment you use to the insulation of your building.
5. Employee awareness. You can also take a significant step forward by initiating an employee awareness program, helping your workers become more aware of the environmental impact of their actions, from how much energy they use to how their waste disposal affects the environment. Your policies may set a good standard, but remember your employees will be the ones executing them. Make sure they’re on board with your program.
One Step at a Time
Reducing your business’s environmental impact doesn’t need to be extensive, expensive, or intensive; you can make a meaningful difference in the world with every small step forward you take. Start with some basic programs, like opting to recycle the bulk of your ordinary materials, and gradually scale your efforts from there. Not only will your business have a better impact on the environment, but you’ll also set a better standard for the businesses in your area—and you’ll better appeal to your customers, too.
How the Auto Industry is Lowering Emissions
Currently, the automotive industry is undergoing an enormous change in a bid to lower carbon emissions. This has been pushed by the Government and their clean air plans, where they have outlined a plan to ban the sale of petrol and diesel cars by 2040.
Public Health Crisis
It is said that the levels of air pollution lead to 40,000 early deaths in the UK, with London being somewhere that is particularly bad. This has led to the new T-Charge, where heavy polluting cars will pay a new charge on top of the existing congestion charge. Other cities have taken action too, with Oxford recently announcing that they will be banning petrol and diesel cars from the city centre by 2020.
It is clear that the Government is taking action, but what about the auto industry? With the sale of petrol and diesel plummeting and a sharp rise in alternatively fuelled vehicles, it is clear that the industry is taking note and switching focus to green cars. There are now all kinds of fantastic eco-friendly cars available and a type to suit every motorist whether it is a small city car or an SUV.
Of course, it is the cars that are currently on the road that are causing the problem. The used car market is enormous and filled with polluting automobiles, but there are steps that you can take to avoid dangerous automobiles. It is now more important than ever to get vehicle checks carried out through HPI, as these can reveal important information about the automobile’s past and they find that 1 in 3 cars has a hidden secret of some kind. Additionally, they can now perform recall checks to see if the manufacturer has recalled that particular automobile. This allows people to shop confidently and find vehicles that are not doing as much damage to the environment as others.
With the rise in sales of alternatively fuelled vehicles, it is now becoming increasingly more common to see them on UK roads. Public perception has changed drastically in the last few years and this is because of the air pollution crisis, as well as the fact that there are now so many different reasons to switch to electric cars, such as Government grants and no road tax. A similar change in public opinion has happened in the United States, with electric car sales up by 47% in 2017.
The US is leading the way for lowering emissions as they have declined by 758 million metric tons since 2005, which is the largest amount by far with the UK in second with a decline of 170 million metric tons. Whilst it is clear that these two nations are doing a good job, there is still a lot of work that needs to be done in order to improve the air quality and stop so many premature deaths as a result of pollution.
With the Government’s plans, incentives to make the change and a change in public perception, it seems that the electric car revolution is fully underway.
Consumers Investing in Eco-Friendly Cars with the UK Green Revolution
The UK public appears to be embracing the electric car UK Green Revolution, as recent statistics reveal that more and more consumers are making the switch from petrol and diesel to electric or alternatively fuelled vehicles. The demand for diesel fell by almost a third in October compared to last year, whilst hybrid and electric cars rose by a staggering 36.9%.
Time for UK Green Revolution Change
So, what is the reason for this sudden change? This comes down to the current situation in the UK, which has led to people embracing eco-friendly technologies and automobiles. One of the main reasons is the Government’s clean air plans, which includes the impending 2040 ban on petrol and diesel automobiles. There is then the rollout of the T-Charge in London, the city of Oxford announcing that they will be banning petrol and diesel from the city centre by 2020 and various other big announcements which take up a lot of space and time in the UK press.
In addition to this, the negative publicity against diesel has had a huge impact on the UK public. This has led to a lot of confusion over emissions, but actually, the newest low emission diesel automobiles will not face restrictions and are not as bad to drive as many believe. Most notably, German brand Volkswagen has been affected due to the emissions scandal in recent times. It was discovered that some emissions controls for VW’s turbocharged direct injection diesel engines were only activated during laboratory testing, so these automobiles were emitting 40 times more NO in real-world driving. As a result of this and all the negative publicity, the manufacturer has made adaptations and amended their vehicles in Europe. Additionally, they have made movements to improve the emissions from their cars, meaning that they are now one of the cleaner manufacturers. Their impressive range includes the Polo, Golf and Up, all of which can be found for affordable prices from places like Unbeatable Car.
The Current Market
The confusion over the Government’s current stance on diesel has clearly had a huge impact on the public. So much so that the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) has called on the Government to use the Autumn Budget to restore stability in the market and encourage the public to invest in the latest low emission automobiles. SMMT believes that this is the fastest and most effective way to address the serious air quality concerns in this country.
One way that the Government has encouraged the public to make the switch is by making incentives. Motorists can benefit from a grant when they purchase a new plug-in vehicle, plus there are benefits like no road tax for electric vehicles and no congestion charge. When these are combined with the low running costs, it makes owning an electric automobile an appealing prospect and especially because there are so many great models available and a type to suit every motorist. One of the main reasons holding motorists back is the perceived lack of charging points. However, there are currently over 13,000 up and down the country with this number rapidly increasing each month. It is thought that the amount of charging points will outnumber petrol stations by 2020, so it is easy to see more and more motorists start to invest in electric cars way ahead of the 2040 ban.
It is an interesting time in the UK as people are now embracing the electric car revolution. The Government’s clean air plans seem to have accelerated this revolution, plus the poor publicity that diesel has received has only strengthened the case for making the switch sooner rather than later.