Today any business can become ecologically friendly. And, every small step a business takes furthers their commitment to decrease its carbon emissions’ impact on the environment.

Take for example something as fundamental to any business as office supplies in its everyday operation. Purchasing recycled or sustainably sourced paper reduces landfill use while decreasing carbon emissions. Because recycling means less deforestation and processing to create paper products, the amount of carbon emissions is significantly decreased.

Utilizing energy efficient lights and office equipment (laptops versus desktop computers, LCD monitors versus CRT screens) not only saves businesses in operating costs, but again, also assists in limiting the carbon emissions. Remember, it is not just enough to have these products in place, but also to be mindful of how they are used. By turning off lights, computers, lowering heating settings and raising cooling settings, you can directly impact and reduce the amount of wasted energy and costs. And when it comes time to retire equipment, recycle or utilize a manufacturer’s take-back program, if offered.

If your business conducts meetings with clients on a regular basis, utilizing technology such as web and video conferencing decreases the need and costs involved with travel such as hotels, meals and transportation to and from destinations.

Speaking of an office’s building, building and utilizing lower emission energy systems such as generators powered by natural gas or solar power are ecologically sound. Some companies are even investing in and installing their own renewable energy facilities such as wind, water or cogeneration using agricultural waste created from other businesses to meet energy needs.

Another area businesses can focus is encouraging employees to car pool, utilize public transportation or, if feasible, bicycle to work. In their willingness to partner with their employees for a common goal, some businesses will provide bicycle storage, as well as shower/changing facilities and lockers to provide further incentive for participation.

These are just a few of the many ways a business can decrease carbon emissions and become more eco-friendly. So, which of these is your business currently doing? More importantly, which ones do you want to incorporate?

Written by Benjamin Willis