KIM TAKES THE GREEN LINE
EACH year the UK produces approximately three million tonnes of extra waste during the Christmas period alone.
Most of this can be reduced and recycled and better practices can be rolled out at work as well as at home.
The new year is a great time to focus on the environment and reduce your carbon footprint at work and at home. It’s also easier than you might think. Now is definitely the time to start planning for a more sustainable business in 2012.
Many organisations in Peterborough are already taking steps to reduce their carbon footprint.
Here are some simple steps you can take which will make a real impact on the environment and your bottom line.
Follow these top tips for greening your business in the new year:
Make your new year’s resolution to live a more sustainable 2012: Ask staff to make some green pledges and put them on your noticeboards for all to see.
Keep the temperature at 19C and wear an extra jumper if you get a bit chilly instead of cranking up the heating: Unless it’s just too cold for comfort, try to keep your thermostat at that temperature. Your heating costs will go up by eight per cent each time you increase the temperature by just one degree.
A 2C increase in office temperature creates enough CO2 in a year to fill a hot-air balloon.
Switch off the lights when you leave the building: Office lights left on overnight use enough energy in a year to heat a home for almost five months.
Turn off your computers when you leave the office: Leaving a computer on overnight for a year creates enough CO2 to fill a double-decker bus.
Turn off photocopiers, printers and other electrical equipment at the end of the day: A photocopier left on standby overnight wastes enough energy to make 30 cups of tea.
Make a sustainable choice for travelling to work: Try walking, cycling, public transport or car sharing.
Car sharing to work 10 miles away will save you and your colleague £250 a year – more if there’s three of you. Visit www.travelchoice.org.uk to find out about sustainable travel in Peterborough.
Look for the potential in your rubbish: Eastex is the materials exchange scheme for the East of England.
Through the website www.eastex.org.uk users can list materials they would like to re-home, whilst others list items they are looking for.
The scheme is based on the idea that one business’s waste is another’s raw material. If you need to get rid of office furniture, old computers or even a ton of potpourri, Eastex can help.
Since its set up three years ago, Eastex has saved local firms more than £1.5 million in waste disposal and procurement costs and diverted 10,000 tonnes of goods from landfill.
For more hints and tips on how to green your business, contact Investors in the Environment on 01733 866436, or e-mail email@example.com
With Kim Coley, Green Business Officer, Peterborough Environment City Trust