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Sustainability practices for small businesses

Sometimes it is the simplest of acts that collectively make the biggest of impacts. This rings true when creating small, yet doable sustainable practices in your small business.

And don’t get me wrong, small businesses, like FieldTech Solutions, need to turn over a profit, that is what we are all trying to achieve, but tweaking your daily habits to sustainable practices, however minute, does not have to create a giant hole in your bottom line and most importantly, it won’t cost you the earth! Creating and sticking to these easy-to-follow and mindful sustainable practices will make a difference and your contribution in reducing the carbon footprint.

1. Say no to plastic

This isn’t breaking news but often in small businesses, we may revert to bad plastic habits as ‘it is the way we have always done it.’  Take stock of your small business practices and see what you can tweak. Get rid of the last remaining plastic kitchenware in the office and have a look at how you are packaging your warehouse products – believe me, there are better, more sustainable products out there that are price comparable and significantly better for the environment.  Also, consider using reusable items where possible so you are able to wash and reuse them. This is not an archaic practise, just makes good business and sustainable sense.

2. Go solar

Install solar panels or buy green power for your utility set up. There will be an upfront cost initially with solar panels but you will eventually reap the benefits of solar energy in your utility bill savings. There is quite a thrill to go into your office and see the power is coming from the solar panels. 

A greener, cleaner power option is also the way to go. There are countless and affordable green power choices to select from. Going gas-free in your small business is the right step moving forward.

3. Hydrate with reusable water bottles

Encourage staff to use reusable water bottles especially if you set up a filtered water dispensing unit at work. You may even consider supplying the reusable water bottles (with your small business branding!) to promote good hydration intake and start introducing sound sustainable practices by leading with example.

There are some great reusable water bottle options in the market – from stainless steel, which helps keep water cold for a long period of time to borosilicate glass which is durable and has thermal qualities as well.

4. Get the temperature right

Temperature control in your small business is also an important consideration. You need to pay attention to air conditioning and heat settings in the office so you can avoid overuse or wasteful energy. 

If you find that your staff are wearing jumpers and jackets because the air conditioning is on full throttle, revisit the temperature and try and get a consensus of comfort with your team.

5. Using recycled paper in printers and copiers

While we are reducing the need to print out copies of documents and keeping most items in soft copy, consider any printing to be done on recycled paper.  There are lots of recycling paper options on the market, rather than grabbing the ream of paper which is not made from recycled paper. Fewer trees being cut down makes for a better outcome.

While you may think that these small acts may not make much of a difference to the environment from your small business.  Think of it this way.  If one-third or one-half of Australian small businesses decided to say no plastic in their processes or all went solar, can you imagine the magnitude of the impact?