60 Ways Small Businesses Can Make a Big Impact on Earth Day (and Everyday)
It’s time to tap into the power of small business to preserve our planet.
Earth Day is right around the corner and once again, we are faced with the opportunity to make a difference, no matter how big or small. As individuals, there are many ways we can make an impact to preserve our planet and as small businesses, we often wonder if we are doing enough. With our natural resources depleting and the impending loom of climate change, the time to act is now. For a small business, even a minor change can have a huge effect on our environment and ultimately, save your business time and money.
As the owner of a small business, you may feel that your options for participating in Earth Day are limited or that only a few people will not really make a difference but I can assure you that is not the case. There are several ways that small business owners can implement eco-friendly initiatives for Earth Day (and everyday) that can fit into every budget and business model. Not only will conservation initiatives help reduce our footprint, it can help with team building and makes for great marketing material. To give you an idea of just how easy it is to go green, we have compiled a list of 60 ways your small business can make a big difference for our planet, on Earth Day and every day.
Plant a tree.Turn off lights.Use organic paint.Start a recycling program.Switch to paperless contracts.Default to double-sided printing.Purchase energy efficient equipment.Use rechargeable batteries.Get involved in a community garden.Buy green office cleaning products.Install solar panels (and get a tax break!)Switch from desktops to laptops.Collaborate with your team to host a food or clothing drive.Carpool with your coworkers/employees.Utilize hibernate mode for computers.Recycle printer cartridges.Donate old equipment or properly dispose of it.Do a community clean-up event.Allow employees to telecommute more often.Work with suppliers on ordering sustainable products and services.Create a team to lead your company’s conservation efforts.Switch to fair trade coffee and tea in your office.Organize a book drive.Reduce printing emails, memos, powerpoint presentations, etc.Purchase Energy Star products.Select certified green construction companies when remodeling.Attend an Earth Day fair.Update your mailing list to avoid sending out unnecessary correspondence.Utilize “power-saving mode” for printers, copiers and fax machines.Use natural light.Coordinate a 5k for your team that benefits an environmental charity.Go vegan or vegetarian for Earth Week.Replace paper towels with cloth napkins.Host an e-waste collection drive.Ride your bike to work.Use recycled paper.Stock up on reusable pens.Give employees time off to volunteer.Replace plastic or paper coffee cups with reusable mugs.Provide your employees with branded cloth bags to replace plastic grocery bags.Switch to paperless billing with your vendors and clients.Write letters to local politicians about green initiatives.Register your team for a Habitat for Humanity event.Enjoy a team-building activity outdoors.Buy toxin-free chemicals.Switch to energy efficient lightbulbs.Purchase remanufactured equipment and supplies.Use LED lamps.Make a corporate donation to an environmental cause.Organize a team volunteer event to plant fruits and vegetables at a local farm or garden.Replace water bottles with a water cooler.Create an employee-driven environmental challenge for the week.Raise money to give to a local charity.Invest in renewable power for your business.Benchmark your energy consumption levels then analyze improvement opportunities.Join an environmental committee with your local Chamber.Organize a litter clean-up event.Conserve water.Invest in low-energy office appliances.
Like you, many of our intermediaries are former business owners themselves and we understand the importance of taking care of our planet and making changes to help preserve it. Implementing green initiatives within your small business can do wonders for your morale and also set your business apart as a community leader who values environmental impact. Oftentimes, green initiatives also come with tax benefits and savings, which can help justify changes that do come with a cost. But keep in mind that while Earth Day only comes once a year and as a business, we should strive to more for our planet the other 364 days of the year and it all starts with you.