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An Hour A Week Could Save The Planet July 27, 2007

Posted by liverpoolchamber in Business, Environment.

One hour a week – it doesn’t sound like much, but that’s all the time companies in the North West need to start reducing their impact on the environment.

The suggestion comes as business owners from across the region reveal they are struggling to find the time to consider the effect their company is having on the environment.

Yet even a small amount of time is enough for a company to put in place quick and easy-to-implement measures that can help the environment and, most importantly from a commercial perspective save money.

Nick Ward, Envirowise Regional Manager for the North West, makes some suggestions: “There are all kinds of simple improvements that can be made with sixty minutes to invest. For instance, why not quickly check the water pipes at work for leaks and make a phone call to get them repaired? Offices could start a scrap paper pile which staff could use when they need rough paper for note taking, set printers to print double sided, or add a ‘think before you print’ reminder to email sign-offs to discourage needless printing.”

Those companies that feel they can devote more time to resource efficiency measures can set themselves bigger targets. For instance, with a day a week businesses could look into setting up a more structured environmental management system, which would allow them to demonstrate their sustainable credentials to customers and competitors.

Nick continues: “No matter what the time available, the most important thing for any company to ensure is that they have a dedicated member of staff who looks after environmental issues, and our research showed that almost 75% of businesses in the North West do not have one. This could be a senior business manager, but it could very well be a more junior member of staff who has the time allocated to encourage his or her colleagues to help make the changes work.”

Further suggestions for what local companies could do in the time they have available include:

One hour a week available:
Nominate a champion who takes up the environmental challenge and encourages all staff members to make suggestions on what improvements could be made
Contact your suppliers and ask them to look at reducing their transport packaging so you have less to dispose of

One day a month available:
If you are office-based, order a copy of the Envirowise ‘Green Officiency’ toolkit and start to work through its four stages to a more resource efficient workplace
Contact your landlord and ask about water ‘hippos’. Placing these in each toilet cistern saves water with each flush

One day a week available:
Begin a review of suppliers you work with, to ensure they have their own robust environmental policies
Consider whether you are eligible to work towards a formal environmental standard such as the IEMA Acorn Scheme or ISO14001

Envirowise offers a package of free advice to companies across the region, to help them understand resource efficiency and take appropriate action, which can have both environmental and economic benefits. For information on all levels of help visit www.envirowise.gov.uk or call the Envirowise Advice Line on 0800 585 794.


1. Suzanne Tunnington - July 31, 2007

Commercial organisations investing in Approved Rainwater Harvestng Systems will be eligible to an enhanced capital allowance of 100%, making the business of becoming more sustainable even more appealing, enabling companies, to not only get tax relief, but to gain savings on the ever increasing costs associated with mains water supply. This scheme is being run in conjunction with envirowise and the inland revenue in a bid to encourage business to become more sustainable.
£130 million has been set aside in the 2007 budget for this ECA tax relief scheme, so why not take advantage!
Combined Harvesters is a local supplier of approved systems (Wirral Based) http://www.combinedharvesters.co.uk / 0845 838 7542

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