Seen from space, Planet Earth is a beautiful blue orb, a small jewel in a dark, forbidding universe. Back at ground level, it is the source of life’s basics – shelter, food, water and resources. Sadly, the rate at which we are consuming the Earth’s finite resources and impacting the planet means that our current behaviour is unsustainable.
Why Embrace Sustainable Development?
Sustainable development can be defined as development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.
There are several reasons why businesses should be committed to sustainable business practices.
Economic – Investing in low-energy lighting, eco-friendly building design and energy-saving operational practices saves you money. Lots of money. There are plenty of government programs and grants available to assist.
Social – Promoting your sustainability credentials is good for business. Just ask Westpac, BP or the many other multinationals who publish an annual Sustainability Report. Customers are discerning and look for endorsements such as the tourism industry’s ‘Green Star’ ratings or the words ‘line-caught tuna’ on a restaurant menu.
Environmental – You don’t have to save the whole planet, but it’s only fair that you do your bit! ‘Think Global, Act Local’ - switch some or all of your energy to green (renewable) power, commit to a recycling program or switch from an off-shore to a local supplier and support the local economy.
Evaluate your inputs, processes and outputs. Look at options to reduce your carbon footprint. Your energy consumption is a great place to begin, consider switching to low-energy, motion activated lighting, upgrading inefficient air-conditioning units and improving building insulation. But don’t stop there, a thorough audit can reduce energy consumption, and costs, by up to 40%. Embracing sustainable business practices is good for your business and your planet.