Why Businesses Need to Reduce Their Carbon Output?

According to a recent Nielsen study, 81 percent of consumers feel strongly that businesses should be taking measures to reduce their impact on the environment. This passion is shared across generations, and it’s safe to say that businesses that have little regard for their corporate social responsibility are significantly less desirable to consumers.

Despite this, a 2018 survey by Carbon Credentials found that only 10 percent of UK businesses had strategies in place to cut carbon emissions. Of those that did, none had a set science-based target in their carbon reduction plan. We know that climate change will devastate the economy and drastically increase the cost of doing business. That’s not even mentioning how it will impact resource scarcity and the global population as a whole.

At the same time, businesses that take the initiative to reduce their carbon footprint can look forward to many more immediate benefits. Here’s why your business needs to reduce its carbon output and what you can do to highlight climate action in the sustainability reports.

Cost Savings

Naturally, your expenses go down with your resource usage. From using more efficient equipment to streamlining your transportation operations to recycling office supplies, there are countless measures every business can take to make this happen. Within the first month, you’ll have more money to allocate towards growth – instead of utility bills.

Regulatory and Tax Compliance

Year-on-year, laws are passed to penalise businesses that don’t make an effort to reduce their impact on the environment and reward those that do. In the UK, this includes the Climate Change Levy, the EU Emissions Trading System and capital allowances on energy-efficient equipment, among other schemes.

Public Image

A 2015 Nielsen study of 30,000 consumers found that 66 percent of them would pay more for sustainably manufactured products. Among millennials, that portion increases to 77 percent. Gen Z is known to be even more conscious in this regard. The more your business cares, the more your customers will care about your business.

Employee Morale

In a similar light, going green fosters positive feelings from your employees as well. This has many benefits. For one, your staff will be more productive and motivated to achieve if they know they’re working for a good cause. Additionally, turnover will be reduced as employees will be less compelled to leave a work community that cares.

The Bigger Picture

This should go without saying, but reducing your company’s environmental impact has lasting benefits for your community and the economy as a whole. The likelihood of your long-term success and prosperity is far greater if the environment is in better shape.

What You Can Do

The list of measures your business can take to become more environmentally conscious is quite frankly endless. Get started by taking a look at this post on Utility Bidder, an energy supplier comparison website, about some simple ways that businesses can reduce their carbon output. The internet serves as a wealth of information on this topic.

Implementing greener practises is extremely beneficial to your business and more often than not, it is a dead-simple process. Getting started today will help you reap the benefits and reach your business goals sooner.

5 Ways Businesses Can Protect The Environment

Over the years, humans have begun to see the negative impact a lot of our behaviors have had on the earth. Whether it is our use of energy, our contribution to growing landfills or a variety of other things, many people are making changes. More and more individuals are looking for ways to reduce their carbon footprint and lead environmentally friendly lives.

While individuals are increasingly doing their part to help the environment, businesses also need to do the same. They are often some of the biggest contributors of the environmental damage being done, and need to find ways to turn it around. With that in mind, this article is going to go over a few ways that businesses can help protect the environment.

1. Adopt More Efficient Processes and Machinery

Many processes and machines that businesses will use end up using a lot more energy or power than they need. Protecting the environment can often be as simple as replacing or changing these processes and machinery to efficient options that exist today.

ecofriendly-manufacturing

For example, a fax machine, which is still used at many companies, can use a lot of energy to work all day. They can generally waste a lot of paper too. Instead, consider using a service like eFax. They allow you to send and receive faxes quickly, all online without the need for a machine. This is only one of several examples of how old, outdated and inefficient processes and technology can be replaced.

2. Reduce Paper Waste

Many businesses create a lot of waste. While this type of waste can depend on your company and industry, it is often things like paper and garbage. In fact, around 26% of the total waste in landfills is paper waste. This isn’t all from companies, but they generally create much more paper waste than residential households will.

While many companies have gone completely paperless, others still have a lot of work to do in that department. Some of the best ways to reduce paper waste are to store files online, use electronic documents and print things less often.

In addition to less waste, these online solutions are generally easier and preferred for both employees and customers. Of course, any paper you do still need to use, make sure it gets recycled and isn’t simply tossed in with the rest of the garbage.

3. Use Efficient Light Bulbs

Keeping your office buildings well-lit is an important part of ensuring your employees can comfortably see and do their job. However, with potentially hundreds of light bulbs on for the better part of most days, these lights can use a ton of energy. Instead of using traditional bulbs, consider using energy-efficient LEDs.

LED-lighting-workplace

In addition to saving energy, these bulbs can save money as they take less energy to use. Most will also last significantly longer, and aren’t that much more expensive to buy. This is a quick change that can have a significant impact on how much energy is used and/or wasted at your business.

4. Allow Telecommuting and Remote Work

While the prevalence of remote work has been growing recently, there are still some companies who don’t allow it. By simply allowing people to work remotely permanently, or from time to time, companies can improve their eco-friendliness. The amount of energy used in your office should drop significantly with less people there.

Also, with less people driving to work, your company will lower the emissions it is responsible for creating, even if only by a little bit. In addition to saving the environment, having more employees work remotely will save on energy costs. You could even potentially downsize to a smaller and more affordable office.

5. Clean Up Any Mess You Make

Using hazardous materials or chemicals is sometimes required at many companies for a variety of things. Ensuring you proper waste disposal is of the utmost importance. As a result, be sure to work with a reputable clean-up service who works in an environmentally friendly manner.

recycling-in-offices

If this mess is cleaned up incorrectly, your company could be doing a ton of damage to the environment near your offices, plants or factories. Not only that, but you could find yourself in serious troubles with the government if you don’t do things according to the regulations in your area.

Bottom Line

These are 5 of the many different ways that businesses can help do their part to protect the environment. Many of these methods can also help the business by saving you money or providing an increase to efficiency or productivity. You can also make use of green marketing strategies for green branding of your business.

Proactive Prevention of Common Hazardous Waste Violations

In 2019, the EPA levied fines totaling  $170,000 against three Southern California-based companies, namely, Coat Product, Inc., International Aerospace Coatings, Inc., and Goodwest Rubber Linings, Inc. These companies allegedly violated the federal Resource Conservation Recovery Act (RCRA) that oversees the proper management of hazardous waste.

Hazardous waste regulations compliance is complex, and businesses of all sizes find them significantly stringent to follow and comply with. If found guilty, the organizations are liable to pay huge fines that can financially wipe out small and mid-size organizations. This article can help businesses stay proactive about preventing hazardous waste violations.

hazardous-waste-violations

Types of Hazardous Waste

Hazardous waste is any solid waste that is listed as a known hazardous waste or exhibits any characteristic among ignitability, corrosivity, reactivity, or toxicity. A known hazardous waste is categorized into four lists named F, K, P, and U lists.

 The hazardous waste regulations differ based on the quantity of waste generated by your business.

  • Large Quantity Generators – Businesses that monthly generate more than 1000 kg of hazardous waste or more than 100 kg of acute spill residue or soil, or more than 1 kg of acute hazardous waste.
  • Small Quantity Generators – Businesses that monthly generate hazardous waste between 100 kg and 1000 kg.
  • Very Small Quantity Generators – Businesses that monthly generate up to 100 kg of hazardous waste, or up to 100 kg of acute spill residue or soil, or up to 1 kg of acute hazardous waste.

After knowing your class of hazardous waste generators, let’s understand some of the common hazardous waste violations.

Common Hazardous Waste Violations

1. Lack of Proper Labelling

Proper labeling is critical for notifying government waste haulers, safety personnel, and your employees regarding the accumulated chemical, specifically in the event of an emergency and how long it has been accumulating onsite.

2. Improper Disposal

Businesses dispose of hazardous waste by illegally dumping it due to various reasons, including lack of time and efforts, avoid disposal fees, lack of knowledge about what constitutes hazardous waste, or understaffed or untrained workforce with lack of waste management procedures knowledge.

3. Improper or No Determination of the Waste

Many times, the generators fail to properly determine the waste by testing it or knowing its stream that can attract hefty fines.

4. Improper Management of Expired Waste

Expired chemicals can be extremely volatile and considered hazardous waste. These materials can be dangerous as they are no longer in their original containers and can become less stable or have decomposed due to aging. They are subject to hazardous waste generator requirements as well as the regulatory timeframes in which they can be disposed of or stored.

5. No or Inadequate Waste Manifests

Adequate paperwork is also critical when it comes to hazardous waste. After storing and labeling hazardous waste, you, as a generator, are mandated to complete the Hazardous Waste Manifest that outlines the type and quality of waste. Further, you need to mail its copy to the appropriate regulatory agencies such as EPA and DOT (Department of Transportation).

6. No or Inadequate Training for Employees

Inadequate employee training can lead to improper hazardous waste handling procedures that might result in treacherous spills, toxic chemical reactions, and spreading fire. Also, failing to wear protective gear can expose your employees to radioactive materials, fumes, and other hidden risks that can cost their lives. Not following proper updated standards for employee communication and training can result in hefty fines.

7. Lack of Contingency Plan

A generator should have a written Hazardous Waste Contingency Plan that can be implemented immediately during an emergency, including explosions, fires, and sudden unplanned release of hazardous waste. It’s designed to minimize hazards to the environment and human health during emergencies. Failing to have a contingency plan can result in significant fines.

hazardous-waste

8. Improper Management of Mercury

Mercury and its products are incredibly toxic and can cause chronic and acute poisoning and severe illness if mishandled. Improper management of mercury attracts hefty fines as it can lead to spills and evaporation, risking human lives and the environment.

9. Open Containers

Not closing the containers containing hazardous waste is among the common violations and can be a cause of accidents and physical injuries that can be avoided with a few precautions.

10. No or Infrequent Weekly Inspections

All hazardous waste generators are compelled to perform a weekly inspection of their hazardous waste container storage areas. It’s also a common violation that can be easily avoided by the implementation of standard procedures and compliance maintenance.

How to Prevent Hazardous Waste Violations

Hazardous waste violations and the associated hefty fines can be avoided by implementing standard procedures and giving due diligence during generating, storing, transporting, and disposing of hazardous waste.

  • Follow rigorous labeling of containers with hazardous waste including name and address of your facility, accumulation start date, source or identity of waste, characteristic of waste, mentioning what makes it hazardous, and physical state of the waste.
  • Keep in mind proper licensing and know your waste generator requirements.
  • Understand the “cradle to grave” requirements by RCRA.
  • Comply with hazardous waste management training requirements by providing on-the-job as well as classroom training to your employees on hazardous waste management, storage, and disposal procedures.
  • Contract with a reputed and properly licensed hazardous waste company that will provide proof of proper disposal along with adequate documentation. Closed top mini frac tanks can be ideal for hazardous waste disposal as they ensure safe transportation of chemicals and other volatile substances.
  • Properly determine your waste streams with the Hazardous Waste Identification process.
    • Check if it is solid waste.
    • Check if it’s particularly excluded from RCRA.
    • Check if it’s listed as hazardous waste.
    • Check if it exhibits hazardous waste characteristics.
  • Conduct regular audits. Keep track of expired chemicals to dispose of them properly. Have a centralized purchasing and inventory process for effective organization and inventory management of chemicals.
  • Fill out and double-check the Uniform Hazardous Waste Manifest correctly.
  • Create an adequate contingency plan based on your company’s waste generator status. The plan should include contact information of emergency coordinator, emergency equipment location, emergency phone numbers, and more.
  • Conduct regular audits and weekly inspections of the storage area and containers and keep them closed at all times. Maintain a log record. Ensure that the storage area is free from debris and other materials, container tops are free from spillage, containers are in good condition and free from spills and leaks, and the ground is clean and dry. Make sure that the waste is stored in compatible containers.

Stay in the Know About EPA Regulations

Besides knowing the common hazardous waste violations and how to avoid them, here are some of the critical EPA laws and regulations you should know if you are dealing with hazardous waste.

  • Resource Conservation Recovery Act (RCRA) – The act is aimed to protect human health and the environment from waste disposal hazards.
  • Clean Air Act (CAA) – Its goal is to enhance and protect the country’s air quality.
  • Clean Water Act (CWA) – It intends to prevent, reduce, and eliminate pollution in groundwater and navigable waters.
  • Toxic Substance Control Act (TCSA) – It aims to protect human health and the environment from potentially hazardous chemicals by restricting their manufacture, processing, and use.

Hazardous waste violations are taken extremely seriously, and the associated fines can spell financial doom for small and mid-sized companies. However, well-thought procedures, a disciplined, proactive approach, and routine inspections can help you stay compliant.

7 Benefits of Hiring a Commercial Cleaning Service

Many business owners shy away from hiring commercial cleaners, as they have concerns about the costs. A small business may not want to invest a significant portion of its budget into keeping its establishment clean.

The mistake that businesses make is to assume that paying for commercial cleaning services is a net loss. Between proven cleaning methods and attention to detail, there are many advantages to hiring professionals for cleaning.

Below are seven reasons why you must hire commercial cleaners for your business.

Benefits of Hiring a Commercial Cleaning Service

1. Maintain a Sleek Aesthetic

Businesses that prioritize cleanliness have a much easier time maintaining a sleek and modern aesthetic. If you are running a business that aims to target Millennials and Generation Z customers, crafting a sleek and stylish aesthetic is so important.

Such aesthetics are very difficult to maintain if your workspace is untidy, dirty, and unhygienic. Rather than appearing modern and sleek, your business may look chaotic and claustrophobic. While such appearances may have been acceptable in the past, modern customers may not find them particularly appealing.

2. Impress Customers and Clients

When you are running a business that depends on daily interactions with customers or clients, you must prioritize cleanliness. If someone walks into your store, restaurant, or office first thing in the morning, they should see a spotless environment.

Perhaps a customer is unsure of where they want to shop, and they take an interest in your store. They walk inside and immediately notice areas of the floor that have a great deal of dust and debris. Such an appearance does not create a positive impression, and may even cause them to turn around and look for a different place to shop.

3. Avoid Liabilities and Risks

Commercial cleaners are very thorough in their work, while they also keep up to date on the latest OSHA compliance and state health standards. Your business does not have to concern itself with cleaning standards, as your cleaners will take care of that for you.

commercial cleaning services

Many business owners make the mistake of delegating the cleaning of an establishment to specific employees. While those workers may do their best, they are unlikely to know the latest OSHA standards and compliance. That means your business could suffer consequences when your annual health inspection comes around.

4. Retain and Attract Employees

The state of the economy in the United States is extremely precarious in 2021 and beyond. Despite the impressive performance of the stock market and housing market, many businesses are still struggling to reach the same levels of business as pre-2020.

In addition, many workers are not showing a great desire to get back to work. Others are a lot more cautious about committing to a workplace, and will not hesitate to change jobs if they believe a better alternative is available.

Business owners must ensure they can both retain existing employees and attract new workers in such an environment. Maintaining a clean business is one way to project your company in the best possible light.

If a prospective employee comes in for an interview, they are likely to look through the various areas of your business. Should they notice dirty corners in certain rooms, messy communal spaces, and other issues, they are far less likely to take up a job at that establishment.

5. Avoid Business Shutdowns

Companies that are not making cleanliness a priority are taking a significant risk in 2021. There are countless stories of businesses that had to shut down for several days due to a virus outbreak among their staff.

Not only do such outbreaks cause your business to lose money, as you must shut your doors for a few days or weeks, but you may develop a poor reputation among the local community. If people hear that your business shut down due to a virus outbreak, they will be more hesitant to frequent your establishment in the near future.

The cost of hiring cleaners to spend a couple of hours at your business each day of the year is likely to cost less money than a few days of your business being closed down due to health issues among staff. Similar shutdowns are possible if you fail annual health inspections.

6. Lighten the Load on Your Staff

Considering the changes occurring in 2020 and 2021, many businesses are placing greater workloads on their staff. Most workers already have many tasks they must handle each day, which means that adding cleaning into that workload could overwhelm your employees.

Rather than doing a great job cleaning your business premises, those workers may look to cut corners in every area of their job. As they are tasked with so many different responsibilities, they may attempt to do the bare minimum with each task. That could result in your business not receiving the care it deserves.

If you are overworking your employees, their stress and tension may spill over into interactions with customers. That is not how you want your business to appear to a customer, whether they are coming in for the first time or are a regular visitor.

7. Save Money on Cleaning in the Long-Term

Business owners assume that if they are hiring a cleaning company one or two times a week, they are likely to spend a lot of money on cleaning in the long term. In contrast, hiring professionals for a deep cleaning one time a month can save money.

The Future of Cleaning

What many people do not realize is that hiring commercial cleaners for regular cleaning is cost-effective over time. If cleaners are constantly at your business mopping the floors, vacuuming, spot cleaning surfaces, and ensuring your bathrooms are thoroughly disinfected, then you will not require major cleaning at any stage.

Every area of your business receives priority from the cleaners during each of their visits, ensuring the entire business is spotless when they leave. In contrast, a company that only hires professionals one or two times a year may end up with excessively dirty surfaces, floors, and carpeting. Some of the dirt or debris may not come off easily, which can increase the cost of cleaning significantly.

How To Stay Green With Your Office Cleaning

Businesses are incorporating sustainability into their daily practices in an effort to do their part in creating a more eco-friendly future.  If you’re among the businesses that are adopting eco-friendly business practices such as conserving resources and reducing waste, you’re probably always looking for additional ways to go green.

An area that some businesses overlook is their cleaning practices. Many conventional cleaning products contain chemicals that have a negative impact on people, animals, and the environment. Chemicals in cleaning products can cause health problems such as asthma, cancer, and birth defects. After the products are used, they typically get washed down the drain. Water treatment facilities can get rid of some of the contaminants but not all. These contaminants then get washed into our rivers and lakes, where it can have a negative impact on wildlife.

This is why more and more businesses are incorporating green cleaning into their business practices. If you’re looking for additional ways to stay green, it’s time to look at your cleaning practices.

What is green cleaning?

Green cleaning is when you use cleaning methods and procedures that are designed to preserve human health and the environment. Typically, this means using products that contain environmentally friendly ingredients. Most green products are also manufactured in an environmentally friendly way and are biodegradable.

office-cleaning

Most green cleaning products contain a label on their packaging that indicates the company has met certain environmental and labor standards. However, it’s important to remember that some companies can get this label just by donating to environmental causes or using recycled packaging while their products still contain harmful chemicals. You should always check to see what ingredients are in the product to ensure that it is environmentally friendly. Avoid products that use phosphates, chlorine, artificial fragrances, and artificial colors.

The right green cleaning products smell more natural and will still clean your business just as well as conventional cleaning supplies.

How do I switch to green products?

If you would like to practice green cleaning, the first thing you’ll need to do is to find out what you’re currently cleaning with. If your business does its own cleaning, go around your business and make a list of all your products. If you’re using a cleaning company, ask them to provide you with a list.

After you have your list of products, go through and see if any of them are green products. You can do this by seeing if any of them have an ecolabel or checking to see if they are EWG verified.  If any of them are, great! You’re already using green products.

If they don’t, you’ll want to see if the vendor you buy your supplies from offers a green product line. If you’re using an outside cleaning company, see if they’re willing to use green products. Most companies will already have alternative products on hand. Some companies, such as Executive Cleaning Services, LLC, will also let you provide your own green cleaning products while still doing the cleaning for you!

Aren’t green products more expensive?

No, not necessarily. Depending on where you buy your products, you can get them for around the same price as conventional products.

There are a number of ways to make green cleaning affordable. If you’re a small business, you can consider making your own cleaners out of natural ingredients. If you purchase your products from a vendor, see if you can buy in bulk or buy concentrated products. You’ll spend more money upfront, but the products will last longer.

You should also eliminate unnecessary products to help reduce costs. There are many all-purpose cleaners out there that can be used on multiple surfaces.

What other ways can I stay green with my cleaning?

Switching to green cleaning products is the best way! If you’re not using green products, then you’re not practicing green cleaning. However, it’s also important that your entire team is on board. If your employees go out and buy conventional cleaning products to clean their own cubicle with, it defeats the purpose of your company using green products. Engage your employees in the process of switching to new supplies so that they have a say.

Some might even start practicing green cleaning at home! If you use a cleaning service, make sure you choose someone who also adopts green cleaning practices. An example of someone who does this is Ideal Cleaning – they only use environmentally cleaning products as they understand how much safer they are to use.

In conclusion

If you’re already practicing sustainable business practices, make sure to add green cleaning to your list of practices. Or, if you’re trying to find ways to start being sustainable, green cleaning is a great first step! It’ll take some time to review your current cleaning products, but once you identify new green cleaning products, you’ll be good to go.

How to Deal with Large and Complex Waste in Your Business

Are you a business owner? Irrespective of the kind of business you’re in, waste management is something that should definitely concern you. Given the amount of waste businesses generate daily, it can become overwhelming to deal with, particularly when it comes to large and complex waste.

While there’s no one-size-fits-all solution to waste management, there are many different ways to go about it: recycling, following waste management protocols, waste prevention, and hiring professional services.

If you’re looking for more ideas on how to deal with large and complex waste in your business, our post has got you covered, so read on!

Deal with Complex Waste in Your Business

The Different Ways of Dealing with Business Waste

Whether you’re in the food, health, pharmaceutical, or any other industry, you’ll find a waste management solution that will click for you.

1. Recycle Your Waste

Spend some time to analyse the waste that your business is generating and identify how much of it can be recycled. This step is an absolute no-brainer, as it has countless benefits for your company. For starters, recycling waste means that you won’t have to spend so much on procuring new resources.

If you have complex waste that you cannot recycle yourself, you can send it to dedicated recycling plants. In fact, sending your business waste to a recycling plant is often a more economical option than disposing of it directly.

With growing awareness about climate change, many businesses are conscious of building a ‘green image’. By recycling your complex business waste, you’re doing your bit for the environment while simultaneously improving the image of your business.

waste management for businesses

2. Reduce Waste Production

We’ve all heard that prevention is better than cure. Look at it this way: If your business generates less waste, dealing with waste becomes a lot easier. So, how can you go about this?

Considering that most businesses are embracing technology, you can start by cutting down on your paper usage. Additionally, if your business makes use of battery-operated equipment, you can swap regular batteries for rechargeable ones. You can also come up with waste reduction plans and strategies.

It’s a good idea to monitor your business waste for a certain period and spot areas that provide a scope for waste reduction. You can also get your employees involved in this process.

3.  Follow Protocols

Depending on the industry you’re in, you may have a set of waste management protocols you are required to follow. For instance, if you’re dealing with pharmaceuticals, there’s a lot of medical waste that needs to be taken care of daily.

expired-medicines-management

Pharmaceutical industry can change its practices to manage pharmaceuticals in a more ecofriendly manner.

You need to follow proper incineration, chemical disinfection, dry thermal treatment, microwave irradiation, land disposal, and inertisation processes. Similarly, every industry has a set of protocols to follow.

While the process is bound to be time-consuming, it will help get your large and complex waste sorted once and for all. Improper waste management can create problems for your business in the long run, so it would be best to avoid such a situation.

4. Help Others to Help You

It may be that some of the waste your business generates, like leftover food, materials, and other products, can be donated to vulnerable communities. You can also consider linking up with charities or NGOs to make this a regular practice. Not only are your business waste management worries taken care of, but you’ll also be making a contribution to society.

5. Tackle the Big Packaging Problem

Packaging can make up a huge proportion of your waste. Every business makes use of packaging in some way or the other. What can you do differently to reduce the packaging you handle?

First, you can adopt a minimalist approach. Don’t use packaging unless a product really needs it. Second, being resourceful can help. For example, it doesn’t make sense to use an entire cardboard crate to pack a product that’s only half the size.

packaging waste

Packaging that adorns your product can have serious environmental impact.

Considering that many packaging materials like bubble wraps are plastic, it’s important not to over-use them. By minimising the materials that go into packaging, you’re directly reducing your business’ packaging-related waste.

6. Get Professional Help

There are many professional companies such as phs Wastekit that offer personalized waste-management solutions to businesses that need them. These expert services can perform a systematic waste audit to help you understand how your business can reduce producing waste.

They typically use top-notch equipment for waste disposal, saving you a lot of money in the process. What’s more, they even put you in touch with recycling services to whom you can entrust all your large and complex recyclable waste.

Summing Up

Dealing with the large and complex waste in your business can be tricky. However, when done the right way, it can make a huge difference to your brand image, boost your revenue and give you time to focus on the things that truly matter.

To top it off, you’ll be eco-friendly all the way through! We hope that our post has inspired you to give your business’ waste management policies another look.

5 Ways on How To Prepare Your Business For Natural Disasters

Natural disasters like tornadoes, hurricanes, typhoons, and floods come with a lot of collateral damage which affects homes and infrastructure. They also affect our businesses, which are sources of livelihood for many.

Imagine building your enterprise from the ground up, only for it to be dissipated in hours or seconds by the freaks of nature! So how can you prepare your business to weather the storm in the face of a sudden natural disaster? Here’s my ‘Hitchhiker’s guide’ to business disaster preparedness.

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1. Safety Protocols

All lives matter, human resource is the backbone of any business. So having Standard Operating-Procedures(S0Ps) for disaster preparedness can mitigate any occupational risks during such times.

Simulating disaster drills can also go a long way in disaster preparedness if employees know emergency exits and evacuation protocols. Keeping a well-equipped disaster kit is commended too, and it should come complete with survival supplies for at least 3 days.

2. Data Backup

Yes backups are quite the norm now. But having a ‘backup’ of your backup is advisable. Having an extra digital location where your most sensitive documents, emails as well as digital records and databases are stored.

This can allow you to switch to a ‘virtual business’ till the dust settles and enable you to work and deliver remotely. It gives your business a much needed lifeline as virtual records can help in the rebuilding process a lot. Be sure that your backups are done frequently and can be automated.

3. Insurance Cover

Get yourself flood insurance if your geographic code is prone to weather disasters. The average flood insurance policy costs about $800 and most Insurance companies now offer business interruption policies, property as well as disaster packages at good premiums.

Statistics show that 2 in 5 businesses open after natural disaster. So, to help alleviate the hustles of reopening, insurance could come in handy. I’d advise you take time to meet your insurance agent to ponder over business insurance covers.

4. Infrastructure Precautions

Considering the barrage of destruction Hurricane Harvey brought on the Texas Gulf-Coast causing property damage of up to $80bn, certain measures and precautions can’t be ignored. This is especially so when it comes to the resilience and structural safety of your work premise. Be sure to do a structural audit on your location and assess any possibilities of vulnerability.

Do take time to verify that your business location meets specified building codes. Also surely endeavor to test and service the premise emergency generator under load. If weather disaster strikes, do make an effort to use protective material such as plywood to seal off windows. You can also secure first floor doorways with sandbags while relocating your most sensitive office equipment to innermost portions of the building.

5. Emergency Savings

An Indian friend told me once “In India we save for a rainy day, because it basically rains every day”. That could explain why many Asians are good at saving because they understand that nature can’t be negotiated with.

As a rule of thumb, it’s advisable for businesses to save 20% of their profit per month into an ‘Emergency Trust’. On top of the insurance monies or low interest loans from the Office of Disaster-Assistance, this money can reduce the burden of loss of assets on your business.

We saw the adverse effects of Hurricane Katrina on employment and the New Orleans economy, they can still be felt 13 years later. Bad news never has good timing and at times one can never be too prepared. However, if you take the above precautions chances of salvaging your business are way better.

Why You Should Be Investing in Solar Panels?

The future is green, and it’s more important to get on board with it than ever before. The past year has seen countless climate change related natural disasters, from the recent devastating mega-fires in California to frequent hurricanes sweeping the US and the Caribbean.

Solar panels are becoming much more accessible, for homeowners and for businesses. Traditional roof-rack solar panels can now be installed for as little as around $3,000, and are practically a no-brainer due to the energy savings you’ll make over time (you could even totally eliminate your electricity bill). Not to mention that you’ll be doing your part to help the environment in our planet’s time of need.

solar-energy-trends

Solar panels are becoming more accessible, for homeowners and businesses

If you’ve always found chunky solar panels ugly and off-putting, business magnate Elon Musk has a solution. His electric car and solar panel company Tesla has recently unveiled invisible solar roof tiles. The tiles look exactly like normal roof slates, but capture the sun’s energy without drawing attention. These tiles are paving the way to normalizing sustainable, beautiful eco-homes.

To further convince you about seriously considering installing solar panels for your home, check out our list of top reasons why solar panels will benefit your household or business.

Slash Your Energy Bills

After the initial investment of purchasing the panels and installation, the energy produced is all yours. Even if you consume more energy than your panels can produce, you’ll make drastic savings on what you are currently paying by purchasing all your electricity from the grid.

You’ll make even more amazing savings if you live in a sunny state or country – prices in Brisbane, Australia, are particularly low to purchase and install solar panels. And as the city enjoys on average 261 days of sun per year, panels there will produce more than enough energy to power homes all year round.

Energy costs are only set to rise and rise – meaning that by investing in solar panels now, you’ll never feel the strain of your electricity bills going up again. This is an especially smart idea for business owners with fluctuating income, as you can more easily predict your cashflow with fixed energy prices.

Increase the Value of Your Home

If you are open to the possibility of moving to a new house in the future, you will be able to sell your current property at an increased value by equipping it with solar panels. It’s an attractive prospect for buyers if a potential home comes with very small or no electricity bills, so you’ll be making a huge return on your investment in this way, too.

solar-battery

Note: Be wary of ‘renting your roof’ to solar panel companies if you can’t afford to purchase the panels outright. You may want to ‘go green’ in any way you can, but buying panels is by far the most practical way to enjoy the benefits. The lengthy leases that come with rental panel contracts (often 25 years) have been seen to put off mortgage lenders.

It’s highly recommended that if you want to benefit from free electricity and help the environment with solar, you should save up first to increase the value of your property – not render it unsellable.

Reduce Your Carbon Footprint

As we said, it’s never been so important to do your bit to save our eco-system. The polar ice caps are melting faster than has ever been recorded, and the earth is suffering terrible effects. As well as hurricanes and fires, we’ve also experienced floods, earthquakes and landslides all over the world this year.

In the large scheme of things, installing solar panels doesn’t seem like it will help much, but if everyone did their part to be more eco-conscious, we could significantly reduce the strain of destructive fossil fuels on the environment. By equipping your property with solar panels, you will save money while making steps to saving the environment – a tough offer to turn down!

Utilizing green energy within your business has even better rewards. Marketing your business as eco-conscious and sustainable is a great way to attract customers and impress existing ones. In recent years, studies into consumer activity have found that sustainability is a big shopping priority, especially among the millennial generation. Corporate solar panels will increase your revenue by expanding your customer base AND saving your business’s energy bills.

So – what are you waiting for? Contact a solar energy company today, who will be more than happy to assist you on your green energy journey.

Renewable Energy in Australia: Potential and Progress

Recently there has been a lot of talk in how a country can improve their ecological footstep. One way of doing so is definitely changing the way the respective country produces its energy. Australia has recently been headlining the news in regard to the renewable energy situation. Australia’s energy production is looking towards a new future with a specific aim on solar and wind power.

If Australia plans on keeping its water resource at a steady level, it has got to go from its use of coal to renewable sources. Thanks to its abundance in both solar and wind energy, Australia has quite the advantage when it comes to green energy production possibilities.

Unfortunately though due to their geographic position, the water supply is limited for the country. So much so, that the coal industry was taking a toll on the water supply due to the large quantities of water needed when producing energy from coal. As a result, moving over to wind and solar energy fueled productions is a viable option seeing how both respective energy productions do not require water.

The news that Australia was listed as a “water-stressed company” was released by the World Resource Institute; a non-profit organization based in Washington D.C. Moreover, on this past May 13th The Sydney Morning Herald also wrote that 73% of Australia’s electricity needs were met by the use of coal. In respect to these findings and Australia’s continuous growth, it is imperative that new resources are used for energy production.

Australia has been making headlines in renewable energy sector.

Fortunately, Australia’s geography is a big resource as well when it comes to studying the possibilities of implementing the new energy production. It was in fact calculated that the dimensions of the solar power farm needed to meet the country’s demands would result in occupying only 0.1% of Australia’s total land mass; I think we can all agree on the fact that that land could be spared for a solar farm.

And on that note, the government is taking the matter seriously, and has called upon everybody to try and better the situation. The incentives call upon small businesses and households as well by reminding them that there are the possibilities of installing their own solar panels, heat pumps, solar water heaters, and more.

Thanks to the various incentives, the Green Energy Council has stated that there is a lot of activity in the sector, including at least 58 different projects focused on implementing the renewable energy sources. As a consequence of these projects, the council has also stated that there would be an income of $10 billion in investments, 6,141 new jobs, and 5,482 megawatts of renewable energy capacity. Definitely great numbers to look forward to!

How to Manage Your Business Maintenance Waste

Just 6% of businesses consider their maintenance department to be well established, showing just how little attention companies are paying to this area. No employee likes trash piling up in the bins around the office. The only solution to this problem is to help arrange a Roll Off Dumpster Berks County that can be placed under the company building and emptied on specific days of the week. This can get your business to be more organized just by making waste removal services more accessible.

As a result, wastage is often high, which eats into profit margins. When an office is refurbished, there will inevitably be some waste created, which the company must pay for. In order to mitigate the damage, business managers should put more attention into their maintenance strategy, acting preventatively rather than reactively. This way, business maintenance waste will be limited. The resulting maintenance waste can then be converted into energy, thus becoming a money maker rather than a drain on resources.

Benefits of Sustainability for Business

Sustainability is really a no-brainer from a business perspective, yet many companies are failing to hit a sustainable level of waste management. US consumers are beginning to care more about a business’s environmental impact over the price of their products, with 67% supporting an end to single-use plastic straws. Not only will restructuring your waste strategy save you money on cleanup, but it will improve the image of your company. In these eco-conscious times, this is essential.

Furthermore, a recent poll by Michigan State University found that 88% of Americans take steps to reduce their food wastage. This shows how high a priority this is for the average customer. If you can target more resources towards sustainable waste management, then you are bound to see increased profits in other areas.

Scheduling and Planning

Cutting waste is all about taking preventative actions rather than reacting to circumstances as they arise. By planning your maintenance ahead of time, it is possible to identify areas where wastage will occur and take steps to avoid this. Work with the most experienced maintenance waste managers for the best results. You are probably already a top planner when it comes to marketing and sales, but are you using these skills when maintenance work needs carrying out?

Before any big construction or renovation project, have an expert identify the quantity of waste that will be produced. You will then be able to schedule in workers to come and remove it immediately, increasing efficiency and lowering costs. It is then up to you to dispose of this waste in a way which is responsible.

Profit From Your Waste

The average business uses between 15,000 and 25,000 kWh per year. This energy has to come from somewhere. Given the amount of waste produced by a typical company, why not put this back into your operation by converting it to energy or transforming it into useful products? This is a win-win situation. You get to carry out the necessary maintenance to keep your business running, while receiving free energy to power your company and promoting an eco-friendly brand image.

Maintenance is an important part of every business, but many managers neglect the cost of waste. Staying on top of your business maintenance waste is guaranteed to cut costs and boost profits. Have a waste management schedule in place and use the trash to provide a sustainable energy source as well as useful products.