Climate change is a very real issue, and many businesses find it a challenge to manage day to day business operations while minimising their impact on the environment.

Do you think it’s too hard to be environmentally friendly? Reducing the environmental impact of your business will improve the sustainability of your business, give your business a reason to stand out from its competitors, as well as positive impacts our environment.

We are so passionate about our impact on the environment, we have established an Environmental Policy for EVA. If you’d like to see our commitment, click here.

We have some tips to help you go green below, but first you might like to calculate the carbon footprint of your business. Use this calculator from Carbon Neutral.

Now, the ideas on how to go green, try implementing the following ideas in your business;

1. Partnering with a Virtual Assistant as a great way to make a difference with the planet! A Virtual Assistant works from their own office, immediately saving to not only your operational and equipment costs. When you use electronic communication, such as skype, email and the phone, you effectively reduce the use of paper and consumables.

Here is a list of additional ways EVA HQ operates to minimise its impact on the environment.

2. Working from our home office! No commuting to the office each day.

3. Think before print! We have even added a reminder to the bottom of our emails, prompting others to think before printing also.

4. Use both sides of the paper.

5. Turn scrap paper into note pads.

6. Shred paper into animal bedding or compost.

7. Use cloud based accounting programs for your bookkeeping. We recommend and use Freshbooks to store our business receipts and delivers client invoices electronically.

8. Turn off appliances when not in use, and even removing power cords from the power point to conserve energy.

9. Regular maintenance & servicing of appliances and equipment. Including air conditioner and leaking taps.

10. Install a water tank. We now have 3 tanks catching water for us to use in our garden.

11. Install a solar system to save on electricity use.

12. Empty water bottle or drinking glass into your pot plants or garden, not down the sink.

13. Reduce landfill – recycle all items that can be recycled or re-purposed.

14. Use refillable ink cartridges and toners. We use and recommend Ink on the Run Bendigo.

15. Compost green waste.

16. Purchase recycled items, paper etc. We use Reflex or J.Burrows, who both provide 100% recycled paper.

17. Stop using single use items – take your own coffee cups, refuse straws, and recycle take-away containers.

18. Car pool when attending meetings, conferences or events.

19. Offset carbon emission, we calculate and offset usage from the EVA office and any travel with Carbon Offset Programs.

20. Plant a tree. We have partnered with Carbon Neutral to purchase a tree for all of our clients every year.

21. Support and participate in events such as Clean Up Australia Day and Planet Ark’s Friday Fling

Of course this list is just the tip of the iceberg, you may have other ideas on how your office is making a positive difference to the environment – I’d love to hear how you’re going green!

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By Sam SpenceFounder & Principal Executive Assistant, Executive Virtual Associate.

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