The hashtag #OneStepGreener which was used for the 2021 UN Climate Change Conference, COP 26 is one that should go beyond a hashtag and become a way of life. The campaign was centered around encouraging people to take steps to positively impact the environment and live a sustainable life to affect climate change. Many believe that attaining the goal of reaching net zero emissions and limiting global warming rises to 1.5 degrees is not only far-fetched but the sole responsibility of world leaders.
Individuals and businesses have a role to play in attaining this goal. One might question how their little act in their office or home has an impact on the environment and climate. The saying little drops of water make the mighty ocean only goes to buttress this point that small things are significant. Climate Action, SDG 13, which focuses on taking action to combat climate change and its impact reiterates the fact that collective participation is necessary for the achievement of the goal.
Your business, whether small or large, can join the race to net zero when you first integrate climate into your business strategy. This may require that certain adjustments be made to your company’s mission, vision, practices such as adopting renewable energy solutions. In doing this, it places the business on the sustainable path and allows employees and other stakeholders to get on board with the vision and translate words into actions. Organisations can also encourage remote work and reduce travel time. A reduction in travel time positively affects the environment and reduces emission from cars and aircraft. Companies should encourage ride shares or opt for an even better way of climate change by investing in technology.
Video conferencing technology and other forms of advanced technology have now made it possible to connect with others around the world. Investing in technology and conducting business virtually is a great way to cut back on emissions and reduce the number of cars on the road. Bewsys is a good example of a business that has shifted to remote work to join the race to net zero and is still thriving. The culture of remote working which was quickly adopted due to COVID-19 pandemic has shown that travel can be reduced hence, if you can avoid it, then do.
Every business has a voice in the space it finds itself in, some larger than others. No matter your sphere of influence or network, businesses can support climate action by checking their supply chain. Get to know who your suppliers are and if they are environmentally conscious and impacting climate change in any way. Make sure their values align with that of your business. If they do not, consider working with others who are on the path to taking actions to combat climate change. After all, team work makes the dream work.
Individuals can make changes to their lifestyle to impact the environment. Consider leaving the car at home and walking, cycling, carpooling or making use of public transport. Checking your diet and reducing consumption of meat and dairy also has a long term effect on climate change. Recycle waste in your home and avoid wasting food when you can.
As the Chinese proverb goes: “A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” Take a step in the right direction today and join the Race to Net Zero. It’s a lot greener on this side.