An important action for all businesses is to look wider than their current organisation and aim to decarbonise their supply chain. This can be achieved through actions such as supplier incentives, knowledge sharing of the impact of climate change, producing procurement standards relating to greenhouse gas emissions and ranking supplier programmes. If your organisation does not have the skills to implement an effective supply chain decarbonisation strategy, procurement consultancies can provide invaluable support.
Finally, organisations should consider their sphere of influence. Educating employees, suppliers, customers and the wider community will encourage carbon reduction actions and increase a business’ ‘carbon handprint’.
Benefits to the business in focusing on carbon reduction
The benefits to the planet in driving towards Net Zero have already been outlined, but there are substantial benefits that will have a direct impact upon an organisation too. Reputational benefits to brand are significant, as is the ability to attract and retain talent in the organisation. It is widely documented that GenZ in particular, consider the ethics of an organisation when applying for roles. In addition, the act of reviewing processes often leads to improved efficiencies and a knock-on positive impact on the cost base of an organisation, plus diversifying energy provision can help to manage risk.
How can employees play their part in Net Zero?
As we have become more aware of the impact we have on our Earth we have seen reductions in carbon emissions in the UK, from 1000 million tonnes in 2004 to 650 million tonnes CO2e today. A study by Mike Berners-Lee of Lancaster University showed that an average UK person’s Greenhouse Gas footprint is 12.7 tonnes CO2e per year, and that this could be broken down into 25% home and accommodation, 27% travel, 25% food and 23% for ‘everything else’ (non-food shopping, services, health and education etc).
So what more can employees do to address their Greenhouse Gas footprint?