Recent record-breaking droughts, windstorms, blizzards, and floods reinforce the reality that climate change is transforming the environment. As an environmentally conscious corporate citizen, your company has a responsibility to curb the adverse effects of global warming by conserving your use of natural resources and energy, while minimizing pollution. What’s more, “going green” will reduce your risk of lawsuits for alleged damage to the environment – and can boost your bottom line by saving time and money.
Risk management experts recommend these eco-friendly business processes:
- Minimize paperwork and digitize files. To reduce the expense and inefficiency of handling paper, have employees scan and route incoming mail; recycle, discard, or retain original documents; send as much correspondence as possible by e-mail; and require double-sided printing.
- Boost recycling. Despite automation, every company is paper intensive. To reduce costs, facilitate and encourage recycling paper wherever possible. You can also put a dishwasher in the company lunchroom to encourage the use of reusable, washable coffee mugs, rather than styrofoam cups.
- Promote telecommuting. Fewer workers idling in traffic to and from the job reduces fossil fuel pollutants going into the atmosphere. To help the environment – and eliminate the loss of time and money in commuting – encourage employees to work from home, wherever practical.
- Reduce power consumption. Shut down computer towers, printers, CRTs, copiers, and other electronic devices at night.
- Manage used or scrapped IT equipment. Because these devices contain a number of hazardous materials, make sure to recycle or discard them in an environmentally friendly and cost-effective way.
Set up a “go green” committee for management to track the cost savings from these policies and encourage employees to provide examples of how they or coworkers are helping save the environment.
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