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Green Business, Greener Pastures: Ways Business Owners are Helping the Environment While Saving Money

Christopher Jan Benitez

The evidence is everywhere: businesses need to start considering green practices not just to preserve the environment, but to save money as well.

Being more environment-friendly is more than just a trend. It is a responsibility that businesses must take on, especially now that global warming has been setting new records this 2016.

In turn, companies that comply can benefit from reduced waste, cost savings, better brand image, and a more motivated workforce. 

Below are some of the best ways business owners can join the green movement.

Going Paperless

You may not realize it yet, but paper could be slowing your workforce down.

On average, an employee burns through ten thousand sheets of paper every year. This is the equivalent of one fully-grown Douglas fir tree. By going paperless, you are not only decreasing the demand for paper products, but you will also be gaining benefits that can improve the productivity at the office.

Related Article: It's Easy Being Green: How It Pays to Go Green at Your Business

Let’s face it, the stressful sight of paper stacks is not helping the motivation of your employees. Furthermore, the overreliance on papers can lead to problems such as lost documents and disorder.

Today, businesses now have access to technology that can make a paperless office possible. With cloud technology, teams can now collaborate and share documents without spending a single sheet of paper. Some of the most popular cloud storage apps are Google Drive, OneDrive, and Dropbox.

Dropbox home page screen shot

Smart Irrigation Systems

A lot of businesses are already showing their support for the green movement by maintaining plants and gardens around the office building. This, in turn, can help motivate and de-stress employees.

However, maintaining these facilities costs water, and global warming’s impact on the world’s water resources warrants the use of more efficient maintenance solutions.

Keep in mind that a typical spray sprinkler can waste gallons of water through misting. Furthermore, some irrigation systems may cause overwatering, which then leads to fungus growth and a bigger water bill. To avoid this, a lot of businesses and homeowners consider deploying automatic irrigation systems.

With a smart irrigation system, watering is automatically suspended during certain outdoor conditions like rain, snow, and wind. A schedule manages the activation of the sprinklers to maximise water absorption and reduce evaporation. This can also reduce your water bill by up to 30 percent in a year. Today, businesses can access smart irrigation technology with popular providers like Skydrop.

Skydrop homepage screen shot

Saving Electricity

A proven method to save money and lower your carbon footprint is to be more efficient with electricity. This can be achieved in a multitude of ways. One of which is switching to the most effective LED (Light-emitting diode) light bulbs.

CFL (Compact Fluorescent) bulbs are also effective alternatives. These bulbs require significantly less wattage and can last 10 times longer than incandescent bulbs.

Related Article: Smarter, Not Harder: Tools That Help Your Business to Be More Efficient

You should also get rid of old equipment such as printers and computers that uses more energy than most new models. A rule of thumb is to look for Energy Star certification stickers when buying new equipment. This can be found on computers, copiers, printers, televisions, refrigerators, and some other appliances.

Remember to take the time to learn the energy saving features of electronic devices. Keep your staff informed to ensure these features are fully used. Also, bear in mind that, although sleep mode can reduce energy consumption by as much as 70 to 90 percent, turning computers off during after-hours is still the most efficient way to save energy.

Lastly, you can also specify office rules that can help conserve electricity. This should cover everything such as turning off the lights when not in use, using laptops instead of desktops, and manually managing the internal temperature of the office. This can be done with simple steps like closing doors and windows to prevent heat loss.

Recycle and Reuse

Recycling and reusing are time-tested practices that can help preserve the environment and cut down company expenses. There are several ways for businesses to make the most out of recycling and reusing.

Most non-organic materials such as plastic, cans, glass, and paper can be recycled. For reusing, some of the simpler methods include reusing envelopes, boxes, and using reusable coffee mugs.

Remember that there are no set of rules when it comes to recycling and reusing. However, it is important to have everyone in the organisation involved for these to be effective. Be open to new ideas and ask your employees for suggestions. Also, encourage them to practice recycling and reusing on their own.

Get Tax Incentives

You can save even more money with going green by taking advantage of rebates, federal tax credits, and other financial incentives for environment-friendly practices. This is the government’s effort to stimulate the renewable energy industry and encourage businesses and households to be more environment-friendly.

Remember that although there are at least eight financial incentives for the entire US, the terms for local rebates may vary according to state. To check the local discount policies in your state, you can refer to SBA’s website right here. If you’ve been acquiring energy-efficient appliances from Energy Star, you may also check their rebate finder on their website.

Related Article: Earth Day Aspirations: Saving Money While Saving the Environment

EnergyStar homepage screen shot


The world today recognizes the need for a green movement, and now is the best time to dive in. Remember that going green for businesses have both economic and productivity advantages. All it takes is a little research backed by sufficient effort.

Image Credit: Monkeybusinessimages / Getty Images
Christopher Jan Benitez Member
Christopher Jan Benitez is a professional content marketer and writer. He has helped small businesses achieve their goals by implementing a strong content strategy that emphasizes their unique selling points and promoting created content using effective online channels and methods, in particular social media marketing and search engine optimization techniques.