Small Businesses Still Need Help in Going Green

Around 85% of the UK’s SMEs have put “going green” firmly on the business agenda during the next five years according to research by ISP Eclipse Internet.

The figures suggest that our small & Medium Sized Enterprises are keen to cut their carbon footprint but also require more assistance from the government, saying that there is not enough support for their green business efforts.

Having an environmentally friendly business, or at least “doing their bit” to cut down on waste and pollution, is apparently high on the list of priorities for UK small business and already many of them are putting into place measures to cut carbon.

Mostly these efforts rely on:

  • 76% of businesses now recycling or intending to recycle
  • 67% of businesses reducing their waste or drawing up waste reduction plans
  • 30% switching off equipment when not in use
  • Only 7% of businesses regard cutting commuting as part of their green plans

The biggest carbon producing act is commuting to work (Road traffic counts for 25% of all UK CO2 emissions) and this is one area where the least environmentally friendly gains are being made or at least where intentions to change this practice are not being drawn up. This may be due to very practical reasons but businesses could help reduce their impact by introducing flexible working or having employees work from home.

Working from Home and flexible working can allow, for instance, employees to dodge the rush hour traffic when most traffic jams and pollution occurs.

In addition there are gains to be had in productivity, employee relations and the work-life balance of modern families. Technology such as broadband, VoIP and web & phone conferencing tools can help to reduce the energy demands of businesses and need to be considered as business and environmental benefits.

Of the businesses surveyed only 10% believe they know what they are doing when it comes to “greening” their business which leaves a massive 90% needing more assistance.

So even though SMEs are leading the way in industry going green they still require more advice.

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