7 Green Resolutions Facilities Managers Can Make in 2019
ew Year’s Resolutions are about making changes for the better—not just improving your business or the way you work, but making the world a better place too. Few professionals are better placed than Facilities Managers to make a positive impact on environmental issues, not just by cutting their own businesses’ carbon footprints but also by helping to drive change industry wide. Demonstrating your concern for environmental issues can boost your company’s brand, and many of the most environmentally impactful changes FMs can make also have a payoff on the bottom line. So here are seven green resolutions you can make and implement in 2019.
1. Switch to REGO-certified renewable energy. It’s increasingly affordable to use renewably-sourced energy. Opt for REGOs, or Renewable Energy Guarantees of Origin, issued by the energy regulator Ofgem, to be certain that the energy your business uses is generated from renewable sources. Under the REGO scheme,
About the Author Will Richardson is a visionary in the environmental field with a passion for encouraging businesses to go green. He founded Green Element, a pioneering environmental management consultancy, in 2004 to help businesses better understand their environmental impact. His new innovative new tool ‘CompareYourFootprint.com’ allows businesses to compare their footprint to competitors. 14
Ofgem uses the GHG Protocol for calculating carbon emissions from electricity production: if all your energy is REGO-certified, your emissions for electricity are zero. Your energy supplier can match your business’s estimated consumption to the output of REGO-certified suppliers. The REGO scheme backs your business’s action on climate issues with a publically-trusted guarantee.
more effective. Invest in varied bins, coded by colour, size, or lid-type, to help people learn what goes where. Simply encouraging good recycling habits can significantly decrease your business’s carbon footprint.
2. Invest in better disposal facilities
If you’re not already using the most efficient lightbulbs available (such as LED bulbs), you can instantly make a big impact on your carbon footprint—and your energy costs— by switching out every bulb across your buildings. Bulbs are not the only efficiency technology that can make a big difference. Sensors which switch lights off after an interval in which no movement has been detected are great for rooms which are only occasionally visited, like meeting rooms. Every light should be equipped with a dimmer switch to ensure that no more energy is being used than is actually required.
The frontline of environmental action for many businesses is waste disposal. For the public, green waste disposal is a key signal that a business takes its environmental responsibilities seriously. Most businesses now make recycling facilities available within their buildings, but this is only a first step. Recycling properly can be complicated—what goes in which bin? What kind of plastic is this?—and the people who work in and visit your buildings may need education in using the facilities. Clear, engaging signage is a must. Some waste companies can provide signage as part of their service, but even if they can’t, they will be able to advise you about how to make your recycling facilities
3. Implement the latest lighting technology
4. Digitise paperwork Replacing physical paperwork with digital alternatives not only reduces paper consumption, it also
Building & Facilities Management – January 2019