Five reasons to go green

Published:  16 June, 2009

KETTERING: There are five powerful reasons every construction business should set up an environmental management system (EMS) today.

A formal plan to minimise impact on the environment brings nothing but benefits, according to environmental expert Simon de Grey.

He leads environmental consulting and training at Kettering training company Pivotal Performance, and has helped hundreds of companies plan and execute ways to go green.

"While there is some cost and effort involved in putting together a formal plan for protecting the environment, the returns are swift and plentiful," he said.

"A well planned and executed environmental management system can bring reduced costs and increased levels of business. There are virtually no downsides to setting one up, other than the need to commit to your business going green and spend some time taking action."

According to Mr de Grey, the five reasons to set up an EMS and go green are:

  1. Better understanding of business processes: To truly make your business green you need to know exactly what it does and how it does it. This means reviewing all business functions and processes. "Clients often find they are doing things they didn't know about and which are not necessary," said Mr de Grey.
  2. Reduced costs: An EMS typically finds smart ways to reduce energy consumption and wastage, which ultimately means lower bills.
  3. Easier to attract and retain staff: Employees who are passionate about recycling and being green at home are more likely to be attracted to a business that fits with their way of thinking.
  4. Competitive advantage: Because so few businesses commit to being green and actually do it, there is a huge marketing advantage to being able to demonstrate genuine green credentials. Mr de Grey added: "When all other factors are equal, being green can give your business a distinct competitive edge.
  5. Less expensive than being forced to do it: Legislation will change and so will business practices in the decades to come. Changing business practices before the laws demands it is smart and cost effective.

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