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Your small business meets sustainability (webinar for The ICG, October 2021)

Your small business meets sustainability (webinar for The ICG, October 2021)

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Webinar discussing the themes of sustainability, ethical finance and green technology, and include toolkit suggestions, helpful advice and achievable changes you can start using today.

https://theicg.co.uk/event/your-small-business-meets-sustainability/

Webinar discussing the themes of sustainability, ethical finance and green technology, and include toolkit suggestions, helpful advice and achievable changes you can start using today.

https://theicg.co.uk/event/your-small-business-meets-sustainability/

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Your small business meets sustainability (webinar for The ICG, October 2021)

  1. 1. Your small business meets… sustainability
  2. 2. Why are we here?
  3. 3. Me
  4. 4. Not me
  5. 5. Kids
  6. 6. My story
  7. 7. Suppliers
  8. 8. Energy
  9. 9. Web hosting thegreenwebfoundation.org
  10. 10. Banking
  11. 11. Mobile phone provider
  12. 12. Values Business Personal
  13. 13. Values Environmentally aware Approachable Ethical sourcing Ethical consumer Trusted brand Business Personal Outdoorsy Reliable ethical trustworthy
  14. 14. Values • Who we are • Personal fulfilment • Consistency • Compass • Enhance brand
  15. 15. Purpose • Why do we work?
  16. 16. Purpose Why do we work? • …to get paid • “Work to live. Don’t live to work.”
  17. 17. Purpose Why do we work? • …for meaning Purpose is more why you do what you do than what you do • What’s your business philosophy? • What do you believe? A mission is a manifestation of your purpose • What do you want to achieve by the time you retire?
  18. 18. Sustainability
  19. 19. What does “sustainable” mean?
  20. 20. Sustainability • The triple bottom line • 3 Ps • People • Planet • Profit • 3 Es • Equity • Environment • Economy
  21. 21. Sustainability “Meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.” – Our Common Future, United Nations Brundtland Commission, 1987 “Managing today while preparing for tomorrow” – Alexandre Magnin, sustainability consultant
  22. 22. Sustainability definitions • CSR = Corporate Social Responsibility • ESG = environmental, social and governance • GHG = greenhouse gas • CO2e = carbon dioxide equivalent • SDGs = UN Sustainable Development Goals, 2015
  23. 23. Net positive
  24. 24. The business case “The UN’s Sustainable Development Goals are quite simply the world’s greatest business plan.” – Paul Polman, former CEO of Unilever, now co-founder of IMAGINE “A business using best-practice sustainability approaches can increase its profit by 51% to 81%.” – Alexandre Magnin, sustainability consultant “B Corps grow 28 times faster than UK GDP” (2018)
  25. 25. The business case “Companies that don’t adapt [to climate change] will go bankrupt without question.” “It’s not just a niche part of the economy. It’s a whole economy transition. That’s where the focus increasingly is.” – Mark Carney, former governor of the Bank of England
  26. 26. The business case • Reduced waste, reduced energy, reduced materials • Better efficiency, increased productivity • Potential savings, increased profit • Minimise risk • Renewable sources of energy offer a reliable and secure energy supply • Better resilience when the unexpected happens • Attracting staff, reduced employee churn • Attracting clients – increasing demand for ethical businesses
  27. 27. Steps towards sustainability
  28. 28. Steps towards sustainability • Commit • Measure • Change • Monitor
  29. 29. Make a commitment • Set goals • Make a pledge • Establish policy
  30. 30. The Plan Topic Goal Steps Time frame
  31. 31. Make a commitment • Set goals • Make a pledge • Establish policy https://businessdeclares.com/
  32. 32. “I’m a business owner and I give a damn!”
  33. 33. Make a commitment • Set goals • Make a pledge • Establish policy
  34. 34. Measure your impact • Financial • Environmental • Social
  35. 35. Measure • Start somewhere • I started with a spreadsheet
  36. 36. Measure: where to start 1. Reduce waste, identify efficiencies 2. Enable remote working, reduce travel 3. Office energy use 4. Look at your supply chain, source ethically 5. Company culture, engage staff
  37. 37. Measure • Start somewhere • I started with a spreadsheet
  38. 38. Measuring sustainability • Broad subject • Overwhelming • Abstract • Not an exact science • What does it look like?
  39. 39. Mike Berners-Lee, Small World Consulting, How bad are bananas?
  40. 40. Measure your environmental impact Quick start: • Use a free carbon footprint calculator to estimate the carbon footprint of your work activities, such as: • Giki Zero – zero.giki.earth • Pawprint – pawprint.eco • WWF Footprint Calculator – footprint.wwf.org.uk More work, but more accurate • Document what you already know (inventory analysis) • Start collecting data • Impact assessment • CO2e emissions • Other waste • Analyse using Defra’s GHG Conversion Factors or Greenhouse Gas Protocol
  41. 41. Measure your environmental impact The main business activities that release emissions may include: • Business travel • Vehicles • Staff commuting • Energy: electricity, gas, efficient use • Water • Waste and recycling
  42. 42. Simple carbon footprinting • Find a tool that fits your business • Use it to get a starting point • Identify your biggest emitters • Make changes • Periodically adjust the tool to recalculate • Make progress
  43. 43. Simple carbon footprinting • Scope 1 • All direct emissions, those under your control, e.g. transportation • Scope 2 • Indirect emissions, essentially under your control, e.g. energy suppliers • Scope 3 • Indirect emissions, those not under your control, e.g. supply chain
  44. 44. Measure your social impact • Perhaps more qualitative, but there are numbers too (social ROI) • Document what you already know • Existing initiatives • Good causes important to you, your business, your staff, your sector… • Start collecting data • Impact assessment • Profit put towards building social value • Number of people who benefit • How they have been impacted
  45. 45. Engage stakeholders Find out what matters for: • Clients • Suppliers • Employees • Beneficiaries • Shareholders
  46. 46. Analyse • Interpret your findings • Adjust your plan • Make new goals as necessary • List possible actions • Pick your battles
  47. 47. Your people • Living Wage Employer • Disability Confident Employers • Employee ownership and profit-share • Flexible working • Remote working • Encouraging cycling or walking to work • Encourage use of public transport • Extra days off for staff staycationing or using public transport • Staff volunteer days for environmental or social initiatives
  48. 48. Your office • Building insulation • Low energy lighting • Intelligent lighting • Waste minimisation • Encouraging recycling • Encouraging reuse (over single use) • Solar power grants
  49. 49. Offsetting • Should be a last resort • Aim to reduce first
  50. 50. Social value • Giving to ethical / environmental causes • B1G1 • 1% for the Planet • Tree planting • Community initiatives • Pro bono work for charities • Raising awareness
  51. 51. Sustainability frameworks and certifications Future-Fit B Corp The Planet Mark Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) Environmental Management Certification (ISO 14001) Carbon Neutral accreditation (PAS 2060)
  52. 52. https://www.fastcompany.com/40583176/climate-positive-carbon-neutral-carbon-negative-what-do-they-mean
  53. 53. Closing thoughts "…there’s no such thing as sustainability. There are just levels of it. It’s a process, not a real goal. All you can do is work toward it.” – Yvon Chouinard, Patagonia founder • Better, not perfect • It takes a village • Humanising business • Most important…
  54. 54. Thank you dotjay.com greenerdigital.com linkedin.com/in/jongibbins
  55. 55. This talk was developed with the help of North Somerset Enterprise Agency, Greener Digital, and funding secured from Quartet Community Foundation's Megawatt Community Energy Fund, funded by Bristol Energy Cooperative and Low Carbon Gordano. &
  56. 56. Copyright 2021 Jon Gibbins, Dotjay Ltd trading as Greener Digital. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/ Most images are from the wonderful Unsplash community: https://unsplash.com/

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