BT Green Guide: Understanding "green" business practices

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Electronic signatures
Contracts are a major source of paper usage in business. Firstly
there is the need to print contracts and sign them, then the need
to fax them to the recipient, which uses the same amount of paper
again. However technology is now becoming available that enables
electronic signatures to be used. The services to look for are those that
comply with the UK Electronic Signatures Act, which gives electronic
contracts the same weight as those executed on paper.
Electronic signatures mean documents never need to be printed.
This creates a major saving in paper usage
In addition to this, there is the potential to cut down on the
office space needed to store hard copies of all such documents
With the possibility for smaller premises comes the potential for
lower energy bills from the reduced heating and lighting costs.
Case study: Henmore Marketing moves business to a virtual
work space
Henmore Marketing specialises in delivering marketing communications and consultancy
services to IT and technology companies. MD Catherine Doel’s knowledge of the
technology market meant she had been quick to see an opportunity to move her
business to a ‘virtual’ footing.
Henmore Marketing shifted to home-working. Enabled by broadband, all employees
could now be happy home-workers with the same access to the company network
as they used to enjoy from the office.
But after a stolen laptop scare, a few days of seriously delayed email, and the new
challenge of managing email through a firewall at a client’s site, Catherine knew she
had a problem ensuring communications and access to key documents was kept at
the required levels. This led Henmore Marketing to embrace BT Workspace software.
It helps them ensure that team members always work on the correct version of
important documents, while client communication now takes place via discussion
forums in the workspace.
As well as the cost savings of no longer needing to pay rent for office space, there was
a clear environmental benefit in the form of reduced employee travel and power usage.
The combination of broadband and workspace software helped to transform the way
Henmore do business.

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BT Green Guide: Understanding "green" business practices

  1. 1. Understanding... ‘green’ business practices What’s good for the environment can also be good for your business Bringing it all together IT • communications • support
  2. 2. Understanding… Contents ‘green’ business practices 04 PART 1 Tackling Climate Change: Whose responsibility is it? Welcome to “Understanding ‘green’ business practices”, one in our series of guides designed to help smaller businesses get more from their IT and 06 PART 2 communications systems. We aim to demystify key topics by: The business impact of turning ‘green’ • Explaining the basics of concepts so you can see how they 08 PART 3 apply to your business What it means to be a sustainable business • Outlining key opportunities and benefits so you can see what is possible 10 PART 4 What actions can my business take to become green? • Advising on the best approach to move forward, helping you to make the right decisions for your business and avoid 10 Flexible working common pitfalls 14 Business tools • Helping you to save time and money, simplifying the way you approach communications. 20 Marketing your business This guide will look at how modern IT and communications can help 22 The role of IT systems your business to act in a more environmentally-friendly way. The exciting news about adopting ‘green’ business practices is that what’s 24 Staff development good for the environment can also be good for your business. Making a difference is easier than you think. 26 The office environment For further advice about technology and what it can do for your business, access to case studies and articles or to download copies 27 Working with suppliers of the other ‘Understanding…’ guides, go to BT Business Insight, 28 PART 5 a unique online resource for small businesses, at www.bt.com/insight Making it a reality To find out more about how BT can help your company, 30 PART 6 visit our website at www.bt.com/business Some useful websites
  3. 3. PART 1 Tackling Climate Change: whose responsibility is it? Myth: “It’s the responsibility of big business” Learning about your own carbon footprint Climate change is a critical threat to the continued existence of our civilisation. BT’s carbon calculator uses data from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural The climate change that we are now seeing, also known as global warming, Affairs to help determine your individual carbon footprint. It is available at is being caused predominantly by human activities. www.btplc.com/ClimateChange/CarbonCalculator As owner-managers of smaller businesses, it is easy to ignore green issues and place the onus on big business to take action to tackle the issue. The truth, however, is that small and medium-sized organisations account for almost 60 per cent of the UK’s workforce. That, in turn, means that SMEs are contributing to climate change in much the same way as even the largest multi-nationals. Step one in your journey to acting responsibly is the calculation of your carbon ‘footprint’. In other words, gaining an understanding of how much CO your business activities create. Opposite you’ll find a simple tool to help you do this. You’ll need your fuel and electricity bills, details of any flights during the past year, plus your yearly road and rail mileage. Enter your vital statistics, hit ‘calculate’ and away you go.
  4. 4. PART 2 The business impact of turning ‘green’ Myth: “What’s good for the environment isn’t good for my business” Modern IT and communications has now well and truly turned this assertion on its head. Becoming a more environmentally-friendly business isn’t just an ethical choice. It can also help your business to get ahead. ’Green’ business practices can: Enhance reputation Customers and the public increasingly demand that businesses behave in an Help save money environmentally ethical way. Those that fail to meet these expectations risk The experience of businesses that have already adopted environmentally causing damage to their brand. In turn this can harm a company’s ability to win sustainable working practices is that energy efficiency can lead to significant customers and attract and retain the best employees. Research among 54,000 cost savings. The tried and trusted routes to this are things such as turning lights graduates published by Forum for the Future in 00 uncovered that nearly and office equipment off when not in use, and remembering to keep windows half of all graduates would refuse to work for organisations they believed to closed during the winter months when the heating is on. In addition to this, be unethical. conferencing, flexible working, virtual workspaces can result in reduced travel Far from being a ‘nice to have’, ‘green’ behaviour is now a critical business issue. costs, shrinking energy bills, and lower property rental expenditure. All of which means your business can become leaner and more efficient. Make you more efficient The same technologies that help reduce your carbon footprint can at the same Help win business time result in significant efficiency gains. A good example is home working. Increasingly, companies need to prove their green credentials. There is growing Allowing employees the flexibility to work from home not only reduces the pressure from society, government and customers for businesses to act in an amount of travel they do, thereby cutting carbon emissions, but research shows environmentally responsible way. A Henley Centre Headlight Vision study into it also makes employees around 0 per cent more productive. sustainable buying behaviours conducted in 00 found that per cent of respondents would boycott firms that damage the environment – up from only nine per cent in 2001. The attitudes and expectations of consumers are changing rapidly and businesses need to be able to adapt quickly. More and more, the requirement to demonstrate environmentally responsible business practices is being enshrined in the tendering process. Companies whose green behaviour falls short are being excluded at the outset. Can your company afford to be locked out of new business opportunities?
  5. 5. PART 3 What it means to be a sustainable business There are four main areas where a business can take action to become more ‘green’: Improve energy efficiency The emission of CO from the use of fossil fuels is the single greatest contributing factor to climate change. From lighting, to the power needed to run office equipment, to the fuel consumed in travelling to and from work, business is responsible for vast amounts of energy consumption. Later in the guide we’ll go on to provide some tips on simple ways to improve your company’s energy efficiency. Work smarter and reduce travel Business travel is not only one of the biggest causes of carbon emissions; it is also something which can be drastically reduced through modern technology. Changes in work practices can reduce travel and energy use. Recycle and reduce consumption of materials From using recycled paper to encouraging employees to recycle or re-use packaging, cutting down on consumption of materials is a realistic goal. Sustainable sourcing Businesses of all sizes can take simple steps to encourage their suppliers to act in a more sustainable way. Remember, if your individual actions are mirrored by companies across the board, the overall impact could be enormous.
  6. 6. PART 4 What actions can my business take to become green? Case study: Flexible working – a triple win for ESFAC, its people Flexible working and the environment. Flexible working is growing in popularity among the UK’s small and medium-sized businesses. ESFAC is a private company providing medical training services and emergency More and more organisations are seeing the double win of improved productivity and medical cover, particularly for corporate and public events. This means that the environmental benefits. people working for, and running, the company need to be able to work easily and efficiently when not in the office. Company co-founder and Managing Director, Working from home Kim Coe, says: “As a small company my co-director and I are both heavily involved Increasingly people are now taking the opportunity to spend at least some of their week working in service delivery, yet we also need to run the company. With an ever greater from home. The availability and affordability of business broadband packages means that reliance on email communication, staying on top of things when we are away companies can quickly and easily link employees’ PCs to the company’s IT network. Similarly, from base was becoming more and more of a challenge.” online communities are springing up, which bring small businesses and individual sellers As well as needing email and internet facilities when on the move, its two directors together with potential customers. More than ever before, the internet and modern IT and also wanted to have remote access to the Microsoft Outlook application that stores communications is making it possible for employees to be as effective when away from the its events calendar and business commitments. office as they are in it. BT Office Anywhere, developed in partnership with Microsoft, brings advanced Recent research makes this point even more powerfully: phone and data services together on a single device, enabling users to work • Enterprises offering flexible working enjoy an average 20 per cent productivity gain as effectively away from the office as at their desks. The BT Office Anywhere • Flexible working is gaining an increasing foothold among the UK’s smaller businesses. subscription package can be tailored to suit user requirements. 65 per cent cite increased motivation and 50 per cent improved productivity as benefits “BT Office Anywhere is an absolute marvel. It really does enable us to have the • Meanwhile, 59 per cent of directors in small businesses believe they can adopt flexible facilities of our office wherever we are. On several occasions, having access on the working just as successfully as big businesses. move to vital business details has saved me the hassle of driving back to the office in between meetings – a win for me and the environment!” The environmental argument is no less satisfying. Home working can help to cut the amount Managing Director, Kim Coe. of office space required by companies. A study by the British Council of Offices found that the growth of IP-enabled flexible working has reduced the requirement for office space by 25 per cent in most industries. This means lower energy consumption and lower carbon The attitude of employers to flexible working is shifting emissions. Home working also cuts out emissions created by travelling to work: A recent survey by the British Chambers of Commerce found that: • Within ten years, teleworking and technology is predicted to achieve an 18 per cent • Nearly three quarters of employers offer part-time working reduction in heavy goods vehicle journeys • 69.9 per cent offer variable working hours • By 2010, the benefits to the UK economy in reduced congestion costs could be as much as £1.9 billion • Over one third offer employees the opportunity to work from home • BT employees save on average 12 million litres of car fuel a year by working flexibly • 16.9 per cent offer job sharing opportunities. • Increased home working has the potential to cut the worst peak traffic by up to 10 per cent (Research from the British Chambers of Commerce – April 2007) within five years; a reduction that would save 14.5 billion miles a year. This equates to 17 million cars foregoing a trip from Lands End to John O’Groats. 10 11
  7. 7. Mobile working Technologies such as high-speed wireless broadband – or Wi-Fi as it’s more Case study: MED-EL UK Ltd reduces unnecessary travel with commonly known – have ensured that ‘out of the office’ doesn’t have to mean mobile working ‘out of touch’. The UK’s wireless broadband network has grown considerably Cassandra Brown is Managing Director of MED-EL UK Ltd, a company which makes over the past five years. In fact, there are now almost 18,000 UK Wi-Fi hotspots cochlear and middle ear implants – special hearing devices for hearing impaired in key locations, such as hotels, airport lounges, service stations, cafés and railway children and adults. As with many MDs, Cassandra’s diary is fraught and whilst stations, where mobile workers can log on and experience the benefits travel plays a central part of her day-to-day routine, smarter working through of broadband while on the road. Wireless Broadband (Wi-Fi) is helping to reduce unnecessary travel time. An even more exciting development is the emergence of ‘Wireless Cities’ Cassandra said: “The ability to work anytime, anyplace through Wi–Fi has positive – city centres from Liverpool, to London, to Birmingham, to Cardiff are being benefits for the environment. From an individual perspective it means less travel transformed into wireless broadband zones. So wherever your staff are within time as you can easily work wherever you are, whether that’s in a hotel, local café these zones – at home, visiting a client, or parked in their car – they can get or Wi-Fi-enabled city centre, as well as access to information without the need online and stay productive. to return to the office. Meanwhile, a new breed of ‘smart phone’ is now available that allows users to send “From an employer’s perspective we are now able to have our team meetings emails, edit documents and even automatically synchronise calendar and contact offsite, instead of dragging all our field staff up to the office, which is an details with their office PC while on the move. Such devices mean people can do overnight trip for some staff. We can meet in a central location by train, business anywhere, effectively taking their office with them, and reduce travelling all getting work done on the way, and being able to have Wi-Fi access time on unnecessary trips back to a central base. Once again, this means less travel during our meeting allows us to immediately action items as well as access and less carbon emissions, as well as more responsive, effective employees. vital information.” 12 13
  8. 8. Business tools Conferencing – audio, web, video Case study: Civica Group reduces its carbon footprint Using audio, video and web conferencing technology saves money and cuts out large The Civica group provides consulting, software and managed services to amounts of travel time. the public sector. Among its 1500 customers are 89 per cent of the UK’s local authorities and many more in Australia, New Zealand and the USA. Independent research for BT found the average journey time associated with a meeting is an hour and a half. Over a year this adds up to an As a large international business, Civica typically holds hundreds of client average of four working weeks a year per employee lost to travel time and internal meetings every week. As many of these involve multiple parties, the normal way of doing things had always been to hold them face to face. In addition, the average cost associated with three people carrying out This, in turn, meant a large amount of national and international travel for this travel is £305 per meeting. Compare that with a cost of around Civica’s employees. £17 for holding a conference call instead and you get a saving of around £30,000 over the course of an average year. “We began to realise that the amount of travel to and from meetings was responsible for generating high levels of carbon emissions,” said Renna Of course, the big environmental benefit is air travel substitution. Benson, Civica UK Internal Services Manager. “We wanted to reduce our Figures from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs carbon footprint without harming the productivity and customer service show that a 322 mile round trip flight from London to Manchester standards that our business is built on.” would generate 89kg of CO Civica decided to use the BT MeetMe conferencing service. Users simply However, it is generally recognised that CO released at high altitudes arrange the time they’d like to hold their audio meeting, then dial in on the contributes between two and four times more to global warming than BT MeetMe number they have been provided with. The service can be used the same volume released at ground level by up to 40 people, so no matter how many parties need to join the call, there will always be room for them to do so. No long-term contracts are needed So an equivalent CO emission figure for this flight could be anywhere either – customers only get charged when they dial in and use the service. from 178kg to 356kg. “We found that conferencing actually helps productivity levels among our And while other forms of travel, such as rail or road, emit less carbon, the staff. The massive reduction in travelling times means our people can get point remains a powerful one: holding a conference call rather than travelling on with their jobs,” added Renna Benson. “But it also means Civica has been to a meeting is an environmentally responsible way of doing business. able to slash its carbon footprint. Travel constitutes a large amount of any businesses’ carbon emissions. Conferencing has played an important role in helping us to become a more environmentally sound organisation.” 14 15
  9. 9. The virtual filing cabinet Electronic signatures Recent years have seen the emergence of new and exciting forms of online software that Contracts are a major source of paper usage in business. Firstly enable better collaboration and reduce paper usage. Known as ‘workspaces’, the simple there is the need to print contracts and sign them, then the need idea is to improve team-working by storing all the documents and information relating to fax them to the recipient, which uses the same amount of paper to any given project in one place. again. However technology is now becoming available that enables electronic signatures to be used. The services to look for are those that It’s practically a virtual meeting room, filing cabinet and notice board rolled into one. comply with the UK Electronic Signatures Act, which gives electronic Team members can pin notices on the message board and can speedily locate any contracts the same weight as those executed on paper. reference materials or plans pertaining to their project role. Electronic signatures mean documents never need to be printed. And, perhaps most importantly from an environmental perspective, is the document This creates a major saving in paper usage control feature. Most of us have experienced the headache of reading and editing a document that we believe to be the latest version, only to discover we are looking at In addition to this, there is the potential to cut down on the an old one. This not only wastes time but also ends up wasting a huge amount of paper. office space needed to store hard copies of all such documents The virtual workspace concept removes this problem by holding the master copy of With the possibility for smaller premises comes the potential for each document. So you always know the version you’re working on is the most current. lower energy bills from the reduced heating and lighting costs. Case study: Henmore Marketing moves business to a virtual work space Henmore Marketing specialises in delivering marketing communications and consultancy services to IT and technology companies. MD Catherine Doel’s knowledge of the technology market meant she had been quick to see an opportunity to move her business to a ‘virtual’ footing. Henmore Marketing shifted to home-working. Enabled by broadband, all employees could now be happy home-workers with the same access to the company network as they used to enjoy from the office. But after a stolen laptop scare, a few days of seriously delayed email, and the new challenge of managing email through a firewall at a client’s site, Catherine knew she had a problem ensuring communications and access to key documents was kept at the required levels. This led Henmore Marketing to embrace BT Workspace software. It helps them ensure that team members always work on the correct version of important documents, while client communication now takes place via discussion forums in the workspace. As well as the cost savings of no longer needing to pay rent for office space, there was a clear environmental benefit in the form of reduced employee travel and power usage. The combination of broadband and workspace software helped to transform the way Henmore do business. 16 17
  10. 10. Case study: Rawnet cuts paper usage with eSignatures Saving paper Rawnet is a design agency located in Berkshire, England. The company has Paper costs your business money, as well as costing the environment. Double-sided developed websites, web applications and award winning presentations for printing and copying is easy to set up on most systems. It could halve the amount some of Britain’s most successful organisations such as Shell, Honda, Williams F1, of paper you use. Savills and M. Typically, Rawnet’s design projects span from a few days to a few months and there Packaging are multiple milestones that require customer sign-off. Rawnet manages about Consumers are becoming less and less comfortable with the amount of packaging 100 project documents per month – sending out various documents for signature they buy. Consider how necessary it really is, and reduce as much as possible. anywhere from two to four times per day. The documents used to be emailed There may also be ways you can re-use packaging. or faxed to the customer and the next phase of the project would begin upon Recycling receiving the returned form. On average, this caused a two or three day delay As well as promoting recycling in your office, try to buy products that are made from at each phase of the project, and required a large amount of paper. recycled materials. It’s useful to learn the subtle difference between the labels seen “Our traditional method of getting approvals and signatures was simply taking on packaging. too long. It also wasn’t very environmentally friendly because it meant we got through high volumes of paper,” said Adam Smith, Creative Director. Rawnet decided to purchase BT’s eSignature solution. The difference has been dramatic. Rawnet now sees customer approvals in just a couple of hours, while some documents have been signed in as little as 0 minutes. Production is more efficient and there is minimal delay in getting projects completed. “The other real bonus is environmental,” said Smith. “We believe in doing outstanding work and providing excellent client service, but we also believe in A circle of arrows with a percentage in the middle means that the item is made with doing our bit for the environment. By allowing us to reduce paper consumption, recycled material. The arrows on their own just mean that the item can be recycled BT’s eSignature product is helping us to achieve this goal.” – a big difference. Every tonne of recycled paper saves 32,000 litres of water. Every year, BioRegional Development Group, an independent environmental organisation, recycle 4,300 tonnes of paper – that’s the weight of 600 double decker buses that would otherwise go into landfill. 18
  11. 11. Marketing your business Case study: Using online communities to help the environment In the last ten years, IT and communications has been instrumental in making it simpler and faster for businesses to promote themselves and win new business. and win business Andy Vaughan is a freelance journalist from Wigan. He runs his own company Networking publishing independent writing. Keen to raise the profile of his business, but Social networking sites such as Facebook and MySpace have been front-page news unwilling to rely on traditional paper-based marketing materials, he began to for over 12 months now. However, less well-known are the emerging number of sites explore digital alternatives. He wanted to find a way to make contacts and build designed for business networking such as BT Tradespace. Such sites can be used to his business without harming the environment. exchange views and experiences with peers, to find new business partners, or just to He decided to use BT Tradespace – the online community specifically designed gain a better understanding of unfamiliar markets, new business practices, or to source for small businesses. Vaughan and his business partner, Martin Tarbuck, use potential employees. BT Tradespace to publish an e-zine, sell merchandise online and listen to readers’ Once again, the positive side effect is reduced carbon emissions. The old days of jumping feedback. As well as allowing them to reduce paper usage, and so help the in the car to go to a networking event in a nearby town are long gone. Face to face get- environment, it has also proved a success in business terms: togethers will remain a vital part of the overall networking mix, but the ease of doing it “I’ve used social networking sites before so I know how they work – I use MySpace online is helping to cut travel and help the environment. to review CDs and gigs,” Andy explained. “But we wanted something a bit different Online marketing to represent our business. BT Tradespace looks really professional in layout, so we were confident it would help us get our voices heard by as many people as possible. Online advertising is another topic that frequently finds its way onto the pages The extra bonus is that it means we can also do our bit for the environment by of the broadsheet press. In the early days of the internet, few businesses had a full doing our marketing in the virtual world.” understanding of how best to use this emerging medium. Now however, no advertising strategy is complete without an online component. Whether a company is promoting itself via email marketing campaigns or one of the various forms of online advertising, the impact on the environment has been positive. The mass distribution of paper-based marketing materials is being replaced by online equivalents. 0 21
  12. 12. The role of IT systems IT is a significant generator of carbon emissions. Research by Gartner found that information and communications technologies (ICT) account for approximately two per cent of all global carbon emissions. Amazingly, that’s the same amount as the aviation industry. However, just as it’s important for business to reduce unnecessary ICT-related energy usage, it is also crucial to understand that the right kind of investments in technology can play a major role in dealing with this challenge. IT networks, and in particular something called IP networks, are a good example of this. IP networks replace the old set-up of a company having one network for voice (or phone calls) and another for data (or IT). Instead, they combine the two, so that every kind of information – whether phone calls, emails, documents, video clips or audio files – travels along one set of cabling on the same network. By uniting all these kinds of data onto one system, business can take advantage of a whole host of exciting services that save them time and money. One example is the ability to make telephone calls over the IP network. One colleague can call another colleague based in a different office and, just like sending an email to that person, it is effectively free of charge. This is a radical development and one that is set to become widespread in businesses in the years ahead. The term often used to refer to this kind of merging of previously separate types of data and systems is called convergence. And the good news is that the benefits extend beyond the functionality. The environment – not to mention your company’s bank balance – benefit as well. Relying on a single, unified network means only one set of network connections, cables and hardware are needed; it also means you only need to provide power for one system A single network also means you only need to hire one IT and communications service provider, which cuts the carbon emissions associated with finding and using multiple suppliers A simple example here would be a reduction in the travel emissions related to potential suppliers travelling to and from meetings at your offices Similarly, in many cases, IP networks allow for upgrades and repairs to be carried out remotely, something that helps to minimise engineer travel.
  13. 13. Staff development Case study: Mosaic Fashions’ e-Learning success story The training and development of your staff is an essential part of helping any business to succeed. But historically it has also had an impact on the environment. Mosaic Fashions, which owns Whistles, Karen Millen, Oasis and Coast, recently The carbon emissions associated with gathering course delegates at a central deployed BT Expedite’s retail e-learning solution to support the implementation location – especially if flying in from overseas – can be significant. Similarly, of its new point of sale system. Previously, staff had been trained using paper the energy usage needed to heat and light the training room, as well as the manuals through trainers that travelled from store to store. heating and lighting used in the trainees’ hotel rooms, all add up. All of the four brands are very different with different target markets. Their estates The internet is helping to change this situation for the better. E-Learning systems consist of standalone stores, and concessions in the UK and internationally. are now becoming so advanced that your staff can learn as effectively from a PC Therefore a number of paper manuals were produced at Head Office to suit the as they used to in a physical classroom. Today’s computing power means that target audience and shipped to stores ready for trainers to train staff members. the best e-learning courses include a high level of interactivity and sophisticated The retail e-learning solution has drastically reduced paper costs by per cent. tools for monitoring and assessing progress. From a cost point of view, the ability Staff can now access content online to obtain help when they have queries around to train staff without having to pay for paper-based training manuals, flights, the new POS system which runs 10 versions over one system across 249 stores, hotels and training rooms is incredibly attractive to business. Meanwhile, the and 387 concessions in the UK and 50 stores, 112 franchises and 64 concessions environmental advantages of cutting out travel, paper and power usage are internationally. extremely exciting. The overall ‘green’ impact has been positive. The savings in paper, travel and energy usage from using this retail e-learning solution have been significant.
  14. 14. The office environment Working with suppliers Companies, however small, all have the ability to make a difference through the way Buildings account for almost half of the UK’s carbon emissions. According to the they purchase. Building Design Partnership, almost 70 million square metres of office space in the UK are unnecessarily lit. That’s the equivalent of 8,750 football pitches, Office supplies representing a cost of £00-£00 million a year. For office supplies, you can reduce your company’s environmental footprint by A Forum for the Future research report for BT found that energy used to power sourcing locally and in bulk. This will cut down or reduce your transport costs and heating, lighting and IT accounts for a greater proportion of each worker’s total your company’s impact on climate change from transport-related carbon emissions. energy use than transport. Many local governments run schemes encouraging local businesses to source locally made products. The UK Government wants new building projects to use a minimum of 10 per cent of recycled building materials. The aim of this is to reduce unnecessary waste and Green suppliers harmful emissions in construction processes, and encourage more creative re-use Changing to green energy to power your office and operations is an easy way to make of traditional ‘waste’ products. a difference. It will boost your green credentials with customers, employees and the community. Choosing the right green energy deal could also save you money, as well Energy saving in the office – did you know? as reduce your company’s carbon emissions. 1) Lighting an office overnight wastes enough energy to heat BT’s electricity supply contract provides nearly all of the company’s UK electricity from water for 1000 cups of tea. renewable sources and combined heat and power plants. In the last financial year, 2) A photocopier left on overnight uses enough energy to BT’s use of renewable energy cut carbon dioxide emissions by approximately 627,000 produce over 1500 copies. tonnes. BT is a big business, but its experience can be repeated by companies of all sizes. Renewable energy is more widely available and more cost-effective than ever before. 3) Leaving a PC monitor on all night wastes enough energy to Have a look at the back of this guide for some useful websites related to this subject. microwave six dinners. Green purchasing 4) A typical window left open overnight in winter will waste enough energy to drive a small car over miles. The biggest impact small and medium-sized businesses have on the environment is through their supply chains and the environmental performance of their office 5) Switching off non-essential equipment in an office overnight equipment. saves enough energy to run a small car for 100 miles. • Why not include environmental requirements in your contract documents? 6) A compressed air leak the size of a match head wastes enough energy in a working day to toast 444 slices of bread. • Also ask your suppliers for the most environmentally-friendly products with minimal packaging. This will encourage your suppliers to reconsider their practices (Source: The Carbon Trust) • Similarly, you could consider adopting a policy that says all replacement products or services should have a lower environmental impact than their predecessors.
  15. 15. PART 5 Making it a reality Global warming is one of the biggest issues facing the world today. The good news Shut down computers and other electrical kit at the end of the day is that scientists and politicians agree that if we all work together, we can avoid some of the worst effects. Small and medium-sized businesses in the UK have an integral Leaving a PC monitor on all night wastes enough energy to microwave six dinners. role to play in this challenge. Why not think about taking one or more of these easy steps? After all, small steps Making an impact: If UK small businesses forget to switch off even one – when taken by a large number of individuals – make a big difference. PC monitor at night, they could be collectively wasting enough energy to microwave nearly 26 million dinners. That’s enough energy for every person With . million small businesses in the UK the collective impact could be incredible. in London to microwave at least two dinners each. Use conferencing to reduce travel for meetings One audio conference meeting can save up to an average of 0kgs1, enough Use recycled stationery and save paper CO for a return journey from London to Oxford. Remember every tonne of recycled paper saves 32,000 litres of water. Making an impact: If every small business in the UK replaced 10 meetings with Making an impact: If every SME in the UK switched to using recycled paper, audio conferences, small businesses could collectively save more than 1.7m small businesses would collectively save billions of litres of water. tonnes of CO. Reduce unnecessary trips back to the office by using mobile Take-up flexible working communications technology Based on data from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs According to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs an average and the Department for Transport, avoiding one average road commute per petrol car can emit up to 0kgs if driven at a steady 0mph for one hour. week for a year in an average petrol car would save around 120kg of CO. Making an impact: If every SME in the UK made a commitment to reduce Making an impact: If every SME in the UK supported the equivalent of one their employee car travel by the equivalent of two working days of car travel employee working from home for just one day a week for a year, small in a year, small businesses could collectively save more than 1 million tonnes businesses could collectively save 516 million kgs of CO. of CO. 1. Source: Figures are based on a survey carried out examining BT’s own use of conferencing: And remember, being environmentally responsible and helping your business Conferencing at BT – results of a survey on its economic, environmental and social impacts, to succeed can go hand in hand. What’s good for the environment can be good Professor Peter James, University of Bradford and SustainIT, April 2007. for your business too. . Source: The Carbon Trust. . Source: The Environment Agency. To register your personal commitment to the environment go to: www.btplc.com/ClimateChange/Takeaction/LivingLightly
  16. 16. PART 6 Useful websites Power usage General tips and information on ’green’ practices Green Electricity The Climate Group Website giving details of all of the ‘green’ tariffs on offer to UK customers. Green news and information on programmes supporting business on the path www.greenelectricity.org to a low carbon economy. www.the climategroup.org uSwitch Website for comparing costs of different energy suppliers. Defra www.uswitch.com/Energy/Green-Energy.html The website of the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs carries information on the government’s climate change programmes. Energy future www.defra.gov.uk/environment/climatechange/uk/business News, views and practical advice on the ways to live a lower energy life. Travel www.energyfuture.org.uk Waste and packaging Reducing the need to travel The Energy Saving Trust has long been a champion of cutting carbon emissions. Envirowise This page contains lots of useful tips and ideas. Advice on practical ways to increase profits, minimise waste and reduce www.energysavingtrust.org.uk/fleet/Waystotravel/Reducingtheneedtotravel environmental impact. www.envirowise.gov.uk Seat 61 A site set up by a former British Rail station manager as a hobby, to explore WasteOnline the best options for plane-free travel. Link to an information sheet on packaging recycling. www.seat61.com www.wasteonline.org.uk/resources/InformationSheets/Packaging.htm Rail Europe Low carbon buildings Air travel emits 10 times more carbon than a train journey over the same Website of the low carbon buildings programme, which provides private distance. Book your train travel here. businesses with grants for microgeneration technologies. www.raileurope.co.uk www.lowcarbonbuildings.org.uk BT’s carbon calculator The calculator, based on data from Defra, shows you what your annual CO usage is at any point in time. www.btplc.com/ClimateChange/CarbonCalculator/index.cfm BT’s climate change website Details of BT’s own progress in this area, as well as information for businesses eager to become more environmentally sustainable. www.btplc.com/ClimateChange 0 31
  17. 17. Offices worldwide The services described in this publication are subject to availability and may be modified from time to time. Services and equipment are provided subject to British Telecommunications plc’s respective standard conditions of contract. Nothing in this publication forms any part of any contract. © British Telecommunications plc 00 Registered office: 81 Newgate Street, London. EC1A 7AJ Registered in England No. 1800000. Designed by Unigraph Limited 23060/10/07. Printed in England. PHME 53424

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