Did you know it will cost the UK up to £651 billion to achieve its target of cutting carbon emissions by 78% by 2035? However, if we achieve this we could see an economic boost of roughly £918 billion? That’s a £267 billion profit and our damage to the environment drastically reduced.
So, how do we get from point A, where we are now, to point B in 2035? According to government officials including the prime minister, strategies such as better insulated homes to reduce energy usage, increasing the number of electric cars on our road and cutting down on meat and dairy products are key. Now, those are all things us as individuals can do, but without a change from the top, is the 2035 target realistically achievable?
Non-renewable resources like Oil have become the source of thousands of global incidents and contribute to pollution, global warming and the greenhouse effect. In 2010 we witnessed the explosion of a drilling rig in the Gulf of Mexico which prompted new regulations from the U.S. Government to ensure that there were no further incidents however just 5 days ago (2nd July 2021) we’ve seen the ocean on fire as a result of a gas leak stemming from an underwater pipeline. This incident alone proves that just because there is government legislation in place, it doesn’t automatically ensure compliance from independent companies. We can stop consuming the non-renewable fossil fuels at the rate that we do, but without strict and well-regulated procedures from those who harvest it, we’re likely to continue to see these large scale, extensively damaging incidents re-occurring time after time.
Back in May, The Guardian published a report stating that twenty firms produce 55% of the worlds single-use plastic waste – plastic that is made exclusively from fossil fuels! Industry giants like McDonalds and Nestle have pledged to rectify their packaging issues and replace plastic with sustainable alternatives but is it too little too late? The surge in the use of single plastic water bottles that began in the sixties meant that the average person (in America) purchased 200 – 250 packaged drinks each year. That’s per person, not per household! Those plastic bottles are still in landfills now, still not breaking down and won’t fully decompose for another 390 years, long after the original consumer has passed away.
So, with these shocking statistics in mind, what can we as business owners, compliance regulators and consumers do to actually make a change? It’s time to focus our efforts within the workplace, and take responsibility for the waste we create as companies for the consumer to purchase. One way to do this is by implementing an Environmental Management System which addresses your companies practices through improved energy consumption, proper waste disposal and streamlined practices in line with governmental legislation. Prove to your customers and stakeholders that you are a forward thinking business with an eco-conscience and you can benefit from an improved reputation and the ability to attract new clients with the same mindset as you.