Environmental sustainability is a crucial topic, central to many industries. What are some ways entrepreneurs have found to play their parts? We asked members of the Entrepreneurs' Organization to provide their tips for going green.
Install new technology.
"We are in the midst of a solar panel installation that will allow all of our energy consumption to come from an on-site renewable source. The installation will also place our core systems on a Wi-Fi enabled management system that will allow us to remotely monitor, schedule and adjust our usage. This will reduce our carbon footprint by 682 tons, the equivalent of 2,218,904 driven miles, or the planting of 11.7 acres of trees."
--Christian Arnold, Principal, Clockwork Architecture + Design; EO Kansas City
Work from home.
"We have a ROWE (Results Only Work Environment), an efficient work model that keeps environmental impact low and costs even lower. [This] means that employees work from home, eliminating the utility wastes of a traditional office space and reducing the carbon footprint of regular commuting. Also, the majority of our travel for clients or meetings is done on foot, bike or public transport."
--John Dillard, President and Partner, Big Sky Associates, Inc.; EO Charlotte
"We are heavily dependent on record keeping at both the client and firm level. Just a few years ago, we provided paper account statements, monthly reports, trade confirmations, etc. As industry regulations gradually changed over the years to allow electronic delivery of documentation, we adopted the latest technology to bring us closer to a paperless office environment."
--Frank Fantozzi, President and CEO, Planned Financial Services; EO Cleveland
Partner up with non-profits.
"Align with environmentally friendly nonprofit organizations. As a hauling business, we have partnered up with Goodwill and other nonprofits to help donate or recycle as much as possible. Think about what type of environmentally-friendly nonprofit you could connect your business to be greener."
--Nick Friedman, President, College Hunks Hauling Junk; EO Central Florida
Invest in green technology.
"We have made an aggressive investment in renewable energy. We installed a solar array on the roof of our headquarters' facility, which produces 720,000 kilowatt-hours of electricity annually. Prior to the installation, our headquarters facility produced 952,534 pounds of carbon dioxide annually. The electricity generated by the array equates to 1.3 million pounds of carbon dioxide, making our facility 100 percent carbon neutral."
--Tim Barrett, COO, Barrett Distribution Centers, Inc.; EO Boston