10 reasons why businesses need to start managing carbon emissions

An overview level outline of some of the key drivers challenging businesses to start building carbon management into their long-term strategies

There are growing pressures on UK organisations to start measuring and managing carbon emissions in the challenge to meet it’s 2050 Net Zero Target. Whilst ‘doing the right thing’ will be central to the narrative of most organisations, in reality, there will be several other drivers behind the decision to start their business carbon management journey.

In no particular order, as different businesses will have different priorities and purposes, we outline ten of the most common reasons why UK businesses need to start measuring and managing their carbon emissions.

Business reputation

Managing carbon emissions can enhance a business’s reputation by showing its commitment to environmental sustainability. Consumers are increasingly preferring eco-conscious businesses, thereby improving public reception. Through demonstrating environmental responsibility, companies attract environmentally conscious customers as well as investors, thus strengthening their position in the market.

Reduced Costs

Companies that can manage carbon emissions often streamline their operations, leading to reduced costs across the business. Examples include reducing business travel in favour of video meetings, reducing use of printing and stationery, switching to low energy consumption products, creating energy from waste and replacing company vehicle fleets with electric models, especially if they can be powered through renewable energy supplies.

Whilst Auditel can support clients around all these reasons, cost reduction and management is their specialisation and by helping organisations reduce their carbon emissions whilst simultaneously reducing their costs, with comprehensive procurement services and carbon solutions there is the potential to self-fund a company’s journey to net-zero.

Attracting investment

Businesses that proactively manage carbon emissions demonstrate a commitment to sustainability, which can appeal to economically responsible investors seeking environmentally conscious opportunities. Through adopting green practices and reducing their carbon footprint, companies showcase their ability to adapt to evolving market demands, making them more desirable in the eyes of investors looking for long-term viability. Additionally, transparent reporting on emission reduction strategies and environmental initiatives can build trust with investors and stakeholders, potentially increasing access to capital and investment opportunities.

Becoming a sector innovator and gaining a competitive edge

Some businesses are recognising the value of being amongst the first in their sectors to make extra efforts to showcase their green credentials. Using high quality carbon footprint, reporting, reduction and verification solutions, as provided by Auditel, a business can trust the outcomes presented and proudly showcase their achievements, without risk of greenwashing accusations.

Businesses that are demonstrating a commitment towards net-zero are extremely attractive in the eyes of an eco-conscious consumer and can grow their sales at the expense of their non-eco-friendly competitors.

Public Sector Tenders

The UK Government announced in June 2021 that Public Procurement Notice 06/21 requiring all companies and organisations who apply for central government contracts would need to demonstrate their alignment with the Government’s 2050 Net Zero goals. Public sector tendering contracts are often setting net-zero as a minimum requirement, and between now and 2050 will more likely than not be considered the norm for the majority of contracts.

Mitigate effects of climate change

When a business reduces their carbon emissions, it contributes to mitigating climate change by halting the release of greenhouse gasses into the atmosphere, limiting global temperature rises. Through adopting sustainable practices and technologies, businesses decrease their carbon footprint as a whole, thus reducing their impact on the ecosystem and environment. A concerted effort across industries will help slow the pace of climate change, preserve ecosystems and safeguard against the effects of rising temperatures, such as extreme weather events and rising sea levels.

Reduce waste

An output of reducing carbon emissions is to optimise energy usage and allocation of resources, resulting in less waste in the process of production. Utilising energy efficient technologies and practices and result in better resource use, minimising material waste and reducing environmental impact. Additionally, by streamlining operations to cut out emissions, businesses may uncover opportunities to reduce waste generation throughout their supply chains, fostering a more sustainable approach to resource management.

Attract and retain better employees

Potential employees who are climate conscious prefer to work for companies reducing their carbon emissions because it reflects a commitment to sustainability, aligning with their personal values. Many companies often prioritise employee well-being and demonstrate forward thinking leadership, which can enhance job satisfaction and employee morale. Additionally, working for a company dedicated to reducing carbon emissions may offer opportunities for employees to contribute meaningfully to environmental initiatives and make a positive impact on the planet.

Security and stability

A business that is reducing its carbon emissions can provide better security by diversifying its energy sources and reducing dependency on fossil fuels, which are subject to price volatility and supply chain disruptions. Implementing energy-efficient technologies and practices and also enhance operational resilience, mitigating the risks associated with energy shortages and price spikes. Furthermore, reducing carbon emissions can help businesses comply with environmental regulations and lessen potential financial penalties or reputational damage associated with non-compliance, ensuring long-term stability and security.

Protecting against ‘climate risk’

Climate risk involves looking at the risks associated with direct impact of climate change on business operations and assets. The threat of climate risk for businesses has several areas and impacts many aspects of operations.  Examples are ‘physical risks’ where impacts of climate change impact directly on businesses such as flooding, drought and wildfires. ‘Transition risks’ are becoming increasingly important as the world shifts towards a low-carbon economy. These risks arise from policy changes, technological advancements that can impact the value of certain assets or business models. Such risks are a vital consideration for businesses looking to remain competitive in a changing world.

Conclusion

Most businesses will consider many of these as part of their decision to begin or enhance their management of carbon emissions and ensure they have an effective management programme. It becomes core to their organisation and because of the increasing importance and relevance of having a robust and effective management programme, many organisations especially within the SME sector are attracted to Auditel, who can provide verified meaningful and measurable solutions and potentially in a self-funding way too.

To find out more about how Auditel can support your business in managing the impacts of climate change, visit www.auditel.co.uk. To learn how you can become part of Auditel, and manage your own business consultancy as part of the Auditel Business Community, enquire here.

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