Did you know that using a desktop computer for eight hours emits 70g of CO2e? For a full working year, that’s 778 kg of CO2e. The majority (85%) comes from manufacturing and shipping, and 15% from electricity consumption.
Now imagine a whole office of them, and it’s easy to see where your business is creating the most carbon emissions. In the race to hit Net Zero, many businesses are turning to their Scope 2 and 3 emissions to find ways to reduce their carbon footprint, overreliance on fossil fuels and become more sustainable.
Making greener and more environmentally friendly choices in business can be challenging. Knowing where to start can help, and by looking at which emissions you have the control to reduce can help to transform your business into a greener machine.
What emissions are made by offices?
Sustainability in IT is a big topic, and there are many different areas to focus on. Not that long ago, it was a common sight to see someone sign off with “Please don’t print this email” to support the environment. Now, IT businesses are going above and beyond green promises and Net Zero pledges to explore new and different ways of caring for the planet. Cloud computing and smart networks allow businesses to stop relying on power-hungry servers, and paper-free offices mean a reduction in stationery spend, as well as practical issues like no longer needing filing cabinets.
Unfortunately, it’s not all good news. In 2020, the IT industry was responsible for 1.8–2.8% of global greenhouse gas emissions, a figure expected to reach 830 million metric tons of CO2 by 2030. But there are many steps that any company can take to help bring their carbon footprint down.
Scope 2 emissions are the ones you’ll find most often in office buildings. These CO2 emissions are from heating, cooling, and lighting systems in offices. Throw in technology use, like desktop computers, servers, and even the coffee machine is under scrutiny. How can businesses work to reduce their emissions? There are a few ways.
Use modern tech
Most of the environmental impact from desktop computers is measured from three phases: the manufacture, use, and disposal. Older models of everyday tech can be more power-hungry than modern ones. Updating your tech to the most up-to-date versions can save on energy consumption — but keep an eye on manufacturing and shipping, which can easily add to the carbon footprint.
Make simple greener choices
A single ream of 500 sheets of copy paper can have a carbon footprint of up to 2.25kg. If your business still uses a lot of paper, try to go paperless or at least reduce the quantities. Paper-free can also mean less printing, so it’s a doubly good choice for sustainability.
Get your staff involved
Your people can make positive changes to the company’s carbon footprint too. By encouraging cycle-to-work schemes, car shares, and even reusable coffee cups or drinks bottles, you can help your staff help the business reduce its carbon footprint through small, easy-to-implement steps.
Focus on efficiency
Make sure all heating, cooling, and lighting systems are running with thermostats and are serviced regularly to maintain them. Energy-efficient lights can make a big difference too. Only heating, cooling, and lighting buildings when they are in use is another way to save emissions and money, too. But with office occupancy still struggling due to hybrid working patterns, how else can businesses cut down on their emissions?
Outsourcing for sustainability
Office occupancy is still a big issue following the Covid-19 pandemic, and many companies have decided to downsize or go fully remote. No office? No problem. If you want to cut down the amount you’re spending on an office building in London or elsewhere in the UK, you can outsource key functions via business process outsourcing, or BPO. It’s a thriving industry focused on saving you money, and can also improve your Scope 2 emissions in the process. In the Philippines, where our BPO services are based, 65.2% of office leases in Manila belong to the BPO sector.
Choosing the benefits of remote work via BPO services has huge benefits for sustainability and the future of your green goals. By choosing outsourcing, your business is helping to reduce traffic congestion and air pollution, as well as reducing the need for physical office space. Cloud servers and cloud computing can reduce huge amounts of energy consumption, and choosing cloud-based VoIP technologies in modern contact centres will save your business time and money.
Want to find out more about making a sustainable choice and choosing BPO? Get in touch today for more information.