After nearly a year of a global pandemic, sustainability is still the hottest of topics, along with a wider range of environmental and social issues. As the digital revolution before it, the sustainability revolution is one of the most critical challenges and opportunities for businesses and economies in the decades ahead.
Consumers and investors are demanding a significant change. Business owners across all industries, ignore at your peril. No matter the industry, product or service being sold, customers are using their wallets to align with brands that share their values.
Some companies are grasping this change faster than others, and consumers along with investors are rewarding them (according to the Bangkok Post). Even before the Covid-19 economic slowdown, shares of lower-carbon energy companies were outperforming those of the oil and gas majors. Unilever’s Sustainable Living Brands portfolio is growing nearly twice as fast as other brands it owns.
A report conducted by Neilson shows that sustainability-linked consumer products now grow nearly six times faster than other brands. Coupled with 73% of global consumers stating they would definitely or probably change their consumption habits to reduce their impact on the environment.
As the world’s top countries accelerate towards the goals of Paris Agreement & the UNFCC, all eyes are on the 26th UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26) in Glasgow on 1st – 12th November 2021, to see what measures and goals to get towards net-zero will be put in place by global leaders. With the US re-joining the Paris Agreement, spearheaded by US Special Envoy for Climate John Kerry, COP26 summit is set to be one of the most exciting yet.
“In the race to win net-zero, the world must achieve breakthroughs across the global economy” writes Alok Sharma, COP26 President, but this all starts at home.
Here are some top tips for BMA business owners to make sure you’re not left behind in the race to be more sustainable:
- Make bold strategic choices – as a business leader you need to be aware of emerging trends and should be staying ahead of your customer’s changing shopping habits.
- Innovate or reinvent products – have you considered how you can create new products produced using fewer carbon emissions, less waste or an emphasis on wellness? Procter & Gamble are making products in reusable containers and developing products that require customers to add water to use them (i.e. hand soap, shampoo etc). Dry products are lighter to transport and therefore, emit less carbon. Building material companies are following suit for low carbon steel & cement – what can the bathroom industry learn from this?
- Rethink operations – the day-to-day running of your business is often second nature and things like energy bills can often be overlooked. This is one of the best places to start your sustainable energy strategy.
In order to make an impact, evaluate your energy strategy so that it accurately represents your business goals. Whether that’s the way energy is procured or, looking to implement renewable or sustainable energy saving technology.
Is it possible to make some significant changes by upgrading to LED lighting or installing Solar Panels. Installing Electric Vehicle Chargers can also increase footfall to your business at the same time as increasing your green credentials. At Planet-U, we are experts in helping companies assess their energy strategies in a hassle-free manner.
- 4. Create partnerships – teaming up with like-minded businesses trying to achieve your sustainability goals will help tackle the broad and complex issues you’re facing and drive alliances across the industry.
Talking about sustainability won’t just solve the challenges businesses are facing, it requires action. There are no silver bullets, it’s a question of businesses doing as much as what can join the sustainability revolution facing our world today, in order to build a better future. At Planet-U Energy we believe there is a path to a future with more sustainable and renewable energy that doesn’t just have to be good for the planet, but it can be good for business too.
If you would like to find out more information or discuss how you can improve your business energy strategy, email Chris Thurling (Head of Renewables, Planet-U Energy) at: [email protected]