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Why Is Sustainability and Recycling Important in Business?

Business people pointing to a computer screen with recycling and sustainability imagery. One hand is holding a light bulb that is lit up

We live in a generation of growing environmental concerns, with increasing awareness of the planet’s decreasing resources. Sustainability and recycling are at the forefront of the drive towards carbon neutrality and net zero, and if you are a business owner looking to be more responsible with your practices, these need to be at the core of your operations.

Not only will sustainability and recycling be good for the planet, but also your bottom line.

Read on below for more insight into why sustainability and recycling are so important for any business.

Environmental Benefits

Environmentalists recycling paper products in blue bins.

In 2022, local authorities in England collected 25.88 million metric tonnes of waste. Reducing the amount of waste that your business contributes to landfills could make a huge difference in your business’s carbon footprint.

Let’s think about the volume of paper that your business gets through a day. If that paper was always recycled rather than thrown away, think of the difference that would make. This is a very simple, but powerful example of social responsibility and how making such a simple change could make us less reliable on unsustainable resources.

The more we recycle, the less deforestation, erosion and harmful waste that will occur, negatively affecting the natural world. In fact, it is some of the most easily recycled materials that damage the environment the most when it comes to creating them.

Trees are cut down to create paper, with deforestation resulting in erosion and then flooding. Plastics are created from hydrocarbon fossil fuels, emitting greenhouse gases in the process and damaging the ozone layer.

Yet, did you know that sand is the most consumed natural resource in the world? It is a key ingredient in creating glass and we are running out of it, causing one of the greatest sustainability challenges of the 21st century.

All these materials could be easily recycled, making a hugely positive impact on the planet. Recycling helps to save energy, as it is far more efficient to recycle, rather than create new materials.

Social Responsibility

Office worker dragging a recycling bin filled with waterbottles

More recently, our society has become significantly more environmentally conscious. Having a thoughtful green initiative will contribute to a positive workplace culture. What’s more, companies that have a strong commitment to sustainability will also often be viewed as more favourable by customers and clients, making them much more loyal to the brand and creating an effective public perception.

Ethical Considerations

Office worker shredding paper into an overflowing mound of shredded paper

All commercial businesses have an obligation to minimise the waste they produce and take as many opportunities as possible to reduce, reuse and recycle. A clear and effective recycling policy will make it easier for your employees to drive a company that is ethically stable and focused on being responsible with where waste goes. Recycling is much more ethical than sending waste to a landfill, and you’ll likely find that consumer attitudes exhibit a shift towards supporting businesses that actively take responsibility for their environmental impact, making recycling a great form of PR. You may find that such actions are what set you apart from your competition.

What Can You Do?

office with two recycling bins on a desk

When it comes to creating an environmental impact within your business, the first step is to find a reputable waste management expert that you can rely on. This can seem like a difficult task at first with so many to choose from, but all you need to do is identify what your company needs from a waste management service and go from there. This, paired with a collective effort to promote a workplace that ‘does its bit’ and is environmentally conscious, will create a huge impact in the long run.

Author Bio:

Freya works with REMONDIS, one of the UK’s largest recycling and waste management experts, with a commitment to achieving leading recycling rates and diversion from landfill, for greater sustainability for people and the environment.