- The use of natural products and energy in a way that does not harm the environment
- The ability to continue or be continued for a long time
- Oxford Dictionary
Sustainability is no longer a buzzword, nor a trend – it is a desperate need for our earth to survive, and the spotlight is shining brighter than ever on corporations.
It may seem just about impossible to make every employee in a business make sustainable lifestyle choices. However, much like any other behaviour, it can be taught and learnt and become second nature. ‘Teaching’ working professionals how to behave is a difficult task, and placing separate bins for different materials with the signs, “RECYCLE: PLASTIC”, etc. just won’t cut it – not to the extent that it needs to, at least.
ENVIRX enables organisations to manage their risk based material environmental impacts in an integrated manner, enabling GRI G4 en standard management and reporting requirements according to the processes defined in the ISO 14001: 2015 standard. ENVIRX uses the same dynamic framework to measure, trend and report on their impact area, i.e. materials, water, energy, biodiversity, effluents and emissions amongst others.
- Teach by doing
You cannot tell employees or colleagues not to use plastic but walk in to work with your morning coffee, topped with a plastic lid. Show how easy it is. Use a reusable coffee cup, and you will be surprised at what an impact that makes, especially if you consider yourself a respected employee.
- If you take something away, replace it with an environmentally friendly option.
For example, if you go into your regular supermarket to buy your groceries, and when you get to the checkout with a full trolly of goods, the cashier tells you they no longer have plastic bags and do not have bags or boxes in any way shape or form in replacement. This would more than likely result in you being frustrated and leaving without your groceries with no desire to return or buy plastic alternatives.
However, if this same situation arose and you were provided with a fabric bag, then you would see how fabric bags are in fact stronger, how they are reusable, and so on, plus you would probably be impressed with the store and tell people around you about it.
The same goes for any business, if you take away coffee cups then provide everybody with branded reusable cups; and then you can make a ‘reusable cups only’ rule, too.
- Make sustainability a conversation
The more people know about something, the more they want to talk about it, and the more they want to actively practice it. Additionally, just about every working professional wants to be in the know about a trending topic. Therefore, make sustainability a trending topic and hopefully, your employees and colleagues will be in an ‘unsaid competition’ on who can be the most sustainable. In fact, you could make an award for “the sustainable employee of the month.”
At XGRC, we offer an Integrated Environmental Sustainability System called ENVIRX. ENVIRX enables organisations to manage their risk based material environmental impacts in an integrated manner, enabling GRI G4 en standard management and reporting requirements according to the processes defined in the ISO 14001:2015 standard.
ENVIRX uses the same dynamic framework to measure, trend and report on their impact area, i.e. materials, water, energy, biodiversity, effluents and emissions amongst others.
These environmental impact areas are managed from a strategy and policy level; enabling leadership to tracking performance against environmental laws, regulation and permit compliance conditions as well as to the organisation’s own objectives. Specifically meeting improvement target and efficiency initiatives. This structured environmental information flow process allows for efficient management and enables leadership to make informed decisions to minimise environmental risk, identify opportunities and improve environmental performance.