By law, small businesses have many environmental responsibilities but a great deal of them have little or no idea what they are. However, a free online assessment tool aims to help keep small firms on the right side of environmental legislation.
The catchily named Solutions to Pollution has been launched by Netregs, a free website that provides advice to small businesses on their environmental obligations. An online question, it quickly shows businesses whether they are complying with the law and, if they are not, what actions they need to take to do so.
It contains sections on waste disposal, risk assessment and emergency procedures and can be accessed via a link on the NetRegs homepage.
‘If you run a small business it’s important to stay up-to-date with your environmental legal requirements,’ says Richard Martin, programme manager at NetRegs. ‘By ensuring compliance with environmental legislation, small businesses can avoid the risk of prosecution and could benefit commercially in terms of cost savings and improved customer relations.’
To access the questionnaire, go to www.netregs.gov.uk.
Netregs has also provided these top ten tips on being more environmentally friendly:
- Reduce the amount of paper used with double sided printing and email whenever possible.
- Waste costs UK industry £15 billion a year. Ask your suppliers to supply products with less packaging, don’t use single-use paper cups and don’t over order.
- Recycling office waste is becoming increasingly popular. Buy recycled products wherever possible and provide separate recycle bins for glass, cans and paper.
- Water shortages are of high concern of late. Fit push button taps and low flush toilets.
- By turning down the heating by one degree, a typical bill can be reduced by ten per cent.
- Use energy efficient light bulbs to save up to 50 per cent in costs.
- Purchase or lease fuel-efficient vehicles.
- Ensure all employees are aware of the company policies and understand their importance – both to the environment and the bottom line.
- Keep updated on changes to legislation by registering to receive free email alerts from NetRegs.
- Get free advice on resource efficiency.