The first three steps any employee can take to make an impact on climate change.
Does it feel like actually making meaningful changes to address climate change at your company is out of reach? It’s easier than you think, and plenty of employees are sparking changes at all levels, from raising internal awareness about the impact of climate change on their business to switching to 100% renewable energy.
Here are three steps you can take to make progress, fast.
Many companies have people or entire teams that focus on corporate sustainability issues. Sometimes these are informal positions performed in addition to an employee’s normal role, and other times they may be permanent positions solely focused on sustainability within the organisation (see point 2 for more).
Start by finding out what your company has already done on sustainability and who has contributed to these efforts.
Some questions to ask:
Your company may already have a “Green team” or similar, informal group of people working on these initiatives. But, if one doesn’t exist, then start one!
A great way to recruit people and start the conversation is to host an event – virtual or in-person – on the topic.
Some ideas include:
Following your event, invite attendees to join the climate crew. You can even dive straight into working towards sustainability goals. As with any meeting, clarifying action items with owners and due dates will help drive progress. See below for specific actions you can take.
You want to set the tone early on to focus on the most impactful actions your company can take and avoid getting distracted by actions that may be more visible, but have less impact on emissions, such as recycling, using reusable coffee cups and containers, etc.
The best way to do this is to centre the conversation around your company’s emissions and how to reduce them. Start by doing a lightweight carbon emissions audit, which will arm you with the data and make it easy to demonstrate where the biggest opportunity areas are for your company.
One online tool we recommend is Pathzero, an Australian company that allows you to assess your emissions (and ultimately offset them). Try their tool to get a sense for the different categories of emissions and how your company stacks up.
Alternatively, you can start with the solution areas outlined in the previous article, and apply them to your company’s situation. Outline brief proposals for each, and discuss them with your colleagues in the climate crew or sustainability team if you have one. This will help you start to figure out what questions to ask, data to gather, and people to work with to make progress towards these goals.
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