How to operate more sustainably, and cut carbon emissions.
For businesses looking to reach their sustainability goals, and proactively respond to climate change, it all starts with the commute. After all, transport is at the center of global socio-economic challenges and opportunities, accounting for approximately 64% of global oil consumption, 27% of all energy use, and 23% of the global energy-related carbon dioxide emissions.
As we gradually step out of the pandemic, we have to collectively cultivate greater environmental awareness in our daily routines, especially when it comes to traveling to work. According to the International Energy Agency (IEA), road travel accounts for three-quarters of transport emissions with 45% coming from passenger vehicles alone.
Whether your employees are in the office every day or twice a week, small but significant incremental changes can make a big difference in reaching your sustainability goals. Sustainable transport, including electric vehicles, private shuttles, and public transportation, is about moving people with greater efficiency. That’s why clients turn to us to provide a corporate employee solution that reduces reliance on cars, cuts congestion in the surrounding area, and decreases CO2 emissions.
Below are our top tips on how to operate more sustainably, and cut carbon emissions:
Carbon Footprint Analysis & Sustainable Goal Setting
The first step in creating change of any kind is to understand where things stand, and where you want to go. For companies, this involves reviewing their current carbon footprint and the source of the majority of emissions. After a transparent and accurate internal analysis, layout sustainable goals and targets to support implemental changes throughout the business. From here, it’s time to roll out reduction measures. This is the critical piece, it’s about taking action and proactively reducing your carbon footprint across all aspects of the business. The difference in speed and scale will be dependent on the size of your company, and how fast changes can be rolled out.
Commuting & Business Travel
It’s true that the employee commute and business travel have traditionally contributed towards emissions. This is why corporate shuttles are a sustainable (and affordable) alternative. Our technology is able to plan and optimize the journey based on your employees’ zip codes for a faster and more efficient ride. Reducing reliance on cars positively contributes towards less congestion and air pollution surrounding your business’s site. With fewer company cars on the road, this cuts down on greenhouse gases (GHGs) associated with multiple vehicles at a standstill and stop-start traffic jams. After all, one employee shuttle emits significantly less CO2 – the most important greenhouse gas – than 20 to 30 cars.
According to our research, one HQ Shuttle carrying 10 employees saves 1500 lbs of CO2 emissions daily and 360,000 lbs annually which is the equivalent of planting 2,700 trees.
With our business dashboard, you can easily measure and track your corporate carbon footprint, and lead your company into a greener future. Plus, the time-saved and passenger productivity gained compared to driving, parking, or commuting on public transportation is a win-win. For a healthy alternative, we’re big fans of the most traditional type of transportation there is walking and cycling. Here you can see the top 10 bicycle rental companies and leasing programs in the US.
The starting point for the majority of carbon emissions is from within the buildings whether office spaces or factories. The obvious contributors are electricity and heat consumption, especially in the winter months. This is why it’s worthwhile to insulate your building which in spite of the financial investment will cut costs through improved insulation and energy efficiency. For companies that do not own their offices, we recommend opening the dialogue with your property management company to explore ways to make the building operationally more sustainable.
As part of your organization’s effort, we recommend making the switch to a certified renewable energy provider. In the United States, around 80% of the energy comes from fossil fuels, however, there are American renewable energy companies that are working towards a greener future. Currently, wind and solar power are the fastest-growing renewable energy sources in the US. In October 2019, accounting for 11.3% of US electricity generation, having grown to 14% as of October 2021 according to CleanTech. This is expected to increase significantly with predictions of up to 73 GW of renewable energy being produced in the next 8 to 10 years. Renewable energy growth is set to continue to grow this year as concern for climate change and support for environmental considerations grow and with it demand for cleaner energy sources across multiple industries from residential, commercial to retail. To learn more about buying clean energy, explore the US Department of Energy’s website and the US Energy Information Administration page. The switch to clean energy is a wise one in that it’ll not only improve your carbon footprint but also reduce emissions. Smart and sustainable solutions for heating and lighting, for example, can adapt according to when employees are present at work.
Team Work & Corporate Culture
At HQ, we feel a successful sustainability strategy is one in which all of your organization is unified in taking action against climate change. It should be rooted within the corporate culture from employee education and training courses to brainstorming and idea-sharing. It’s a group effort that impacts employees, influences customers who prefer carbon-neutral businesses, and impresses investors with a forward-thinking approach.
We understand that the term “sustainable transportation” goes far beyond reducing emissions. The mobility world, including corporate travel, has the potential to improve the lives of billions of people as we improve air quality and make our cities cleaner and less congested. The future to a more sustainable future is a long one that we can tackle one journey at a time. Together.
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