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Green

Green

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Published by api-3831626
negocios verdes
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Published by: api-3831626 on Oct 18, 2008
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Y
G
REENING
Essentials
1
OUR
B
USINESS
A PRIMER FOR SMALLER COMPANIES

This Gr eenBiz Essent ial offer s t ips and r esour ces for smaller and midsized companies, though many larger firms will likely benefit, too. The resources cited in this document are culled from t he more t han 2,000 resources list ed wit hin GreenBiz.com. There are many addit ional useful or ganizat ions, t ools, and ot her r esources for t he t opics cover ed in t hese pages wit hin GreenBiz.com.Contents

Laying t he Groundwor k................................................................................................. 2 Reducing W ast e............................................................................................................... 3 Ener gy Efficiency.............................................................................................................. 5 Water Efficiency.............................................................................................................. 7 Toxics and Hazar dous Subst ances............................................................................... 8 Travel.................................................................................................................................. 9 Product Life-Cycle........................................................................................................ 10 Building Design and Const r uct ion............................................................................ 11 Taking the Next Step....................................................................................................11

\u00a9Copyr ight 2001 Gr een Business N et wor k (www.Gr eenBiz.com).
Per mission t o r epr int and r edist r ibut e is her eby gr ant ed,
provided proper at t r ibut ion is given, including t his not ice.
Essentials
2
GREENING YOUR BUSINESS
A PRIMER FOR SMALLER COMPANIES
You\u2019re r unning a small or midsized business, and you
want to do it right. That means bringing your
environmental per for mance in line for a healthier
bottom line. But how to start working sustainably?
Or, having started, how to follow through?
Befor e we begin, a few key fundament als:
\u25a0First, make sur e you\u2019re in compliance wit h st at e,
local, and feder al envir onment al, healt h, and safet y
regulations. This gives your beyond-compliance
effor ts a solid foundation. You may also gain
additional benefits: Some governmental programs
offer reduced over sight and paper wor k of
companies t hat are in full compliance.
\u25a0N ext,under st and ho w yo ur busi ness af fect s t he
environment , from t he t hings you buy, t o your
relat ionships wit h cust omer s and supplier s, t o t he
full life-cycle of your products and ser vices. At
each step of the way, there are oppor tunities to
make choices t hat can help you align envir onmen-
t al responsibilit y wit h business success.
\u25a0T hen, begin t o make changes wher e t hey can be

done profitably \u2014 or at least in a way that will not decrease profits and productivity for more t han a shor t per iod. It \u2019s impor t ant t o keep in

mind that it isn\u2019t possible to do ever ything right;
gr adual, incr ement al pr ogr ess is a wor t hy goal.
N ow, let \u2019s get st ar t ed. Ther e ar e dozens of ways

companies of all sizes can reduce t heir envir onmen- t al foot pr int s, save money, ear n consumer t r ust and st akeholder confidence, comply wit h gover nment

r egulat ions, be r eady t o snag new mar ket oppor t uni-
ties, and boost efficiency and productivity. Here are
some suggestions on getting star ted, with links to
additional resources.
Laying the Groundwork
\u25a0Make sure you\u2019re obeying t he law.St ayi ng o n
top of feder al and state environmental, health, and
safet y r equir ement s is an essent ial fir st st ep
t owar d gr eening your business. In many cases, t his

means obt aining applicable oper at ing per mit s,
pr oviding safet y t r aining t o employees, t est ing and
r epair ing equipment r egular ly, and t aking t he

necessar y st eps t o pr ot ect t he envir onment and employees from t oxic emissions. Under st and t he r ules from feder al and local agencies t hat affect

your business. To prepare for inspections or audits,
keep det ailed r ecor ds of t he measures your
business has t aken t o ensure compliance. There
ar e a number of pr ogr ams t hat provide fr ee
compliance assist ance t o small businesses.
For more information:
Compliance Assistance Center s:ht t p:/ / es.epa.go v/
oeca/main/compasst /compcent er s.ht ml
Small Business Assistance Program: http://
www.gr eenbiz.com/r efer ence/
gover nment _r ecor d.cfm?LinkAdvID=3935
OSHA Consultation Service: http://
www.gr eenbiz.com/r efer ence/
ment or _r ecor d.cfm?LinkAdvID=11493
Understanding the Hazardous Waste Rules -- A
Handbook for Small Business: http://
www.gr eenbiz.com/r esour ces/smallbiz/
t ools.cfm?LinkAdvID=8729
\u25a0Measure and track your waste. Look at what
r esour ces your company consumes \u2014 ener gy,
supplies, raw materials \u2014 and what it wastes \u2014
finished , packaging, r aw mat er ials, ener gy, emis-
Essentials
3
sions. Try t o measure and quant ify t his wast e:
How much do you spend t o purchase, handle,

store, and dispose of the wasted mater ial?Your audit may be as simple as count ing or weighing t he t r ash bags your company disposes of on a weekly or monthly basis, or checking energy

utility bills. Or it may involve br inging in profes-
sionals t o assess your company and make
recommendations on how to reduce ener gy,
r edesign pr oduct s or dist r ibut ion syst ems, and
ot her effor t s t o reduce wast e and save money.
For more information:
Re-Think Your Bottom Line:ht t p:/ /
www.gr eenbiz.com/r esour ces/wast er educt ion/
t ools.cfm?LIN KADVID=3526
Waste at Work: Prevention Strategies for the Bottom
Line:ht t p:/ / w w w.gr eenbi z.co m/ r eso ur ces/
wast ereduct ion/t ools.cfm?LIN KADVID=4025
How to Inventory Your Wastes for Environmental
Compliance: ht t p://www.greenbiz.com/t oolbox/
t ools_t hir d.cfm?LinkAdvID=4015
Concise Self-Assessment Guide to Environmentally
Sustainable Commerce: ht t p:/ / w w w.gr eenbi z.co m/
toolbox/tools_third.cfm?LinkAdvID=4770
Eco-efficiency: A Guide to Reporting Company
Performance: ht t p://www.greenbiz.com/t oolbox/
t ools_t hir d.cfm?LinkAdvID=5702
\u25a0W rite an environmental vision statement.
It \u2019s easier t o get behind a vision when all your
player s know what t he company st ands for. This
foundation will show customers, stakeholders,
and your communit y t hat your business is
invested in the environment. W ith your team, set
an environment al vision st at ement and goals t hat
all your employees understand, and your manag-
er s will uphold. At minimum, such st at ement s
commonly affir m a company\u2019s int ent ions t o
respect the environment in the design, produc-
t ion, and dist r ibut ion of it s product s and ser vices;
commit t he company t o being in full compliance
wit h all laws, and t o go beyond compliance
whenever possible; and est ablish an open-book
policy wher eby employees, communit y member s,
and ot her s can be infor med of any pot ent ial
adver se impact s t he company might have on t he
envir onment .
Need a model environmental mission statement?
These companies did it right:
The Body Shop: ht t p://www.t he-body-shop.com/
global/values/planet /pop_believe.aspml
Herman Miller: ht t p://www.her manmiller.com/CDA/
cat egor y/about us/0,1243,c31,00.ht ml
\u25a0Rally the troops. Employee par ticipation is
essential to a successful environmental initiative.
Br ing t oget her a t eam of employees t o promot e
environmentalism in the wor kplace. These troops
can head up t he recycled-product purchasing
effor t , educat e cowor ker s on environment al
issues, and keep t r ack of environment al account -
ing for their department. Consider creating
incent ives, r ewar ds, and r ecognit ion for employ-
ees who t ake leader ship in your company\u2019s
environment al effor t s. N ame a per iodic \u201c gr een
champion\u201d in order to single out individual
employees\u2019 environmental actions.
For more information:
Ten Keys for Educating and Engaging Employees:
ht t p://www.greenbiz.com/t oolbox/
Howt o_t hird.cfm?LinkAdvID=4201

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