Climate friendly business – inspire others to make the change
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Climate-friendly business is important for two reasons. First, because it will result in significant, measurable carbon savings. Second, because people want to see businesses taking action on climate change.

Climate Action Fife works with small and medium sized businesses, community buildings and third sector organisations to help them reduce their energy use and waste, especially food waste. 

Zero Waste Scotland’s Energy Efficiency Business Support service offer free business energy audits for organisations across Scotland, along with advice on funding their recommendations. Similarly, the Zero Waste Scotland Food Waste Reduction Business Support service provides advice on food waste reduction. We complement their work, raising awareness of their service and referring local organisations to them. 

There is demand for this activity. We have supported community organisations and small businesses in the past, and some have gone on to make significant carbon savings. However, many smaller organisations do not know what support is available to them

Energy Efficiency Business Support issues a report to the businesses they audit, setting out their recommendations. We maintain contact with the business and, once they have received their report, we offer support and encouragement for the business to implement its recommendations. We have produced a handy “top 10 tips checklist” to help businesses take the first steps towards reducing energy use and cutting down food waste. 10 Top Tips for Businesses.pdf

We are also exploring the idea of a Fife Climate-friendly business awards or accreditation scheme with the aim of promoting and normalising good practice. 

The top 10 actions your business can take right now

1.Stop energy leaks

Some appliances, such as chargers continue to draw some power when not in use – switch off anything that is not in use, including lights.

2.Monitor your energy use

Taking regular meter readings helps you to better understand your energy usage and avoid unexpected energy bills. Using an energy monitor can give you more detailed information.

3.Be canny with your kitchen appliances

A full freezer uses less energy than an empty one, but refrigerators require more empty space to work efficiently. Appliances with a light or clock, such as a microwave, use power to run these applications, so switch off at the wall when not in use.

4.Check your settings

Use your heating controls, including any room thermostats and radiator controls, to set a comfortable temperature in each room and avoid additional room heaters or unnecessary cooling. Make sure you set any timers, too.

5.Conserve water

Ensure immersion heaters not in use are turned off. All water processing requires energy so make sure all taps are leak-free and turned off after use.

6.Stop good food being thrown away

If you serve food to the public, check your food stock regularly and order only what you need the most. Label food as it comes in and use older items first. Support local suppliers who will have fresher produce that will last longer. 

7.Be creative with your menus to avoid food waste

Are some dishes more popular than others? Remove dishes that don’t sell. Use leftovers and off cuts creatively, and complete-eat = “complete” ingredients e.g. eat the whole ingredient by using stalks and peelings for stocks and sauces, and serve some vegetables in their skins. 

8.Make your food go further

A source of reusable containers in your premises and buildings are useful for taking home leftovers. Encourage people to offer and take away a ‘Food to Go’ box with leftover food that can be eaten later.

9.Donate surplus food

Get to know food organisations in your area that can use your surplus food. It must be still safe to eat: it can be used in community meals, community pantries and other community activities. 

10.Talk to your staff and people using your premises

Whether you are a business, building or organisation, we can all reduce food waste. Tell people: about the benefits of reducing food waste; what you can do to stop food being thrown away; and encourage their ideas to make changes. Celebrate everyone’s contribution. 

 

Do you need support to implement some of these changes, and become a more climate friendly business? Then get in touch with us by emailing hello@climateactionfife.org.uk

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