Getting Started Toolkit
Five Easy Ways to Go Green and Save Money for your Small Business
Here are five easy ways to get you started with implementing green practices to save money. These practices offer a quick payback for small businesses that are paying for water energy and garbage collection.
1. Contact your hydro company and sign up for $1,500.00 in free lighting upgrades.
- New energy efficient lighting can reduce energy costs by up to 25% for most small businesses. Contact www.saveonenergy.ca or call your local hydro company.
2. Reduce the amount of waste, you pay to have collected, and save money.
- Make it easier for staff to recycle than to throw out garbage. Provide recycling containers where people use paper (e.g. next to the photocopier) and for bottles or cans (e.g. near the vending machine or in the kitchen).
- Find out if you can recycle other garbage (e.g. electronics, cooking oil).
- Find out if you can make money from your garbage (e.g. metal scaps).
- Ask your suppliers if they can reduce the packaging they send product in, take it back or provide re-useable packaging.
3. If you pay for water, you pay twice: once for supply and once for sewer charges.
- Fixing leaks when they happen will help you stop flushing money down the drain.
- Install aerators to reduce the quantity of water used.
- When equipment such as hot water heaters or dishwashers break down, replace the units with water and energy efficient models.
4. Train your staff to reduce waste, water and energy use.
- Your employees' practices reflect on your business and can either cost you money or save you money.
- To maximize savings, implement procedures for closing and opening (e.g. when to turn on equipment, turning lights and equipment off, and how to operate equipment properly).
5. Regularly maintained equipment is more efficient, uses less energy and lasts longer, which saves your business in operating and capital costs.
- Reduce the temperature on your hot water tank to meet health and safety standards.
- Keep refrigeration at the right temperature; even 1 degree lower can raise costs by 2%.
- Maintain your heating, ventilation or air conditioning units and change filters regularly.
- Use variable speed fans, pumps and timers when possible.
For more ways to Go Green and Save Money, check out our sector-based tip sheets for restaurants, offices, recreation, retail businesses, construction, marketing, etc.