Monday, March 10, 2008

Ways to make your business more green

Lewiston Sun Journal
March 8, 2008

Looking for ways to make your small business more environmentally conscious this year? It could be a smart move. You can feel good about helping the planet and your business also benefits in customer loyalty as buyers recognize and appreciate your efforts. Many marketing-savvy small businesses are projecting a positive image with customers by promoting their environmental efforts.

L-A SCORE counselor and vice-chair Jack Tetreault recommends that "now is a good time to 'green' your business. The movement is expanding and there is more business-minded information available on the practical, profit-producing aspects of making a business more environmentally friendly. Access to environmentally preferable products and services is also widening - especially for small business."

Most of what your business does, from buying office supplies to disposing of old electronic gear, can be accomplished with "green" products and services. For timely information, practical tools and sound advice on making a business more environmentally conscious, GreenBiz.com is an excellent resource.

GreenBiz, a service of the Washington, D.C.-based Green Business Network, offers a full range of hands-on help for small businesses that want to get more green, from how to finance greater manufacturing efficiency to alternative cleaning solvents and processes. The organization's Web site is packed with helpful information and is geared toward helping businesses take an environmental stance that also helps the bottom line.

The GreenBiz site provides descriptions and links to nearly 100 helpful organizations and Web sites - many of them by state. There are also hundreds of books and reports geared to specific industries. Take time to explore the site for a wealth of news, tools and tips on going green. Select "Small Business" in the "Hot Topics" pull-down menu for topics geared specifically for small business.

Tetreault also recommends the Small Business Environmental Home Page, www.smallbiz-enviroweb.org, which helps business owners tap into pollution-prevention assistance programs of all types. It also offers links to State Environmental Agencies and small business programs. He also suggests that information and ideas from our local Androscoggin Chamber of Commerce could be of value.

To learn more about starting or improving your small business, contact SCORE, "Counselors to America's Small Business." SCORE is a nonprofit association of more than 10,500 volunteer business counselors who provide free, confidential counseling and training workshops. Call L-A SCORE at 782-3708 for additional information or an appointment for counseling.

1 comment:

GreenGirl said...

To find greener computer products that meet 23 mandatory and some portion of 28 optional environmental performance criteria, see www.epeat.net

More than 25 manufacturers have over 500 products registered in EPEAT - all of which meet ENERGY STAR requirments, comply with the EU's Reduction in Hazardous Substances (RoHS) directive, and have a takeback and recycling program available for end of life management. To serahc the product database , see list of manufacturers and purchasers, teh specific criteria, etc - visit www.epeat.net

The EPEAT system consists of the environmental standard and product registry, and a also offers a calculator to estimate the benefits of your purchasing registered products - great for any sustainabililty reporting you might want to do!