When it comes to climate change, the doomsday clock has been ticking for a while now. Countries, companies and governments are rushing to slow down their emission rates before global climate change rates reach an irreversible point.
While the net-zero concept has long been popular in this regard, achieving more immediate effects will call for a zero-carbon approach instead. Let us take a closer look at this:
What is zero carbon?
The terms net-zero and zero-carbon are often used interchangeably. However, they are two completely different approaches to fighting climate change. While net-zero refers to the act of balancing out the carbon emitted with the carbon removed, zero-carbon refers to a production method that does not emit any carbon at the source, thus eliminating the need to offset emissions altogether. Both serve to reduce the volume of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.
Why does zero carbon matter?
At the November 2021 COP26 summit, many countries gathered to discuss how to best meet the goals of the Paris Agreement and the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. Among the goals discussed included limiting the global rise in temperature to no more than 1.5 Celsius while also working to preserve natural habitats and communities.
Net-zero was indeed among the approaches discussed as a priority. However, achieving these goals will call for more drastic measures, which is why many countries have committed to zero carbon over the next few decades.
According to the UN, 70+ countries, including the biggest polluters in the world, China, the USA, and the European Union, have set a net-zero target, covering about 76% of global emissions!
Changing consumer behaviours
UK SMEs are likely to be asked by customers to reduce their environmental impact as the latter is much more aware of the current environmental scenario.
The end-users are keen to know where the product came from and how the manufacturing process helped in fighting against greenhouse emissions. Today’s consumers want to opt for green products that are safe and environmentally friendly.
Pressure from main contractors on the supply chain
As leading UK businesses such as Sainsbury’s, British Airways, Shell, and Unilever, among many others, are committed to minimising their greenhouse gas emissions, it is not surprising to see these commitments finding their way into procurement processes and requests for proposals.
Pressure from the banks
Many financial institutions are committed to ensuring that they do not directly or indirectly finance activities that will impact the environment negatively. The new net-zero commitments are bound to impact the ease businesses can access trade finance and insurance products.
The opportunity for businesses
Those that take proactive action to demonstrate their commitment to reducing their greenhouse gas emissions can capitalise on the opportunity to leverage climate change as a means to:
So, how does this affect your business?
While you may not have had to make any formal commitments so far, sooner or later, the government will start imposing sizable fines on businesses that do not meet the carbon emission requirements.
Global consciousness about climate change is growing, and your stakeholders and buyers will almost certainly expect you to commit to sustainability. Fortunately, there are several ways you can do so:
Over to you
Climate change is real, and it needs to be addressed urgently. You can help by switching to sustainable techniques and aiming for zero carbon as much as possible.
Every action you take or decision you make must happen through the lens of the impact it will have on the environment and climate.
However, even with baby steps, you will stay in compliance with norms and help the environment, and also gain a competitive advantage over your competitors and a strong reputation among your customer base.
To get started with adopting green technologies for your business, book a free consultation with us. Find out how Waste2ES is making a difference to the world – one technology at a time.