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The Complete Idiot’s Guide® To: Greening Your Business

Book Description

The Complete Idiot's Guide® to Greening Your Business gives you ingenious business strategies and practical tips that are good for the environment and save your (large or small) business money. Coverage includes everything from implementing green manufacturing, packaging, and shipping initiatives to collaborating with like-minded businesses and developing staffing strategies that save commuting time and office overhead.

Table of Contents

  1. Copyright
    1. Dedication
  2. Foreword
  3. Introduction
    1. How to Use This Book
    2. Extras
    3. Acknowledgments
    4. Trademarks
  4. 1. Greening Your Business: Why It’s the Way to Go
    1. 1. Welcome to the Green Revolution
      1. The Bottom Lines
      2. Business Is Key to Success
        1. Business Drives Our Economy
        2. Sustainable Economy Thrives
        3. New Green Industries
        4. Green-Collar Jobs
        5. Benefiting Your Business’s Bottom Line
      3. Good for the Planet
        1. Reduce Our Dependence on Oil
        2. Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions
      4. Good for People
        1. Employees Are Attracted to Environmentally Responsible Employers
        2. Green Policies Benefit Families and Lifestyles
        3. Impact of Healthy Industries on Life
        4. The Least You Need to Know
    2. 2. Green Is Gold
      1. Cost-Benefit Analysis of Going Green
        1. Save Energy, Save Money
        2. Reduce Waste, Transportation Expenses, and Supply Costs
      2. Sustainable Business Practices
        1. What Is Sustainability?
        2. Why Sustainability Is Important
        3. Enhance Stakeholder Relations
        4. Improve Brand Value
        5. Improve Employee Relations and Productivity
        6. The Least You Need to Know
  5. 2. Getting Started on the Green Path
    1. 3. Steps to Make It Happen
      1. Visioning Your Green Business Reality
        1. Gather a Team from Your Business
        2. Define What Sustainability Means to Your Business
        3. Determine Your Green Mission Statement and Priorities
      2. Assessing Your Current Operations
      3. Creating Your Green Goals
        1. What Would You Like to Achieve in Six Months?
        2. What Would You Like to Achieve in One to Three Years?
        3. Cost-Benefit Analysis of Green Goals
      4. Establishing Environmentally Friendly Policies
      5. Creating a Strategic Plan
        1. Prioritize Green Goals
        2. Develop Strategies to Achieve Green Goals
        3. Develop a Timeline for Achievement of Green Goals
        4. Establish Roles and Responsibility
        5. The Least You Need to Know
    2. 4. How Does Your Business Impact the Environment?
      1. Sustainability Audit and Assessment
        1. Environmental and Social Indicators
        2. Example Environmental and Social Indicators
      2. Water
        1. Measuring Your Inputs
        2. Assess Water Quality
      3. Energy
        1. How Much Electricity Does Your Company Use?
        2. Survey Technology Usage
      4. Waste
      5. Fuel
      6. Green Business Programs
        1. The Least You Need to Know
    3. 5. Implementing Your Plan
      1. Establish Environmentally Friendly Policies
        1. Office Practices
        2. Sustainable Supply Chain
      2. Create Checklists
        1. Steps to Reduce Emissions
        2. Steps to Reduce Water Usage
        3. Steps to Reduce Waste
      3. Strive for Continuous Improvement
        1. Small Changes Reap Big Gains
        2. Each Step Moves You Forward
        3. The Least You Need to Know
    4. 6. Calculating and Reducing Your Carbon Footprint
      1. What’s Your Carbon Footprint?
        1. A Basic Calculation
      2. The GHG Protocol
        1. The Example of Little Red Wagon, Inc.
        2. Creating Your Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventory
        3. Greenhouse Gas Reporting Standards
        4. Product Carbon Footprinting
      3. Carbon Offsets
        1. About Carbon Offsets
        2. Are Carbon Offsets Sustainable?
      4. Other Greenhouse Gases to Consider
        1. The Least You Need to Know
  6. 3. Your Business Environment and Operations
    1. 7. Greening Your Space
      1. The Benefits of Green Construction and Renovation
        1. Environmental
        2. Economic
      2. Starting From Scratch
      3. LEED for Existing Buildings: Operations and Maintenance
        1. Enlightening Your Landlord
        2. Commissioning and Retrofitting for Greater Efficiency
        3. Renovating for Savings
      4. Applying Green Principles
        1. Local Materials
        2. Natural and Rapidly Renewable Materials
        3. Maximize Natural Light and Ventilation
        4. Solar Power and Renewable Energy Credits
        5. Reduce Toxic Materials and Emissions
        6. Eco-Friendly Waste Disposal
        7. Conserving and Reusing Water
        8. The Least You Need to Know
    2. 8. Green Interiors and Indoor Air Quality
      1. Indoor Air Quality
        1. Dangerous Indoor Air Contaminants
        2. Biological Contaminants
      2. Paints and Fabrics
        1. Formaldehyde
        2. Interior Fabrics
        3. Nontoxic and Natural Choices
      3. Floorings
        1. Flooring Options
        2. Reduce Flooring Waste
        3. Reduce Toxic Exposure
        4. Increase Durability
      4. Furnishings
        1. Sustainable Materials
        2. Healthy Choices
      5. Lighting
        1. Daylight Harvesting
        2. Motion Detection
      6. Equipment
        1. Energy Conservation
        2. Sustainable Materials
      7. Bathrooms
        1. Efficient Toilets and Sinks
        2. Napkins Versus Blowers
        3. Nontoxic Soaps
      8. Biodegradable and Nontoxic Cleaning Supplies
        1. Air Fresheners
        2. The Least You Need to Know
    3. 9. Greening Your Landscape
      1. The Benefits of a Green Landscape
      2. Self-Maintenance Versus Professional Services
        1. Finding Eco-Friendly Lawn Care
        2. Time and Cost Assessment
      3. Replace Your Lawn with Native Plants
        1. Plant Placement and Diversity
      4. Avoid Synthetic “-Cides”
      5. Water Conservation
        1. Drip Irrigation
        2. Sprinkler Timers Help Conserve
        3. Collecting Rainwater
        4. Reusing Water for Irrigation
        5. Terracing
      6. Soil and Fertilizers
        1. Compost
        2. Collect Yard and Snack Room Scraps
        3. Use Natural Fertilizers
        4. Mulch to Nourish and Retain Moisture
        5. The Least You Need to Know
    4. 10. Greening Your Products
      1. Using Life-Cycle Assessment
        1. Addressing Life-Cycle Assessment
        2. Assessing Environmental Impacts of Materials
        3. Green Manufacturing
      2. Biomimicry
        1. Learning from Nature
      3. Cradle to Cradle
      4. Choose Green Materials
        1. Minimize Adverse Health Effects
      5. Sustainable Supply-Chain Policies
        1. Local Sourcing
        2. Cost Savings and Marketing Benefits
        3. Maintain Safety, Price, and Performance
      6. Alternatives
        1. Seek Recycled Materials
      7. Pollution Prevention
        1. Replace Traditional Solvents with Bio-Based Options
        2. Offset Emissions with Renewable Energy Credits
        3. The Least You Need to Know
    5. 11. Greening Retail Operations
      1. Creating a Healthy Store
      2. Reducing Supply Costs
        1. Reducing Waste
        2. Recycling Used Products
        3. Reusable Packaging Materials
        4. Reducing Energy and Water Usage
          1. Energy Reduction
          2. Water Reduction
      3. Streamlining Fuel Expenses
        1. Reviewing Delivery Practices
        2. Encouraging Walk/Bike Traffic
      4. Educating Customers
      5. Selling Green Products
        1. The Least You Need to Know
    6. 12. Greening Your Restaurant or Food Supplier
      1. The Cost Benefit of Organic Foods
      2. Food’s Impact on the Environment
        1. Meat’s High Carbon Footprint
        2. Chemicals in Foods
        3. Transportation Costs of Food
      3. Organic Versus Conventional Food Purveyors
      4. Green Restaurant Association Resources
        1. Electricity
        2. Water
        3. Waste
        4. Marketing Your Environmentally Responsible Food Offerings
        5. The Least You Need to Know
    7. 13. Packaging Cost Benefits
      1. Sustainable Packaging Resources and Information
        1. Packing Materials
        2. Impacts of Packing Materials
        3. Examples of Biodegradable and Eco-Friendly Packaging Options
      2. Shipping Cartons
        1. Design for Disassembly and Reuse
        2. Help Customers Maximize Benefit
      3. Reduce Plastic
        1. Weigh Your Options: Shrink-Wrap Plastic
        2. Replace Plastic Cases with Biodegradable Cardboard
      4. Biodegradable Packing Materials
        1. Green Peanuts
        2. Post-Consumer Recycled Paper
      5. Reducing Package Weight
        1. Using Less Packing Materials
        2. Reducing Package Size
      6. Cost Benefits of Reducing Package Weight
        1. The Least You Need to Know
    8. 14. Cost Analysis of Getting to Market
      1. Choosing a Green Vehicle
        1. Hybrid SUVs
        2. Is Ethanol a Green Fuel Choice?
        3. Adapt Delivery Vehicles to Biodiesel Fuel
        4. Low-Carbon and Fuel Standard
      2. Freight Options
        1. Hybrid Truck Fleets
        2. Rail Transit
        3. Choosing Existing Green Shippers
        4. Port Support
      3. Local Sales Focus
        1. Increase Local Market to Increase Profits
        2. Reduce Shelf Time
        3. Reduce Transportation Costs
        4. Support Local Businesses
        5. The Least You Need to Know
  7. 4. Your Business Practices and Cost Benefits
    1. 15. In-House Office Systems
      1. Electronic Efficiency
        1. Obsolete File Storage: Save to Disk
        2. Electronic “Paperwork”
        3. Power Down: Unplug Unused Equipment
      2. Greener Electronics
        1. Purchasing and Manufacturing Processes
        2. Update Equipment
        3. Managing E-Waste
      3. Reduce Paper
        1. Use Recycled Paper
        2. Print on Both Sides
        3. Recycle Waste Paper
      4. Reduce Toxics
        1. Chlorine-Free Paper
        2. Soy-Based, Vegetable-Based, and Water-Based Inks
        3. The Least You Need to Know
    2. 16. Greening the Commute and the Workweek
      1. Support Mass Transit
        1. Provide Public Transport Stipends
      2. Help Employees Green Their Commute
        1. Carpooling
        2. Cash Incentives for Employee Bicycles and Hybrid Cars
        3. Parking Incentives for Hybrid Cars
      3. Remote Employees
        1. Telecommuting Full Time or Part Time
        2. Reduced Costs = Increased Profits
      4. Sales and Meeting Travel Offsets
        1. Promote Efficient Business Travel
        2. Reduce Business Travel
        3. Teleconferencing Instead of Fly-In Meetings
        4. Purchasing Travel Offsets
        5. Sustainable Travel Choices
      5. Tinkering with Time Clocks
        1. Flextime
        2. Four-Day Workweek
        3. Increase Family Time
        4. The Least You Need to Know
    3. 17. Employee Issues
      1. Employee Relations
        1. Build Green Values into Corporate Culture
        2. Support Employee Creativity
        3. Rewarding Employees
      2. Encouraging Healthy Food Choices
        1. Provide Incentives to Choose Healthy Lunches and Build Community
        2. Organize Meals Featuring Local Organic Produce
        3. Think Green for Business Meeting Meals
      3. Green Up the Snack Room
        1. Eliminate Disposables
        2. Provide Recycling Receptacles
      4. Employee Health Options
        1. Group Activities: Exercise, Yoga, Tai Chi, and Biking
        2. Credit for Alternative Health Choices
        3. The Least You Need to Know
    4. 18. Green Your Company Events
      1. Green Meeting Possibilities
      2. Choose a Green Venue
        1. Seek Building Efficiency
        2. Green Interiors
        3. Clean Cleaning Agents
        4. Convenient Location Reduces Transportation
      3. Help in Finding Green Space
        1. Firms Specialize in Connecting Venue to Client
        2. Consultants Go Green
        3. Reducing Waste Is Key
        4. Select Eco-Friendly Gifts
      4. Request Green Dining
        1. Locally Grown Menu Items
        2. Reusable Dining Ware
        3. Request Bulk Condiments
        4. Three Stream Waste Stations
        5. Pitchers of Tap: Skip Bottled Water
      5. Reduce Paper
        1. Communicate Electronically
        2. Electronic Registration
        3. Handouts on Jump Drive
        4. Name Tags
        5. Provide Recycling Receptacles
      6. Cost-Benefit Analysis
        1. Weighing Cost Savings Against Additional Expense to Go Green
        2. Creating the Best Combination for You
        3. The Least You Need to Know
    5. 19. Sustainability Reporting
      1. What Is a Sustainability Report?
        1. The Integrated Bottom Line: Areas of a Sustainability Report
        2. The History of Sustainability Reporting
      2. The Business Value of a Sustainability Report
        1. Enhancing Reputation
        2. Improving Internal Operations
        3. Building Relationships
        4. Who Will Use the Sustainability Report?
      3. Does This Apply to My Business?
      4. How to Begin Your Sustainability Report
        1. Build the Business Case
      5. Preplanning Decisions
        1. Focus of Report
        2. Level of Integration
        3. Boundary of the Report
        4. Medium of Reporting—Printed or Electronic?
        5. Communications Messaging and Design of the Report
        6. Level of Verification or Assurance to Use
      6. Information Gathering
        1. Map Out Sustainability Process
        2. Identify Key Issues and Map Data Points
        3. Stakeholder Engagement
        4. Develop Performance Indicators
        5. Collect Information and Data
      7. Prepare and Design the Report
        1. Verification and Assurance
        2. Publish, Distribute, and Evaluate
        3. The Least You Need to Know
  8. 5. Marketing Your Green Message
    1. 20. Spreading the Word
      1. Develop Your Green Story
        1. Why Is Your Company Green?
        2. How You Made the Transition
      2. How Are Your Products Green?
      3. Guide to Greenwashing
        1. Make Sure Your Story Is Valid
        2. Greenwashing Sins
      4. Environmental Marketing Guidelines
        1. Truth in Advertising
        2. Environmental Marketing Claims
      5. Publicity
        1. Electronic Resources
        2. The Least You Need to Know
    2. 21. Promote, Support, Expand
      1. Who’s Buying?
        1. Defining Conscious Consumers
        2. Defining Your Green Consumer
      2. Value-Driven Purchasing
        1. Health and Safety
        2. Honesty
        3. Convenience
        4. Relationships
        5. Doing Good Feels Good
      3. Conveying Your Green Status to Customers
        1. Educate Customers About Recycling Products
        2. Don’t Overstate Benefits
      4. Customizing Your Marketing Message
        1. Staff
        2. Customers
        3. Media
      5. Measuring Your Success
        1. The Least You Need to Know
    3. 22. Stamp of Approval
      1. Navigating the Sea of Endorsements
        1. Understanding the Endorsement
        2. Accuracy in Verification
        3. Signs of Genuine Value
        4. Pseudo Sanctions
      2. Third-Party Certifications
        1. Green Seal
        2. Scientific Certification Systems
        3. LEED Certification: Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design
        4. Fair Trade
        5. Government Eco-Labels
      3. International Eco-Labels
        1. Is It Worth It?
        2. The Least You Need to Know
    4. 23. Green Partners
      1. Government and Organizations as Your Green Partners
        1. Regulatory Bane or Benefit?
        2. Tax Rebates in Strategic Areas
      2. EPA Green Power Partnership
      3. Recognition for Reducing
      4. Strength in Numbers
      5. Energy Star Partners
        1. Energy-Saving Resources
        2. Choose Energy-Efficient Equipment
        3. The Least You Need to Know
    5. 24. Networking With Other Green Businesses
      1. Cooperation Trumps Competition
        1. Collaborating for Common Good
        2. Benefits Beyond the Bottom Line
      2. Networking Resources
        1. Green America and the National Green Pages
        2. Other Sustainability Professional Organizations
      3. Green Festivals, Conferences, and Networking Groups
        1. Earth Day Network
        2. Green Music Festivals
        3. Business for Social Responsibility
        4. Green Drinks
        5. Net Impact
        6. Social Venture Network
      4. Working With Community Initiatives
        1. Cause Marketing
        2. Supporting Sustainable Community Programs
        3. Assisting Nonprofits
        4. The Least You Need to Know
  9. A. Glossary
  10. B. Resources for Going Green
    1. Books
    2. Part 1: Greening Your Business: Why It’s the Way to Go
    3. Part 2: Getting Started on the Green Path
    4. Part 3: Your Business Environment and Operations
    5. Part 4: Your Business Practices and Cost Benefits
    6. Part 5: Marketing Your Green Message