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  • Our experts process over 93,000 invoices per month and we've recovered over £11m in over-charges for our clients in the last year
  • We provide support to over 500 businesses for energy and carbon management
  • Our solutions team have identified savings of £37.5m per annum for our clients, a total of 495,338,992 kWh savings identified
  • Last year we saved our CCA clients alone £25.5m

Reducing your organisation’s ‘plastic footprint’

Creating a greener future for our planet is moving higher up the public agenda, with more people recognising the need to take action against climate change. And many of our actions do have an impact on our environment, both at work and at home.

Awareness around the issue of single-use plastics and plastic pollution in particular is increasing each year – in fact, ‘single-use’ was the official word of the year in 2018! The good news is that even small changes can make a difference – and when it comes to plastic, there are lots of little ways you can change your behaviour to ensure you’re not contributing to a growing problem.

What’s the problem with plastic?

We use a lot of plastic – over 300 million tonnes of plastic is manufactured every year, half of which we use just once, sometimes only for a few seconds before throwing it away. It’s plastic waste that is the increasingly pressing issue – a plastic bottle can take around 450 years to break down, and it can often end up in the ocean. Even recyclable plastic isn’t as environmentally friendly as you might think, as two-thirds of plastic that can be recycled still ends up in landfill or in the incinerator.

The truth is, we are all affected by plastic waste, and we are all responsible. But it’s not all doom and gloom – the good news is that there are lots of small things that we can do to help tackle a big problem. And many of them are simple behaviour changes that we can all accommodate.

So, what can your business do?

All businesses have a responsibility to ensure that their activities have a minimal effect on their environment, and so it’s important that business owners are actively trying to reduce the amount of plastic waste produced by their organisation.

Here are a just a few ideas on what you can implement within your business:

  • Not all plastic is bad! Reusable plastic containers and mugs can actually help you to avoid the single-use plastics that are clogging up our oceans. Encourage staff to use a reusable mug when they get their morning coffee – many coffee shops now offer incentives for those who bring in their own mug, and they won’t have to use a plastic lid/stirrer.
  • Did you know that glass can always be recycled? So, where possible, make the switch from plastic to glass. If you have a water cooler or coffee machine, you can make the simple switch from disposable cups to reusable, hard plastic bottles and mugs/thermal cups.
  • If you sell products with plastic packaging, or provide your customers with plastic bags, consider using more environmentally-friendly materials. There are a number of substitutes on offer, from innovative plant-based plastics to traditional paper bags.
  • Look around your business for ‘hidden’ plastics – many people aren’t aware that tea bags are around 25% plastic, for example!
  • Vending machines also contain a variety of single-use plastic horrors. Simply get rid – you could also reduce your energy consumption by doing this!

It is important to engage your staff and encourage them to crack down on single-use plastic waste. Why not set some targets or competitions within the workplace and offer rewards to incentivise them? Share news internally on the subject to help keep them in the know (you can set up a news alert on all news relating to single-use plastics, for example), and recognise those who are doing well.

Small & sustainable businesses

Is sustainability a priority for your business? Inenco can help you to become more energy efficient, reducing your energy usage and your carbon footprint as a result.

If you’d like to talk to one of our experts, call us on 0800 408 1499 or email